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Opera

  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Don Giovanni Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Don Giovanni | DVD | (28/08/2006) from £9.48  |  Saving you £20.51 (68.40%)  |  RRP £29.99

    Lluis Pasqual's powerful new production for the Spanish capital sets Da Ponte's timeless story of sleaze and seduction into the dark world of 1940s Spain. Carlos Alvarez, in the title role, toys with the affections of Donna Anna, Zerlina and the Spanish lady Donna Elvira, before his overpowering methods finally bring his own destruction. Filmed with high definition cameras and true surround sound.

  • Wagner: Das Rheingold -- Metropolitan/Levine Wagner: Das Rheingold -- Metropolitan/Levine | DVD | (14/10/2002) from £16.99  |  Saving you £0.00 (0.00%)  |  RRP £16.99

    It takes a certain amount of forethought if Das Rheingold is to be more than a series of special effects scenes, though moments like the appearance of the giants through the mist or Alberich's transformations need to be as thrilling as they are here. As always in his Wagner, and perhaps especially in this very traditional 1990 Metropolitan Opera production of the Ring cycle, James Levine keeps to the forefront the underlying humanity of Wagner's gods and monsters. In the first scene, for example, he brings out the thoughtless, callous frivolity of the Rhine maidens as they precipitate the events of the four operas by taunting the gnome Alberich: it helps that they swirl around, green and gold, in a convincing representation of the bottom of the Rhine, but the emotions are the point. Ekkehaard Wlaschiha is a convincingly menacing Alberich partly because Levine brings out his vulnerability as well as his evil temper. James Morris is splendid as the younger less care-worn Wotan and Siegfried Jerusalem as Loge enjoys the sarcasm of his cynical commentary on Wotan's aspirations. The smaller parts have luxury casting: Matti Salminen as Fafner and Christa Ludwig as Fricka, for example. On the DVD: Das Rheingold comes with a photo gallery of the Metropolitan Opera production and with menus and subtitles in German, French, English, Spanish and Chinese. Disappointingly though it is presented in American NTSC format with standard TV 4:3 visual ratio. But it does have an excellent clear acoustic in all three of its audio options: PCM stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS 5.1. --Roz Kaveney

  • Nabucco - Arena Di Verona [1981] Nabucco - Arena Di Verona | DVD | (25/07/2005) from £12.09  |  Saving you £5.90 (32.80%)  |  RRP £17.99

    Nabucco was Verdi's first real success and its nationalistic theme of yearning for freedom made it highly popular in an Italy of 1842 under Austrian rule. The great chorus of the exiled Hebrews 'Va pensiero' has become one of the best-loved of operatic melodies and made Verdi the voice of the Italian people. This performance was recorded in Verona in 1981 where the huge open-air Roman Arena provides a magnificent setting for this vast and spectacular opera. The great baritone Renat

  • Verdi: Aida -- La Scala [1986] Verdi: Aida -- La Scala | DVD | (28/08/2000) from £18.99  |  Saving you £1.00 (5.00%)  |  RRP £19.99

    La Scala went all-out for its 1986 production of this grandest of grand operas, with a strong cast and--most important for a video recording--a larger-than-life staging. The Triumph Scene in Act II is by no means Aida's only attraction, but it is the part that makes the strongest and most lasting impression and it is the visual and musical climax of this production. Stage director Ronconi brings on a procession to dwarf all processions: looted treasures, heroic statuary, miserable captives struggling under the lash of whip-bearing slave-drivers. On par with these visuals is Lorin Maazel's first-class performance of the popular "Grand March" with the outstanding La Scala chorus and orchestra. In Act III, the contrasting tranquillity of the Nile Scene also gets a visual treatment to match the music's qualities.When it is not an epic spectacle, Aida is a tragic story of love, jealousy and horrible revenge. The shifting focus between vast spectacle and intimate moments-sometimes awkward in a live performance onstage--presents special opportunities and challenges for a video recording. In this Aida, the camera work shows an acute awareness of those opportunities and challenges. The soloists have a variety of strengths that outweigh a few small weaknesses. Luciano Pavarotti sings one of his signature roles in superb voice, but his weight problems are visually evident and detract from his impact as the dashing hero Radames. Maria Chiara has moments of vocal imperfection but gives a dramatically compelling performance. Ghena Dimitrova sings powerfully and the supporting cast is excellent throughout. --Joe McLellan, Amazon.com

  • Prince Igor [1998] Prince Igor | DVD | (06/10/2003) from £18.65  |  Saving you £-3.66 (-24.40%)  |  RRP £14.99

