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Olivia Newton-John and The Sydney Symphony Orchestra: Live at the Sydney Opera House

Price: CDN$ 23.98 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Olivia Newton-John, Sydney Symphony Orchestra
  • Format: Color, DVD-Video, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Studio: EMI America
  • Release Date: Jan. 15 2008
  • Run Time: 127 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #43,728 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

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Most helpful customer reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Martin A Hogan TOP 100 REVIEWER on May 24 2009
Format: DVD
A concert at the Sydney Opera House with a full symphony and twenty-seven songs is a sure fire hit. Even if Olivia's gold sequined pant-suit is questionable, she looks and sounds great. Only a few times were those high notes a bit of a stretch, but for someone her age, the vocals were more than satisfying and the show was absolutely professional.

"Have You Never Been Mellow" opens the act and proceeds with songs from `Xanadu' before Olivia does a series of her country-flavored songs, including her first big hit, "If Not For You". A slow version of "Psychical" is extremely interesting and her own penned song, "Not Gonna Give In To It", a response from her battle with breast cancer. Mixing slow ballads ("Cry Me A River") with faster numbers ("Twist Of Fate"), the show completely entertains. The symphony adds an enormous element of power to the show with several symphonic song introductions.

"Tenterfield Saddler", a song written by Peter Allen is sung with pure emotion, as is the other Allen song, "I Honestly Love You". Of course, towards the end of the concert, Olivia plays with the audience and her band members by going through some of the bigger hits from "Grease" with a great rousing rendition of, "You're The One That I Want" and a fun, "Summer Nights". Concluding with the song version of the `Serenity' prayer, Olivia Newton-John brings home the goods.

The concert is a five-star, but this DVD I have to give less to. More than often, DVD Concerts mix interviews' in between concert songs, interrupting the excitement or mood of the entire experience. In between every song, we are witness to Olivia giving us a tour of Sydney, meeting fans and having fun, but this should have been a separate `extra' on the DVD. Still, this is a great experience and is in 5.1 surround for that feeling of "being there".
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Format: DVD
Incroyable mais vrai! Olivia Newton-John est au début de la soixantaine mais sur la scene elle est d'une grande énergie. Ce dvd nous la montre dans une forme resplendissante; filmé dans un endroit magnifique "The Sidney Opera House" le spectacle se déroule dans un train d'enfer car la chanteuse enchaine succes par dessus succes et ce qui m'a le plus frappé c'est qu'elle a l'air d'etre tres heureuse de chanter devant le public qui l'aime tellement car il faut se rappeler que le spectacle se déroule en Australie et que l'Australie c'est pas mal chez-elle. Les chansons sont entrecoupées de petits clips ou Olivia nous fait visiter Sidney.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Hallman on Jan. 18 2008
Format: DVD
A true gem for fans of Olivia. She puts on such a class act at the Sydney Opera House with her own style and humor. I really enjoyed the clips between the songs when she takes the band on a romp through Sydney and the ferry to Manly beach. There are many hilarious moments along the way. Enjoy!!!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By chuck canuk on March 7 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
this concert is incredible. The sound is the best I've heard on a music DVD and I own over 50. The widescreen transfer is pristine and features many beautiful scenes of Sydney, narrated by Olivia. The orchestra produces majestic background music along with Olivia's own back-up singers and musicians. Her lead guitarist is outstanding. This is excellent value for 28 great songs....a must have DVD for music lovers.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 64 reviews
42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
I. Was. Blown. Away. Tonight. Jan. 15 2008
By the astral agent - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
I had seen some teasers of this concert on PBS and thought it looked pretty tight, so I was hopeful it would be better than the pretty-good concert Olivia put out in limited release from 2002. MY how she has grown in confidence since then! She was really at ease with ALL of her musical styles here, and with the audience, and with her band.

For those who have seen her live in this century (haha, but quite seriously), you know she has stuck with a particular musicians in her band line-up at guitar & backing vocals & a multi-instrumentalist. Well, they have all improved together over the years, and she splits her vocal duets with all of them plus a video with peter allen (RIP) that is quite dramatic instead of what you'd think (cheesy) -- it came off like a beautiful surreal movie. Step back Babs Streisand, theres a superior mature female vocalist with wider musical range of selection and a purer heart! Olivia is just in her finest form!

Not only do the duets remind you what a skilled duets singer she is -- she has an entirely unique ability to blend her voice with others, always giving them the space to excel while quietly creating the whole landscape on which the feeling of the song sits! But its clear she gets on with the band so well, and they ALL clearly LIKE each other and "Get it" about Olivia, and help support her being the best she can be. You are not watching a concert of a group that is just there to get their paycheck and join the next artist's tour. They are ALL on board just for Olivia, and over the last 8 years, their loyalty has turned up real gold in their performances together. I dont say this because "thats nice" but because it makes for great collaborative music. Add in the lush Sydney Symphony Orchestra, and you have a classic.

You also get to feel the genuine gratitude not only for a fellow Aussie music legend, Peter Allen -- who was married for 7 years to Liza Minnelli before coming out gay in 1974, the year he wrote one of Olivia's definitive songs "I Honestly Love You" -- Their "Tenderfield Saddler" duet here was a big payback, and added just another transcendent dimension to this amazing concert.

