"I was already a huge aficionado of Sarah Brightman's work and knew I'd eventually come around to buying this DVD but seeing her in concert just a few weeks ago is what truly inspired this purchase. When you catch her live it's really important to have up-close seats, if you can get them, and I was fortunate to be near enough to the stage to see the wonderful set as well as the goddess in action. She put on a phenomenal show and, as always, looked and sounded like an angel. It's rare for an artist to do this but "Harem: A Desert Fantasy" features 12 videos filmed around Morocco and Egypt. The track listing says 13 songs but "Nessun Dorma" was actually taken from a live performance she did, which can be found on her "La Luna" DVD, seemingly a bit out of place. From the outfits to the settings to the sites and props used, every video is a dazzling feast for the eyes but a few stood out in particular with me. "Harem" is understandably a very energetic video because of the lively Middle Eastern beats and soaring strings that make me want to jump in and join them in dance for the song is so infectious! In "Beautiful" Sarah is scantly clad as she lay upon a bed of roses as the vibrant petals descend like softly falling rain. I also love the part where she's surrounded by a wall of licking flames... "Un Bel Di" is probably my favorite. It was exquisitely shot with exotic landscapes and Sarah looks absolutely stunning as her hair and silky trellis blow behind her as the sun sets beyond the hilltops, and on "The Journey Home" she looks like a mystical being twirling in slow circles, often seen riding over the sandy dunes on a gorgeous black mare. The extra features consists of a 30 minute behind the scenes documentary that's mildly entertaining and a photo gallery that only shows about 5 pictures... If you want to see some breathtaking images, buy the limited edition version of her "Harem" CD that includes a bonus DVD that's well worth the extra cash. In Sarah's own words, "The true power of fantasy is that it releases us from the bonds of reality. You can be any place and become anyone." This is made apparent in these lavish videos and I recommend it to anyone who wants to be taken on a magical journey."
Lovely voice, lush scenery, great video!
Furiae | USA | 03/02/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a collection of music videos Sarah filmed in exotic locales such as Morocco and Egypt. "Desert Fantasy" is a terrific name for this DVD.What we get is a visual feast with this DVD. If you enjoyed her 'Harem' album, this could definitely be a delight for you. She re-visits songs from previous albums ("Anytime, Anywhere" and "Time to Say Goodbye") and reshoots new videos for them. There's also included a live "Nessun Dorma" performance from her 'La Luna' tour. If you've seen the 'La Luna' concert, though, it's nothing new.The list includes:1) Harem
3) Mysterious Days
4) Anytime, Anywhere
5) It's A Beautiful Day
7) The War Is Over
8) What You Never Know
9) Stranger In Paradise
10) Nessun Dorma (live)
11) What A Wonderful World
12) The Journey Home
13) Time To Say GoodbyeThe cinematography is beautiful, Sarah is gorgeous, and the entire DVD is a lovely compliment to her music. As we all know, Sarah B. loves themes, lush images, and her albums have every bit to do with her imaginative sceneries as it does the music. I'll use this DVD to hold me over until the 'Harem' concert's released on DVD (which I sincerely hope happens). If only MTV played videos like this!Oh, and, yes, as another reviewer noted, Sarah does a bit of light dancing in the videos, but I must correct the statement that she's not a dancer. She was a professional dancer (a classically trained ballerina, I believe) before she ever got involved in singing, which is a fact she demonstrates wonderfully in this DVD with her grace and carriage."
"Harem" Comes Alive on this DVD
Greg | Zanesville, Ohio United States | 02/01/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I saw Sarah Brightman's Harem World Tour in Columbus, Ohio on January 27, 2004. What an amazing show!!! Sarah is truly a remarkable talent!! I bought the Harem DVD at the concert. First, the sound quality is awesome! This DVD certainly delivers if you have a surround sound system. The videos of the songs from Harem are very captivating and beautiful. Sarah performs each song with mastery and grace. The filming locations for the videos are breath-taking. There are many DVD extras that give a look at behind the scenes and interviews with Sarah. Sarah Brightman fans won't be dissappointed with this DVD. I have played it 8 times and counting!"
COLOURFUL FLAVORS AND A SILKEN DIVA VOICE
Shashank Tripathi | Gadabout | 06/04/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Sarah Brightman's ethereal voice needs no introduction. But spice her music with some vibrant rhythms of forbidden places from the mediterranean to Arabia and India, and you have an album that you'll listen many times over. Excellent collaborations and great range of sounds. The DVD itself could have accommodated so much more, it barely manages to include some still pictures, but that's a minor quibble for this absolutely fantastic purchase. Highly recommended."
Tears of joy
David Craig | Toronto, Canada | 03/18/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a tremendous DVD. I have watched it three times so far and each time it leaves me with tears of joy. Sarah has really produced a masterpiece.The most impressive part is the sound. It is not DTS but rather Dolby 5.1. However the music clarity and quality surpass almost every music DVD I own! Also, there is great use of the back speakers on many songs.The videos are all entertaining, colorful, and creative--a joy to behold.The only true negative, which one reviewer has already mentioned, is that the videos are all a bit hazy looking instead of being razor sharp. I'm not sure why they filmed it that way.Having one live concert segment thrown in also seemed a little out of place but I can live with that.In summary, I have not felt this level of excitement over a DVD in ages! WOW."