    Borodin's opera 'Prince Igor' performed by the Kirov Opera and Ballet. Tracklisting; Act 1 No. 2 Chorus of the Polovstan Maidens no. 3 Dance of the Polovtsian Maidens No. 4 Cavatina No. 6 recitative & Cavatina No. 7 Duet no. 8 Aria No. 9 Scena No.10 Aria No. 11 Recitative No. 12 Polovstian Dances & Chorus. Act 2 - No. 13a-c Chorus & Song No.13d-e Maidens Chorus & Scena No. 13f-g Song in Honour of Prince Galitsky Act 2 - No. 14 Arioso No. 15 Scena No.16 Scene No. 17 Fin

  • Otello - Verdi Otello - Verdi | DVD | (12/04/2004) from £15.39  |  Saving you £1.60 (9.40%)  |  RRP £16.99

    Filmed at the Metropolitan Opera House in 1995 this rendition of Verdi's 'Otello' is beautifully crafted by leading stars Placido Domingo and Renee Fleming. This was the first major success for Fleming at the Met and as this release illustrates she tackled the character of Desdemona wonderfully.

  • Peter Grimes Peter Grimes | DVD | (22/09/2003) from £12.09  |  Saving you £5.90 (32.80%)  |  RRP £17.99

    Benjamin Britten's powerful opera 'Peter Grimes' is considered to be one of the masterpieces of the 20th century. In this famous production by Elijah Moshinsky for The Royal Opera Canadian tenor Jon Vickers stars as the complex and misunderstood fisherman. The conductor is Sir Colin Davis who worked for several years with the cast of this production resulting in a masterly interweaving of characters in this gripping drama. ""One of the most riveting operatic impersonations o

  • Pietro Mascagni - Nerone Pietro Mascagni - Nerone | DVD | (05/07/2004) from £10.39  |  Saving you £2.60 (20.00%)  |  RRP £12.99

    A production of the opera 'Nerone' filmed in the Great Thermae at Emperor Adrian's Villa in Rome.

  • Tannhauser - Wagner Tannhauser - Wagner | DVD | (17/01/2005) from £20.98  |  Saving you £-4.99 (-31.20%)  |  RRP £15.99

    This newest release in the EMI Classics Opera on DVD series is a stunning production of Wagner's masterpiece Tannhauser from the Zurich Opera conducted by Franz Welser-Most featuring Peter Sieffert as Tannhauser Solveig Kringelborn as Elisabeth and Thomas Hampson as Von Eschenbach. Initially produced in Dresden in 1845 Tannhauser provoked by a few ardent friends and admirers among them Schumann and Liszt. The history of the Zurich Opera is rich in cultural highlights: in 1913 Wag

  • The Art Of Singing - Golden Voices Of The Century [1996] The Art Of Singing - Golden Voices Of The Century | DVD | (01/07/2000) from £16.25  |  Saving you £1.74 (9.70%)  |  RRP £17.99

    Many illustrious stars of the twentieth century are featured in sound and vision in rare footage much of it previously unavailable. The accompanying booklet includes comprehensive notes by John Steane. Includes rare footage much of it previously unseen. Based on an original BBC TV series.

  • Yes - the Gates of Q.P.R. Vol. 2 Yes - the Gates of Q.P.R. Vol. 2 | DVD | (21/07/2008) from £N/A  |  Saving you £N/A (N/A%)  |  RRP £10.99

    In the 1970s Yes were among the most recognized representatives of progressive rock joined by the likes of Genesis Emerson Lake & Palmer and King Crimson. Those bands often referred to as the Big Four of prog rock set the tone for the genre their influence remaining undiminished to date. During their Relayer Tour Yes played a total of 89 concerts between November 1974 and August 1975 including this one at London's Queen's Park football stadium before a crowd of 25 000. At that time immediately following the release of Relayer (arguably their best and most ambitious album ever) Yes were on the peak of their career. Tracklist: 1. And You & I 2. Cord Of Life 3. Eclipse 4. The Preacher/The Teacher 5. Apocalypse 6. Ritual 7. Round About 8. Sweet Dreams 9. Yours Is No Disgrace

  • Strauss: Die Fledermaus -- Royal Opera House [1977] Strauss: Die Fledermaus -- Royal Opera House | DVD | (16/01/2001) from £19.79  |  Saving you £5.20 (20.80%)  |  RRP £24.99

    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

  • Lesley Garrett - Desert Dreams [2003] Lesley Garrett - Desert Dreams | DVD | (12/07/2004) from £16.15  |  Saving you £-5.26 (-32.90%)  |  RRP £15.99

