The acting of this opera is so good that it's difficult to describe. The combination of acting, costume, and direction as it comes together especially in the performance of Paolo Gavanelli as Rigoletto is the very definition of artistic vitality and "realism." The post modern edge, the grittiness of the performance is aided by the nudity although I'm somewhat troubled by being drawn into an operatic production in part by shapely breasts, and how that affects the general prospects of opera. I'm most familiar with Christine Schafer through Hyperion's Schubert edition and Schumann songs, but she's certainly excellently warm of voice and well suited to this dramatic role. What does disturb and disappoint is the lack of technical facility involved in recording the audio of this performance, which is after all the central point. The sound is weak at a time when the art of recording live performances has generally been mastered. Not using the center channel for a track in a surround version where the front channel needs the help for voice in no way "limits" the disaster. I'd like to kick
someone for doing this to a performance that defines why one should see opera.