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The Fiery Angel


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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 17 2008)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Philips - Universal Special Imports
  • ASIN: B0000041BE
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #112,706 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Disc: 1
1. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act One: 'Zdes', gospodin rycar' (Ruprecht)
2. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act One: 'Da, on rassejalsja' (Renata, Ruprecht)
3. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act One: 'U vas vse vremja sum kakoj-to' (Renata, Ruprecht)
4. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act One: 'Ne dovol'no l'' (Renata, Ruprecht)
5. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act One: 'Sista... sista... sista...' (Renata, Ruprecht)
6. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Two: '...iz trech magiceskich krugov' (Renata)
7. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Two: 'A, Jakov Glok' (Renata, Ruprecht)
8. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Two: 'Slysis li ty stuk?' (Renata, Ruprecht)
9. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Two: 'Zaklinaju tebja' (Renata, Ruprecht)
10. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Two: 'Tam net nikogo' (Renata, Ruprecht)
See all 12 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Three: 'Genrich, vernis', vernis', vernis'!' (Renata)
2. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Three: 'Ubej ego, Ruprecht!' (Ruprecht, Renata)
3. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Three: 'Renata, perestan' ze plakat'' (Ruprecht, Renata)
4. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Three: - Entr'acte -
5. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Three: 'Milostivaja dama, on opasno ranen' (Renata)
6. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Four: 'Renata, molju tebja...' (Ruprecht, Renata)
7. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Four: 'Baraniny! Vina i baraniny!' (Renata)
8. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Four: 'Ach, negodjaj!' (Ruprecht)
9. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Five: 'Sestra Renata' (Renata)
10. Opera In Five Acts And Seven Scenes, Op. 37: Act Five: 'Vozljublennye brat'ja i sestry'
See all 13 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Amazon.ca

L'Ange de feu est sans nul doute le chef-d'oeuvre lyrique de Serge Prokofiev. Avec Valery Gergiev à la tête du choeur et de l'orchestre du Kirov de Saint-Pétersbourg, la partition retrouve ses sources. La version que nous propose le jeune chef russe est évidemment chantée dans la langue de Pouchkine. La principale qualité de cet enregistrement est résolument l'expression de puissance qu'il s'en dégage. Les musiciens du Kirov n'ont pas de concurrence dans l'expression de l'oppression. Un Ange de feu haut en couleurs. --Pierre Graveleau

