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Luciano Pavarotti - A Rare And Intimate Evening With Pavarotti | DVD | (17/10/2005)
from £10.21 | Saving you £4.78 (31.90%) | RRP
You are welcomed to a rare and wonderful performance that has never been previously available in the UK. Recorded in 1987 this is Pavarotti at his very finest. This concert is unique as Pavarotti performs classic songs with only his piano accompaniment giving an intimate feeling between the great legend and his audience. In this personal setting the viewer gets a rare insight into the great tenor's art form. Featuring his most popular classics such as.... Caro Mio Ben Angus Dei A
Strauss: Die Fledermaus -- Royal Opera House | DVD | (16/01/2001)
from £19.79 | Saving you £5.20 (20.80%) | RRP
Originally broadcast live by the BBC from the Royal Opera House on New Year's Eve 1990, this production of Die Fledermaus, Johann Strauss' masterpiece of comic operetta, was a truly historic occasion, marking the retirement from the stage of one of the greatest sopranos of the 20th century, Dame Joan Sutherland. Sung in English, in a version by John Mortimer, conducted by Sutherland's husband Richard Bonynge and directed for television by Humphrey Burton, this is an exceptional translation from stage to screen. The story, an elaborate farce with elements of satirical comedy set around a lavish masked ball in 19th-century Vienna comes to life through outstanding performances by a large, vivacious cast, including Judith Howarth, Nancy Gustason and Jochen Kowalski as Prince Orlofsky. Gorgeously designed, wonderfully costumed and enthusiastically played as it is, attention inevitably centres on the "special recital" by the "surprise guests": Sutherland herself, Marilyn Horne and Luciano Pavarotti. No finer, more exhilarating and touching a farewell could have been imagined. After the curtain there is a short, on-stage tribute to Sutherland by Jeremy Isaacs, bringing to a close a glorious, unforgettable evening of music-making for which the word "glittering" might have been invented. --Gary S. Dalkin On the DVD: By presenting the production on two discs the picture quality is maximised, and, by the standards of live-filmed opera, is very good indeed. The discs are presented with PCM stereo sound and a 4:3 TV ratio image. There are options for French and German subtitles, but unless trailers for two further Arthaus DVDs count, there are no extras. The booklet is well documented, though lacking the libretto. --Gary S. Dalkin
La Grande-Duchesse De Gerolstein - Offenbach | DVD | (09/01/2006)
from £10.59 | Saving you £5.40 (33.80%) | RRP
Recorded at the Theatre Du Chatelet in Paris.
Rossini: La Cenerentola (Cinderella) -- Houston | DVD | (25/06/2001)
from £8.95 | Saving you £1.60 (9.40%) | RRP
Rossini's opera recorded live in Houston in November 1995. Bruno Campanella conducts the Houston Symphony Orchestra and the Houston Grand Opera Chorus.
Fidelio - Beethoven | DVD | (19/01/2004)
from £14.63 | Saving you £2.36 (13.90%) | RRP
A performance of the Beethoven's Fidelio. James Levine conducts the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus.
100 Premiership Goals - Vol. 1 | DVD | (26/11/2007)
from £1.63 | Saving you £2.36 (59.10%) | RRP
100 Premiership Goals 15th Anniversary Edition Vol 1
Carmen - Bizet | DVD | (09/05/2005)
from £15.39 | Saving you £1.60 (9.40%) | RRP
This famous film of the world's best loved opera, directed by Herbert von Karajan, features the three greatest exponents of their respective roles at the time: Grace Bumbry's magnificently seductive-toned Carmen, Mirella Freni's ineffably lovely, touching Micaela, and Jon Vickers's thrillingly manic-depressive Don Jose.
