First the good news: The female cast in this recording/performance is superb, all three leading voices are mindblowing. I was enchanted by Normans beautiful voice, its scope and perfect control (and excellent German pronunciation also), her phrasing is sometimes mindblowing. The same is true for Battle and Troyanos. But who got the idea to cast a singer whose golden times have past about twenty years ago (James King)? The booklet states that "his experience dates back twenty years (...) and remarkably, he was in his early 60s when this film was made, but it shows him in fine voice...". This statement says everything and is warning enough! Kings high notes are often painfull, his voice strained, destroying (at least for me) a little bit the great finale duett. He is no match for Norman here! The "Buhs" for him at the end show that also some of the audience of the evening agree with me.
Conclusion: Due to Kings appearance this sadly is not an ideal cast (therefore only 4 stars), but for the female voices it comes very close. Norman alone is worth listening to. Image quality/sound is good too, Levine does a fine Job.