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Riverdance Live/N.Y.

3.9 out of 5 stars 67 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Jean Butler, Colin Dunne, María Pagés, Katie McMahon, Morgan Crowley
  • Directors: John McColgan
  • Producers: Moya Doherty
  • Format: NTSC
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Columbia/Tristar Vid
  • VHS Release Date: Oct. 2 2001
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars 67 customer reviews
  • ASIN: 0800199855
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #5,255 in Video (See Top 100 in Video)
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Product Description


The Irish hard-shoe sensation Riverdance underwent its second incarnation with Live from New York City, a 1996 performance filmed at Radio City Music Hall. The dazzling choreography and energetic score remain, but Michael Flatley was replaced by less-flamboyant Colin Dunne, a superb technician who works well with Flatley's former co-lead, Jean Butler.

About a half-hour longer than the 1995 original, Live from New York City expands upon the second act's theme of the Irish leaving their homeland for other parts of the world. In the most engaging new number, "Trading Taps," a trio of Irish dancers faces off against two urban American tappers. While much of this show will be familiar, it's different enough to be enjoyed on its own terms. It's also more stylishly shot, but that's also its biggest drawback--frenetic editing that allows only brief glimpses of the dancers and leaves the viewer dizzy. --David Horiuchi --This text refers to the DVD edition.

Special Features

The DVD offers a minimally informative 11-minute promotional video consisting mostly of performance clips and a text version of the story, numerous text biographies of the performers (including instrumentalists), Dolby Digital 5.0 and 2.0 sound, and an anamorphic widescreen picture. Inconveniently, the disc is two-sided, with one act on each side. --David Horiuchi --This text refers to the DVD edition.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Terrific performance. Choppy editing. I was looking forward to getting this wide screen Superbit DVD. What a disappointment! First of all, it's not wide screen--it's actually SHORT screen. On a wide screen TV it takes less space than a "full screen" 4:3 DVD or VHS tape. That is, large black bands on the sides and narrower black bands on the top and bottom. One can try the "zoom" function on the TV, but with two unfortunate consequences: You lose the top and bottom of the pucture and you make the already very poor definition picture even worse. Superbit indeed! In short, though described as "anamorphic" on the box, it surely is NOT. It's extremely fuzzy on my 50" monitor, much more so than almost any of the many dance DVDs that we own. As another reviewer suggested, they could have produced this travesty by simply copying a VHS tape. Superbit? Forget it!
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Format: DVD
I have a previous version of this DVD. However it is two side and not convenient. I wait for a new version like this one for a long time. Unfortunately, this "Superbit" DVD picture quality is not good. I fully agree the review of another reviewer on Dec/17/2003. The only benefit I got from this DVD is "One Side".
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Format: DVD
This is riverdance, it's a phenomenom - serious marketing, lots of touring companies, good music, Eileen Ivers, Micheal Flattery, etc. You'd think with all this money and talent they'd have a clue how to make a DVD of it!
First off - the music and dancing is pretty good; I personally think it's overproduced and overdramatized, but my wife and son just LOVED it.
With that out of the way - I don't think it would be possible to make a more jumpy production - they didn't keep the same camera angle for more that 10 seconds thruout the whole thing. And half the time they showed just the top half of the irish dancers. Well, THAT part doesn't move! at LEAST show the feet!
I can kinda see it for a VHS tape, but this is a DVD - ever hear of multiple viewpoints? I'm sure they just dumped the VHS off to DVD without doing much to it - make some extra money and all that, but if they'd taken some care they could have had a WONDERFUL product and I wouldn't feel quite so seasick!
OK, if you made it this far - if you saw and loved Riverdance, well, until they make a REAL DVD production, ya might as well buy this one! The production seems to match what Riverdance is all about, lots of flash! If you haven't seen it - your best bet would be go SEE riverdance first so you can appreciate it, THEN buy this DVD!
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Format: DVD
The Flatley-vs.-Dunne controversy finds us enjoying both versions of the show greatly. Yes, Flatley is more of an extrovert than Colin Dunne; Flatley is a one-of-a-kind performer/choreographer - but that fact doesn't make Dunne chopped liver, and in fact Dunne dances terrifically in this version of the show. (Rightly considered, it is even to Flatley's credit as the creator and "owner" of the show, that "Riverdance" survived his departure.)
Dunne dances brilliantly, and collaborates very well with Jean Butler. Dunne's reserve is a kind of classical manner, and not at all any lack of "gusto." This is particularly obvious in the sequence which begins as a 'duet' between Maria Pagés and a drummer, and which turns into a trio as Dunne appears in a spotlight. Likewise, the call-&-response of the "Trading Taps" sequence is fabulous; if anyone seeing Dunne dance this, finds him an "empty technician," why, perhaps there is something to be said for "empty technique" after all ....
Pagés is always a treat, and was always the "third principal" in this show for us. Composer Bill Whelan pulls off some charming sonic feats, by making a small, and mostly Irish-folk-instrument, pit band provide perfectly convincing accompaniments not only for the Irish dance numbers, but for Pagés' brilliant flamenco, and for the (strangely heterogeneous, though this will escape most Western viewers) pan-former-Soviet-Union stuff danced by former members of the Moiseyev Company, a troupe which is internationally renowned for their brilliant folk dancing, folk dancing produced at a level on par with Russian ballet, which of course is one of the great dance traditions on the planet.
The "choral" sections are our least favorite part of the show.
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Format: DVD
The original "Riverdance - The Show" video is fantastic and is a great example of the correct way to present this incredible union of music and inspired dance. In this second video presentation, only the music is given the treatment it deserves. Sadly, the dancing performances suffer painfully from un-watchable frantic editing and inexcusable camera angles.
This show was filmed at the Radio City Music Hall with many different cameras and the post-production editor seemed determined to use footage from each one as often as possible. During a typical single minute of dance footage, the camera angles may switch up to a dizzying ten times! This horrific visual roller coaster will take you from a tight stage view, back to a mid-audience point of view, further back to a balcony point of view, back up to a tight stage view, swing over to a stage left view, position the main dancer's whole body in view, cut to a view of the orchestra playing, come in close for a very annoying view of the dancers from only the waist up, swing back to a stage right view and zoom in on a few seconds of the dancer's feet. Over and over and over again, often in time with the music, like a crazed artistic MTV music video.
The seemingly never ending angle changes leave the despondent viewer wishing (screaming!) that the camera would just stop moving so the show can be watched. I can only recommend "Riverdance - Live From New York City" to those who only enjoyed the music from the show and have no interest in the dancing. The hyper-active visuals will only leave a bad taste in the mouths (and a loathing of the editor) of those who wanted to watch the phenomenal dance performance. To this latter group, go buy the original "Riverdance - The Show" and you will be much, much happier.
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