But I guess the main thing to point out here is that Livvy is in a really good place, as her recent recordings bear proof. Though oddly, I am saying all of this without any representation on this DVD from 3 of my very favorite Newton-John albums in this concert (Totally Hot, Back with a Heart, and Grace & Gratitude), the show is so superb, you can understand the choices perfectly. She didnt need those 3 albums to still spin out this masterpiece.

For someone with 30 (THIRTY!) top 40 hits in their career, it is easy to become a slave to your past success, merely a showcase for your hits. In fact, thats almost the rule among pop/rock performers. But Olivia has turned that around: Her hits are merely showcasing HER. She has emerged - at almost 60 years of age - as an agelessly powerful singer, writer, interpreter & performer, who is still entirely present, and not at all sheepishly digging up the past. This is really really impressive stuff.

So if you're thinking "Maybe" about adding this to your dvd collection, then I can pretty much promise you, the answer is YES ... you should get it.
26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
A Great Career Retrospective, Done LIVE! Jan. 16 2008
By KRA - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
The greatest test of a singer is how they sing live, and hopefully with no pre-recorded tracks and amplified back-tracking. That said it seems that a number of singers who came of age in the 1970's are the ones who continue to deliver the goods live.

Olivia is a real life survivor, and here she is backed by not only the Sydney Symphony, but her own tight band and real live back-up vocalists. Sometimes artists have the urge to delv into the world of cover songs, or sing a lot of new material, here Olivia stands by the age tested showbiz saying, give the people want they want.

In a very polished, and classy way, she delivers the hits from all phases are her long career. Have You Ever Been Mellow, and a medley of her Country hits, such as Let Me Be There, do justice to her early years, and although the film of Xanadu was not a hit, the soundtrack was, and she shows us why.

Physical, from the album of the same name, and her biggest seller todate, gets a revamp here, but the playfullnes of the song remains, as it does on Make A Move On Me.

Grease is well represented here (as it should be), and these songs never seem to grow old, and I doubt they ever will. A star in his own right, Warren Ham, fills in for John Travolta, and frankly sings better than Mr. Travolta ever could.

Olivia closes the show with the beautiful ballad, I Honesty Love You, a song written by fellow Australian, the late, great, Peter Allen. Like a number of her peers, Ms. Newton-John could just as easily sit home and watch the royalty checks come in, instead she continues to dazzle her fans and gain new ones. A class act indeed!

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
As Beautiful As Ever Dec 14 2007
By R. C. Bourassa - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
I haven't heard much from Olivia in the past decade or so. That is until I stumbled across a PBS special Live at the Sydney Opera. She not only looks incredible, but sounds exactly the same as she did when I saw Grease. I actually pre-ordered this DVD as a result of seeing this special. GOD she looks and sounds great and thank GOD I saw this, I forgot I was madly in love with her.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Beautiful DVD! Dec 27 2007
By Pam Simpson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
I have had the pleasure of getting this DVD early. This DVD is perfect for all Olivia fans! She not only performs her number one hits, she performs songs off of her 2005 release "Stronger Then Before." The behind-the-scenes of Olivia walking around in Sydney are such a joy to see. All in all this DVD is perfect!
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Olivia Still Asks If You've Ever Been Mellow, and the Answer Is Indeed Yes March 24 2008
By Ed Uyeshima - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
I have to admit it's taken me years to warm up to Olivia Newton-John as I originally wrote her off as the most pre-packaged of pop singers with her breathy voice and her Breck-girl prettiness. However, there is no denying her longevity in such an unforgiving business. When I saw the stage version of Xanadu on Broadway in December, it was as much a tribute to her as it was to the surreal travesty the movie is. It's been nearly four decades since her first stateside success, a twangy cover of Bob Dylan's "If Not for You", which she performs here as the lead-off to a sit-down medley of her country hits. Capturing her at the Sydney Opera House in March 2006, this concert DVD gives testament to her enduring career, and at a slightly cosmetically altered 57, her slightly throatier voice may have lost some of the higher notes but still maintains the pop sheen she's always had.

Olivia's set is pretty extensive with 27 songs over the course of its 127-minute running time, long by most concert standards although there is filler in the form of random home-movie video clips of her trip to Sydney. Obviously, she has a wealth of musical material from which to cull, so it's a tribute to her that her repertoire is so varied. Most of the songs remain true to the original arrangements, although a few have been dramatically changed like the anachronistically samba-sized version of "Physical". The only times where Olivia falters is on the songs that require her early-years tremolo like the opener, "Have You Never Been Mellow?", where you can hear the strain. Otherwise, she is quite relaxed, perhaps too much so as her sometimes intimate delivery appears at odds with the cavernous opera house.

As her fans would demand, Olivia and her back-up singers cover the soundtracks of Grease and Xanadu pretty thoroughly, and their good spirits are infectious even if the approach is a bit karaoke (especially with the feather boas). She is candid with her early 1990's bout with breast cancer on the upbeat "Not Gonna Give In to It" and even does a Natalie Cole-style duet with a video of the late Peter Allen on his poignant ballad, "Tenterfield Saddler". Her patter can come across as a bit canned. However, unlike Cher or Celine Dion, who fill their shows with extravagant costume changes, gymnastic dancers and smoky special effects, Olivia relies almost solely on her sincere delivery, which may make this concert a bit of a stretch for non-fans. There is a big-screen behind her to remind people of her career highlights, but it's shown rather incidentally. The 2008 DVD could have provided more extras, but it would be difficult to begrudge a pop princess who doesn't look ready to descend her throne.

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