VG Picture-No Subtitles
Thomas Brogan | Redlands, Ca United States | 12/20/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I had the old VHS Version of this Glyndenbourne performance. compare to that the picture quality of the Dvd is a huge improvement. However the VHS Version had English subtitles; the DVD does not. In these days of everything in Opera having subtitles it seems very strange thatthis DVD does not. Maybe Image would have to pay extra. I do not see in the Opera listings in Amazon any consistent listing for subtitles. For me I would not want to have this if without subtitles so I seek some way of getting a refund. I do not want DVD with no subtitles"
Nancy Eckert | Bellefontaine, OH USA | 12/31/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Aside from a so-so cast, McLaughlin a stand-out as being unable to the task of Violetta, there is some really tasteless staging. Yes, the set is traditionally opulent, even fussy, but I do not need spread legs (even seen from the rear), nor a pair of unattractive breasts bouncing about. However, since this is about singing, aside from the inadequate McLaughlin is an attractive Alfredo sung by Walter MacNeil with an equally attractive but unexciting voice and the same may be said for Brent Ellis' Germont. This is not a TERRIBLE performance, but one I'll never watch again except to demonstrate to someone how Traviata should not be done. As for conductor Bernard Haitink, despite his credetials, which are considerable, if he's ever been considered a notable Verdian, I stand to be corrected."
One of Glyndebourne's best
J. Anderson | Monterey, CA USA | 01/07/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This Glyndebourne production reconfigures the grandiose in a classical, understated stage design by John Gunter, with Peter Hall's munificent eye and Glyndebourne's legendary devotion lavished rewardingly on matters musical. Glyndebourne is Marie McLaughlin's best house, I've seen her there a number of times. Her Violetta here is surely more than adequate, overall a beautifully finished performance. She's an overtly careful singer, with never hurried phrases always musically characterized. The pathos of Violetta's predicament comes ever more realised as the piece progresses. The letter scene in Act 2 is one of the more beautifully sung in available video versions. The real surprise is tenor Walter MacNeil, who sings Alfredo with notable musicianship and a magnificent instrument. This is pungent, Italianate singing you'll remember for some time! Beautiful pianissimos in some of the most passionately musical singing I've ever heard. Brent Ellis sings Giorgio Germont with royal ease and astonishing baritonal beauty. His duet with Violetta radiates with sadness, and again, like MacNeil his singing art is remarkable for its contentment with Verdi's already dramatically furnished score. These are the possibilities of opera! Haitink is his customary supportive boring self, but in an age of uber conductors 'conquering' the opera pit his approach stands the test of time, at least here. Across the board, the singing in this Traviata is excellent. My 1988 VHS version has subtitles, can't speak to the dvd transfer. Check out the used VHS prices! I've never been stiffed buying 'used' from amazon sellers. This is a worthwhile Traviata."