The important balance to be struck in any production of Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin is between, on the one hand, the long lyrical monologues (Tatiana's letter scene, Lensky's aria, Gremin's praise of his wife) and the c... more »rucial confrontations between Tatiana and Onegin with the more public scenes in which these private emotions evolve into tragedy and disillusion. In this European Union Opera production, Gennadi Rozhdestvensky finds this balance effortlessly. The chorus that dances its way through the small-town ball that ends in Lensky's challenge is as much a character in the tragedy as the principals. The principals are excellent, too. Orla Boylan is good both as the mature Tatiana and as the callow girl who first falls for Onegin, while Vladimir Glushchak's Onegin is a convincing object of her devotion as well as a self-pitying egoist who wrecks his own life and those of Olga and Lensky. The orchestral sound is convincing but unexciting. --Roz Kaveney« less
"This is a beautifully filmed version of Onegin. While the music is impressively lyrical, you would even forget it's an opera because it's so well filmed. Since it's a film version, there are quite a few scenes edited out from the original Tchaikovsky's score.
The film starts with peasants' chorus. The opening music and quartet are deleted, which is actually a shame because I think the quartet contains the most important key word of the story; "Heaven granted me the habit in place of happiness." Maybe the director didn't want to give it away right from the beginning. Anyway, this music is restored in the special features and you can enjoy the music without motion picture.
The production is really great. Lady Larina's estate, Prince Gremin's palace, duel scene in the snow, scenes of the country side and of St-Petersburg, etc...everything is beautifully filmed. Even Onegin and Lensky arrive on hourses in the beginning. It's not filmed in studio so nothing seems phoney. Musically, it's one of the best recordings ever made.
The image isn't much remastered, nor is the sound. You can select DTS or 2-channel stereo and subtitles in 6 languages.
This is the best version of Onegin on DVD for now.... at least till someone put the Kirov's production with Leiferkus on DVD."
Beautiful film version
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The film lasts only 117 minutes, which means almost 40 minutes of the original score is missing. Notoriously the opening theme and duet&quartet is cut out and the film start from the peasants' scene. Although, this DVD version includes the music only track of the opening. So, if you go to the bonus menu and select "prologue", it plays the opening music, duet & quartet and continues flawlessly to the film.
Some poeple complained about the scene selection. My copy of DVD works fine. It brings me to the very beginning of the act II or the act III. No problem."
russianviewer | usa | 06/26/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I really enjoyed this version of Onegin. It's more like a film than an opera. Indexing between the booklet and the DVD is 1 off, and there is a glitch in sound between tracks 12 and 13, but it is still a grat production. And I didn't have any problems navigating to Act II or Act III. What surprised me, the native Russian speaker, is that non-Russian singers sing in almost perfect Russian language."
A very good tatyana and onegin
D. Smith | Toronto, ON Canada | 10/18/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I love this. It's true that the tracks don't go where they're supposed to but I watch opera all at once. This is a film, not a stage version, and the natural settings are wonderful. The acting is very good --- the actors are NOT the singers, which I found a bit strange initially --- and the singing is excellent. THe characterisations seem very good to me. There are some cuts, which I miss: in particular at the start when Tatyana's mother and nurse sing about their acceptance of their lot, and again when her nurse speaks of her young (arranged) marriage to Tatyana. I think these are odd omissions, since this is part of the important theme for Tatyana. I would recommend this dvd."
Buy it, but close your eyes when you watch it.
russianviewer | 07/25/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I agree with everything the next viewer(dated May 31, 02)said about this DVD. I like Tchaikovsky's operas. I expected to see something Russian, but I was very disappointed. The stage design and the costume looked awlful. Only the Onegin character makes the DVD worth buying. Fat Tosca is okay, but not a Fat Tatiyana. The VHS version with Yuri Marusin and Sergei Leyferkus is definitely the 1st choice. It should be issued on DVD."