Mozart In Turkey | DVD | (22/12/2003)
from £8.82 | Saving you £4.50 (22.50%) | RRP
Mozart in Turkey is a feature-length 88-minute hybrid BBC co-production which interleaves making-of documentary footage (24 minutes) and filmed highlights (64 minutes) from Mozart's opera Die Entführung aus dem Serail ("The Abduction from the Seraglio"). Working to their pre-recorded performance of the complete opera conducted by leading Mozartian Sir Charles Mackerras with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Choir, we see the cast mime to playback key arias, duets and quartets from Mozart's gorgeous work. The story of a Spanish noble woman, Konstanze (soprano Yelda Kodalli), her English maid, Blonde (soprano Désirée Rancatore), fiancé, Belmonte (tenor Paul Groves) and his servant, Pedrillo (tenor Lynton Atkinson) in the Turkish Harem of Pasha Selim (Oliver Tobias in a speaking role) is beautifully filmed in the famous Topkapi Palace in Istanbul. The documentary sections offer a brief, rather superficial look at Mozart's writing of the opera and the ideas that influenced it and are expressed within the drama. The music-making is hardly to be faulted and the staging is ravishing. Unfortunately the whole seems like an over-length DVD extra that should accompany a complete film of the opera--the very thing that is mysteriously missing from this release. On the DVD Mozart in Turkey is presented anamorphically, enhanced at 16:9 for widescreen televisions, with a virtually flawless picture taken, presumably, from digital tape. If the programme is watched complete the sound is stereo only and the music sometimes sounds harsh. If music highlights are selected, sound is available in stereo or a much fuller and more rounded Dolby Digital 5.1. There are optional subtitles in English, German, Spanish, French and Dutch, but if any of these is selected it is imposed over the English-language documentary sections as well as the German-language opera scenes. When playing music highlights there are rather abrupt and unmusical fades in and out between scenes. The menu is awful, offering the option either to play all or select a given track, but not to play from a particular scene onwards. Switching subtitles on or off, or changing audio tracks, entails returning to the main menu then starting the programme afresh. There is no resume play facility and there are no extras. --Gary S Dalkin
Mozart: Don Giovanni -- Zurich/Harnoncourt | DVD | (12/03/2002)
from £11.03 | Saving you £N/A (N/A%) | RRP
In this Zurich Opera House staging of Mozart’s darkly comic cautionary fable Don Giovanni the lighting and stage design keep the characters shaded in half-shadow: even Zerlina’s wedding feels like a subdued affair here, and the Don’s banqueting room is a suitably gloomy venue for the Stone Guest’s climactic visit for a spot of dinner and damnation. Both this staging and video director Brian Large’s filming play no tricks with the audience’s expectations, opting for a largely traditional presentation of this tragedy of swaggering bravado, cuckolded lovers and revenge from beyond the grave. Nikolaus Harnoncourt brings all the sensitivity of his historically informed approach to the orchestra pit. Heading a very strong cast are Rodney Gilfry, defiantly strong-voiced but also haughtily handsome as the seducing Don, and Cecilia Bartoli, a mercurial presence as Donna Elvira. Their scenes together crackle and fizz, even when Bartoli’s extremely ripe vibrato contrasts a little uncomfortably with Harnoncourt’s authenticity. Liliana Nikiteanu makes for a pretty, naïve Zerlina, convincingly torn between her Masetto (Oliver Widmer) and the animalistic attraction of the Don. Laszlo Polgar’s Leporello is wheedling and base, but still the inheritor of his master’s charisma; Isabel Rey and Roberto Sacca are solid as the colourless moralists Anna and Ottavio; while Matti Salminen’s powerful Commendatore isn’t expected to do anything more than stand still and declaim. Overall this is an excellent musical performance, unexceptionally staged. On the DVD: Don Giovanni on disc has a good 24-minute "Behind the Scenes" feature, including interviews with Cecilia Bartoli, Harnoncourt, Gilfry and Isabel Rey. There’s also a trailer for other ArtHaus releases. The 16:9 picture sometimes struggles to bring definition to the dimly lit sets; sound though is crisp and clean PCM stereo or Dolby 5.1. There are subtitles in five languages. --Mark Walker
Le Comte Ory - Glyndebourne Festival Opera | DVD | (27/06/2005)
from £11.82 | Saving you £6.17 (34.30%) | RRP
Set in rural France at the time of the crusades Rossini's last comic opera is the saucy tale of Le Comte Ory and his pursuit of the crusaders' wives who chastely await the return of their menfolk. This acclaimed production was recorded at Glyndebourne during the 1997 season with the delectable French soprano Annick Masis as Adele the Belgian tenor Marc Laho as the lecherous Comte Ory and Diana Montague as the amorous page Isolier. Jerome Savary's sparkling production includes a sensuous bathing scene and a riotous banquet with the male singer disguised as nuns. Andrew Davis conducts the London Philharmonic.
Die Entfuhrung Aus Dem Serail - The Royal Opera - Mozart | DVD | (01/11/1997)
from £10.59 | Saving you £7.40 (41.10%) | RRP
Mozart's comic masterpiece is set in a Turkish palace and tells the exciting and amusing story of the 'escape from the harem'. In this acclaimed production from The Royal Opera by Elijah Moshinsky filmed in 1988 the Turkish atmosphere is created by Timothy O'Brien's imaginative set of garden and crumbling palace strikingly complemented by Sir Sidney Nolan's colourful front and backcloths. The Spanish nobleman Belmonte is ably sung by Deon van der Walt and his beloved Konstanze is sung by Inga Nielsen with both dramatic conviction and brilliant secure coloratura. The actor Oliver Tobias gives a sensuous and powerful performance in the speaking role of Pasha Selim and Lillian Watson is a charming Blonde.
