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Wagner;Richard Der Fliegende H [Blu-ray] [Import]


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Product Details

  • Format: Classical, NTSC, Import
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, German, Spanish
  • Region: Region B/2
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio: BBC / Opus Arte
  • Release Date: May 31 2011
  • ASIN: B004Q2TWKM

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 9 reviews
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
The Asylum-seeking Dutchman April 29 2011
By Keris Nine - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Blu-ray
If you like your Wagner staged in the traditional manner, then this production won't be for you. If however you think that the themes in Wagner's work - fatalistic romantic destinies, love, duty, power, suffering, the conflict between tradition and modernity - have a timeless quality and can resonate with its subject no matter what the setting, then you might be inclined to at least understand why a producer might want to relate those themes in a way that is relevant to a modern audience. The question with the De Nederlandse Opera production of Der Fliegende Holländer however is whether they take it too far and perhaps take too many liberties with the opera.

Director Martin Kusej takes advantage of the somewhat schizophrenic split in the opera itself between tradition and modernity in order to present it meaningfully to a modern-day Dutch audience. There are no longer sailing ships sailing the seven seas for years at a time - ship navigation, seafaring and commerce are all very different now, so if you think about it in modern terms, it shouldn't really be surprising to see shipping in terms of cruises and ferries, the Dutchman here arriving on a Norwegian ferry, his crew asylum seekers, looking for a homeland, a place to settle after a lifetime of being tossed around as refugees on the seas of conflict and revolution. It shouldn't be difficult either to consider the arrival of these figures being perceived as a threat to those who enjoy a comfortable western bourgeois lifestyle.

Whether those multicultural subjects have any place in a Wagner opera is for the opera-lover to consider (or not, should such interpretations not hold any interest for traditionalists), but it strikes me as a valid response to the themes of Der Fliegende Holländer, and - most importantly - it's presented here in a manner that doesn't undermine or lessen the importance of the other eternal themes in the opera and the subjects that held meaning for Richard Wagner, namely the loss of one's homeland, a consideration of what is a sense of homeland, and all the associated themes that go alongside it where love, family, stability and security count for more than richness and social climbing in a globalised society where money talks. Those subjects are treated with utmost reverence in this production, and the reason why they can be given a modern spin is because the opera is so powerful in its expression of them, tying them deeply into a mythology that does indeed hold mystique and attraction in the legend of the Flying Dutchman, but also in the use of the sea itself - a powerful symbol in any guise, but even more so here in the musical expression and embryonic use of leitmotif that Wagner employs so evocatively.

While I feel that the opera's themes are done justice to in this production then - but I can quite understand why it might not work for everyone - what is just as important, and ultimately persuasive here is the performance of the opera itself. Quite simply, it is sung and played magnificently, and comes across particularly well in the stunning sound reproduction that is presented on the Blu-ray edition. Not only are the voices of Juha Uusitalo and Catherine Naglestad superb in their range, control and power, but they blend together most marvellously as singers and as the couple of the Dutchman and Senta. This is totally a 5-star production in terms of performance and singing alone (as well as for the quality of the Blu-ray) - but it is also a sincere, interesting and fascinating attempt to relate the opera to modern themes. If the concept is perhaps a slightly imperfect fit, or slightly inconsistent with the original intentions of the opera, Der Fliegende Holländer was always an imperfect opera in the first place - but, like this production, no less fascinating for those perceived flaws and inconsistencies.
10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Modern and Faithful June 8 2011
By Dennis A. Brown - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
As a Wagner fanatic, I have always loved The Flying Dutchman. The music-drama's timeless themes of human kinds search for unrequinted love and redemption in an imperfect world ( themes that later reached their fulfillment in Tristan Und Isolde) have always had special meaning for me. These themes, of course, are most perfectly expressed in the works' music. Wagner got the inspiration for the music during a stormy voyage to London in his early 20's. Now listen to the overture and it makes perfect sense.
As for my review of this production, I absolutely love it. I watched it the other night with complete delight. Catherine Naglestad and Juha Uusitalo are wonderful as Senta and the Dutchman. My most pleasant suprise, however, was Robert Lloyd as Daland. Yes Robert Lloyd! It was awesome to see that after all these years he is still going strong. I have the Lohengrin dvd where he performed along with Placido Domingo and that was well over 20 years ago. One of the key moments in the Flying Dutchman is Dalands' aria in act two where he introduces the Dutchman to his daughter Senta. Robert lloyd pulls it off perfectly and I was cheering! The madiens chorus in act two is awesome and you will love the apparel. Check out Mary!
This is a "modern" production and I understand some may not like it. For me, however, what is most important is the sincerity of the production, how the music is performed, and the singers. All these aspects are great. The Blu Ray makes it even better. Enjoy.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A wonderful first Dutchman May 29 2013
By Edmund Zebrowski - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Blu-ray
I'm just getting into opera, Wagner in particular thanks to the Met's new Ring Cycle, so my opinion may not be as sage as others but as a newbie I loved this production. I also happen to find that I like more contemporary stagings so it was perfect. Robert Lloyd was very commanding as the otherworldly seaman and his booming voice filled the role with depth. Catherine Naglestad was the standout for me. Her performance as Senta brought tears to my eyes in the end. It did help that I knew the basic plot for the first two acts and let the finally be a surprise but the updated staging held well my attention and I'll defiantly be watching it again.
10 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Terrible! Sept. 8 2011
By Hannah Banana - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a really aggravating production of Der Fliegende Holländer. I am open to wild or postmodern productions (I liked the Copenhagen Ring), but I hate when the production almost seems to make fun of the work like it is one big joke. The opening scene has everyone on a cruise ship. It is like a spoof of the actual story.

Senta is spinning a spinning wheel while the other women are getting glamorous for their men. Why would Senta have a spinning wheel on a cruise ship or in a spa? Makes no sense. This is the problem with Regietheater. One aspect works while something else is totally out of place in the concept. I don't need a traditional production, but if I am going to buy into the crazy concept, I need to be able to buy into it. Of course, if the director was aiming for a Brechtian distancing effect (Verfremdungseffekt), then maybe he achieved his goal. I don't know.

I think the singers do a creditable job for the most part, but most opera lovers are going to want to turn off the picture and just listen. I was hoping this would be a great addition to my Wagner dvd collection, but I regretted buying it. The singers are decent but not outstanding, so overall, this is an aggravating production that seems to make a joke out of the opera.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
YECH!- save your money folks March 25 2013
By Fair and balanced critic - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Blu-ray
YECHHHHHH!!!!!!!
Prior to purchasing I go to youtube to preview the various offerings for my chosen opera.
Check out the swimming pool sequence of Senta's "spinning wheel" scene. OMG ...such MERDE!
Save your money folks. Eurotrash to the max

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