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9c1db87c) out of 5 stars 10 reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c22d348) out of 5 stars A superb performance of a strange, compelling opera March 4 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is an absolutely superb performance of an strange but compelling opera. All the principles--Gergiev, Gorchakova, Leiferkus--acquit themselves brilliantly and the Kirov forces couldn't be bettered. Most important, this is one of the most powerful and original scores Prokofiev ever composed, and that's saying a lot.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c22d798) out of 5 stars An Outstanding Performance May 28 2003
By David A. Wend - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The Fiery Angel is a presents some difficulties in the performance and tends to turn-off people with its bizarre plot. The story concerns Renata, who was visited by an angel named Madiel from the age of 8, and who taught her how to lead a life of purity. He appeared to her wearing a white gown and bathed in light. However, Renata fell in love with the angel and desired a more carnal relationship. At this suggestion, Madiel was enraged and becomes enraged. Before disappearing in a ball of flame, Madiel promises to return in human form. Thereafter, Renata searched for the angel and believed she found him in Count Heinrich. With him, she has a
passionate relationship but he disappeared leaving her searching for him and having terrifying visions. Ruprecht falls in love with Renata and becomes her protector.
The story is one of occult interest with the heroine (or perhaps
anti-heroine) Renata being possessed by the angel Madiel and, in turn, attempts to posses the knight Ruprecht. While one is sympathetic toward Renata because of the constant visions that torture her we can sense her manipulative power as she provokes Ruprecht in an attempt to kill Count Heinrich, whom she suspects is Madiel returned to earth in a different form.
Prokofiev based The Fiery Angel on a novel by Valery Bryusov, published in 1907, that he discovered in America in 1919. He began the opera in 1920 but the work did not go smoothly and it was not completed until 1927, and revised it later in attempts to have it performed (it was not performed until 1955). Eventually, the music found its way into the Third Symphony
in 1928. The action of the opera is episodic than flowing. The scene with Faust and Mephistopheles is gratutitous and does not advance the story but does have occult interest. Also, in the last act of the opera, Ruprecht only observes as Renata is condemned to death, taking no part in defending the woman he loves. The opera has been described as being more a symphony in the guise of an opera. For me, despite the shortcomings of this opera, it is a remarkable work that has some powerful moments.
The occult subject matter and the difficulty of the role of Renata consigned the opera to oblivion until recently. This recording of The Fiery Angel is from a landmark production by the Mariinsky Theater in 1993 and won the Gramophone award for best opera. This is a live recording but the audience is quiet, and stage noise is minimal. Galina Gorchakova is perfect as Renata and conveys her vulnerability and torment. Sergei Leiferkus is excellent as Ruprecht, and the remaining cast members give wonderful performances with Vladimir Ognovenko being particularly sinister as the Inquisitor. Most of all, Valery Gergiev deserves praise for his peerless conducting of this opera and proving that The Fiery Angel is among Prokofiev's masterpieces.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c22d7c8) out of 5 stars Phenomenal performance of a difficult opera Oct. 26 2001
By M. Tietjen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Anyone who doubts the vocal or dramatic talents of Russian soprano Galina Gorchakova need only listen to her performance here as Renata to understand her success. It is perhaps the most difficult opera role ever--the sheer volume of music for her is astounding. But Gorchakova is, vocally and dramatically, perfect for the role, and her (live) performance recorded here can only be described as spectacular. Her histrionic mad scene in the beginning (actually the whole opera can be considered one big mad scene) is truly chilling. Her compatriots are also phenomenal, and Gergiev's conducting is brilliant. The Kirov transforms this difficult opera into something truly fascinating and, sometimes, genuinely terrifying. My only regret is that the video of this performance seems to have gone out of print. I wish they would re-release it, or, better still, release it on DVD.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c22dac8) out of 5 stars A no holds barred performance July 29 2000
By John - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
If you're a Prokofiev fan or a fan of 20th century music you owe it to yourself to experience this opera. It's not for the faint-hearted, with its story of demons and and Satanic posession- and music to match; And this performance does not hold back, it unleashes the full power of one of Prokofiev's most exciting and terrifying scores. I highly recommend it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c22dc00) out of 5 stars Strong performance of one of the most powerful operas in the repertoire Feb. 28 2009
By G.D. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is, in most respects, another complete success from Gergiev in Russian opera, this time with one of the most spectacularly and, well, fiery works in the repertoire. While it is probably true that Prokofiev sometimes let artistic judgment fly in favor of sheer spectacle, the end result is undeniably striking and powerful, going from smoldering intensity to being completely engulfed in flames; there is an atmosphere of hysteria and intensity in this one to which I've never heard anything equal. But this tour-de-force also needs a conductor who can keep the reins and never lose sight of the overarching structure, and while Gergiev certainly conducts with ferocity, power and drive, I cannot help but feeling that he sometimes looses sight of the lines. Still, it is overall a very satisfying performance from conductor and orchestra.

And fortunately the singers are more than adequate as well. Leiferkus is overall pretty good, but sounds a bit impersonal at times. Gorchakova, on the other hand, sings with the perfect mix of beauty and intensity, even hysteria, that the role (Renata) really needs; indeed, I cannot imagine this role being better done. The other roles are consistently fine as well.

Now, this is a live recording and there is inevitably going to be some extraneous noise, but fortunately there is little from the audience and the stage-noise isn't really intrusive. More worrisome, overall, is the fact that the sound is a little constricted, inevitably preventing some of the fiery orchestral brilliance to bloom or leave the impact that it could have. This is, to be sure, a minor point as well, but together with some other nitpicks the final verdict must be that even this driven, powerful performance still could potentially be bettered. Indeed, for the orchestral part I actually prefer Järvi (just as I prefer Järvi to Gergiev in the symphonies). But then, there's Gorchakove ... Järvi's soloists aren't really any match for Gergiev's. No, listening again to the power and intensity realized here, there's no way I can give this one less than top marks. Urgently recommended.


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