Conspiracy Theories | DVD | (25/06/2007)
from £N/A | Saving you £N/A (N/A%) | RRP
Uncovering some of history's most intriguing mysteries
Motorhead - the Birthday Party | DVD | (21/07/2008)
from £6.39 | Saving you £4.60 (41.90%) | RRP
We are Motorhead and we're gonna kick your ass! has become a legendary sentence that Lemmy bellows out as an opener for every Motorhead live show. It all started in 1975 when bassist/singer Lemmy formed his own group Motorhead with two of his buddies after he had been sacked from the psychedelic hard rock outfit Hawkwind. Named after the last song Lemmy had written for Hawkwind Motorhead set out to conquer the globe with their own version of high speed rock 'n' roll. In 1985 The World's Loudest and Hardest Band rocked the legendary Hammersmith Odeon in London. Even then their motto was: a guitar riff shouldn't be longer than it takes to open a bottle of beer. Tracklist: 1. Iron Fist 2. Stay Clean 3. The Hammer 4. Metropolis 5. Mean Machine 6. On The Road 7. Killed By Death 8. Ace Of Spades 9. Steal Your Face 10. Nothing Up My Sleeve 11. We Are The Road Crew 12. Bite The Bullett 13. The Chase Is Better Than The Catch 14. No Class 15. Overkill 16. Bomber 17. Motrhead
Janacek: Jenufa -- Glyndebourne | DVD | (22/06/2001)
from £20.05 | Saving you £4.94 (19.80%) | RRP
Janacek's masterpiece Jenufa, captured in this 1989 Glyndebourne Festival Opera production, is among the most revived modernist works. Compared with much grand opera, the story of one woman's struggle to rise free from social constraints at a terrible cost is remarkably poignant, credible and accessible. Scenes are short and intense. The music shimmers with Janacek's characteristic blend of sweetness and sharp dissonance. His men are damaged and angry; his women kick against the expectations of convention. Tragedy is inevitable, but here, unusually, hope triumphs. In the title role, Roberta Alexander is utterly convincing as the stepdaughter of the Kostelnicka Buryja, placing her love and trust in the wrong man with dire consequences. As the Kostelnicka, Anja Silja turns in an equally towering performance, unravelling with the awful consequences of her pragmatism. Alexander's fluid soprano reveals the extraordinary beauty of some of Janacek's finest arias: the moment when she becomes supernaturally aware of her baby's fate--it's "as if death was peering into the house!"--and is actually singing prayers for its soul is quite overwhelming. This Jenufa is sung splendidly; a revelation of the essential humanity which lurks at the heart of the greatest operas. On the DVD: This production was filmed for Channel 4 and has all the hallmarks of a 1980s television broadcast: standard 4:3 picture format which limits the impact of Tobias Hoheisel's magnificent expressionistic set; PCM stereo which somewhat dulls Andrew Davis' sterling, powerful work at the helm of the London Philharmonic Orchestra (although the principal singers shine through); poor subtitles; and static freeze-frame links between scenes. As a record of an important production, though, it suffices. --Piers Ford
Ernani - Giuseppe Verdi - Teatro Alla Scala | DVD | (06/09/2004)
from £12.99 | Saving you £3.71 (20.60%) | RRP
The hugely successful production of Verdi's romantic drama Ernani features four legendary opera stars: Placido Damingo Mirella Freni Renato Bruson and Nicolai Ghiaurov all at the height of their powers. They were described in The Times review as 'possibly the best quartet of singers any opera house has managed to assemble this year'. They give an impassioned electric performance under the conductor Riccardo Muti an acclaimed Verdi interpreter. The producer Luca Ranconi has cre
Mozart: Don Giovanni -- Vienna/Furtwangler | DVD | (08/10/2004)
from £10.37 | Saving you £3.62 (25.90%) | RRP
The incomparable Cesare Siepi stars in this legendary Salzburg production of Mozart's masterpiece. Wilhelm Furtwangler conducts the internationally renowned Vienna Philharmonic in what has become one of the definitive productions of a classic opera.
Turandot - Puccini | DVD | (27/02/2006)
from £10.29 | Saving you £4.70 (31.40%) | RRP
In the Imperial Palace of Peking the Emperor announces that any prince seeking to marry his daughter Turandot must first answer three riddles. Prince Calaf falls immediately in love with Turandot and successfully answers all three. However before the Prince marries Turandot he asks her a riddle of his own.
Don Giovanni - Mozart | DVD | (13/06/2005)
from £N/A | Saving you £N/A (N/A%) | RRP
Though performed in the original Peter Sellars' production of Don Giovanni relocates Mozart's dramatic morality-tale to the dark streets of Harlem deep within the turbulent world of late-twentieth-century America.
Hammers Over the Anvil | DVD | (21/04/2008)
from £3.00 | Saving you £-2.99 (-59.90%) | RRP
Rosenkavalier - Strauss | DVD | (15/08/2005)
from £18.65 | Saving you £-3.66 (-24.40%) | RRP
Comedy for music in three acts.