    Lesley Garrett is the focus of a small performing troupe who choose the desert as their stage. With songs and arias from the Barogue period to the modern day she brings this stark mysterious location to life.Tracklisting01. Soave Sia Il Vento02. If Music Be The Food Of Love03. Stabat Mater - 1st movement04. O Delle Mie Speranze05. Dido's Lament06. Where The Bee Sucks07. Song To The Moon08. Apres Un Reve09. Sure On This Shinin

  • Manon [1982] Manon | DVD | (01/07/2000) from £9.80  |  Saving you £8.19 (45.50%)  |  RRP £17.99

    Kenneth MacMillan's tragic lyric ballet to sumptuous music by Jules Massenet orchestrated for the ballet by Leighton Lucas is a Royal Opera House favourite returning season after season. The story of Manon Lescaut is a moving tale of corrupted innocence in early 18th century Paris in which the lovely girl finds both happiness and grief at the hands of men who love and abuse her. Manon is one of MacMillan's most highly regarded works featuring several passionate and moving pas

  • Don Giovanni - Mozart [2002] Don Giovanni - Mozart | DVD | (30/01/2006) from £8.94  |  Saving you £10.93 (36.40%)  |  RRP £29.99

    Calixto Bieto's famously controversial 2002 production of Mozart's great opera sets the action in the late twentieth century and brings to life an ancient story brilliantly retold. Bertrand de Billy conducts an energetic cast by Wojtek Drabowicz in the title role with the Liceu's Orchestra Academy.

  • Offenbach: Des Contes D'Hoffmann [1993] Offenbach: Des Contes D'Hoffmann | DVD | (25/04/2001) from £9.99  |  Saving you £4.94 (19.80%)  |  RRP £24.99

    Unfortunately the qualities that make Jacques Offenbach's operetta The Tales of Hoffmann an irresistible melodic profusion of wit, dash and unfailing high spirits are only in evidence in the playing of the Lyon Opera Orchestra under Kent Nagano: operetta, more than its serious cousin, continues to be fair game for the whims of producers and designers. In this case an excellent cast including Daniel Galvez-Vallejo as Hoffmann, Natalie Dessay as Olympia, Brigitte Balley as Nicklausse and Isabelle Vernet as Giulietta, as well as Gabriel Bacquier who sings three roles, are obliged to perform Offenbach's operetta in a lunatic asylum designed by Philippe Starck as a three-dimensional grey set, topped with barbed wire. The production by Louis Erlo adapts and cuts scenes to fit this concept, so the tavern scene where Hoffmann sings his celebrated number "The Legend of Kleinzack" disappears, as do the chorus who are banished to the wings. In this environment there's no room for charm or even a kind of mad-hatter behaviour. The cast are reduced to stereotypes and of necessity singularly unlovable ones. What a wasted opportunity. The sound is excellent as it is on two fillers: a short film of Penderecki conducting his choral work, The Seven Gates to Jerusalem from the Midem festival at Cannes and a trailer for a Lyon Opera House production of Berlioz's Damnation of Faust. --Adrian Edwards

  • Don Giovanni - Mozart Don Giovanni - Mozart | DVD | (14/03/2005) from £9.75  |  Saving you £7.00 (31.80%)  |  RRP £21.99

    The Opera Don Giovanni drama in two acts.

  • The Opera Gala - Live From Baden-Baden The Opera Gala - Live From Baden-Baden | DVD | (22/10/2007) from £14.78  |  Saving you £2.21 (13.00%)  |  RRP £16.99

    The new faces of opera present opera favourites in a glamorous live concert recording: Anna Netrebko El'na Garan''a Ram''n Vargas and the highly acclaimed young French baritone Ludovic T''zier sing a wide range of Italian and French opera arias. This recording features highlights from three gala concerts (28 & 31 July 3 August 2007) at Baden-Baden's Festspielhaus - surely the hottest event of the summer!

  • The Golden Ring - Wiener Philharmoniker/Sir Georg Solti The Golden Ring - Wiener Philharmoniker/Sir Georg Solti | DVD | (11/06/2007) from £15.39  |  Saving you £-1.40 (-10.00%)  |  RRP £13.99

    The legendary 1965 BBC film on the pioneering recording by Sir Georg Solti of Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen. Filmed during the recording of Gotterdammerung in the Sofiensale with the Vienna Philharmonic, it features performances by the great Wagner singers Birgit Nilsson, Wolfgang Windgassen, Gottlob Frick, and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. The DVD also includes ORF's German-language version of the programme (Hinter den Kulissen der Gotterdammerung) featuring different interview footage with Sir Georg Solti.

  • Carmen - Bizet [1967] Carmen - Bizet | DVD | (09/05/2005) from £15.39  |  Saving you £1.60 (9.40%)  |  RRP £16.99

    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.

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