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Dvorak;Antonin Rusalka [Import]

3.7 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Dvorak, Fleming, Diadkova, Larin, Conlon
  • Directors: Conlon
  • Format: AC-3, Classical, Color, DTS Surround Sound, DVD-Video, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen, Import
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: German, English, Italian, French, Chinese, Spanish
  • Region: All RegionsAll Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Studio: Arthaus Musik
  • Release Date: May 26 2009
  • Run Time: 155 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B001W1T67Y
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Product Description

Rusalka (2 Dvd)

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I believe the singing and musical performance in this production are wonderful, a pleasure from start to finish. Fleming, Hawlata (as the water goblin) and the wood nymphs are particularly beautiful. I hadn't realized how good Fleming is until seeing this performance. Don't hesitate to buy this recording.
On the other hand... This is a matter of taste I realize, but I really prefer traditional, realistic staging for a work like this. The production is interesting. It seems to be making a point about the surface between the water and earthly worlds. The sets are full of mirrors, reflections, even doppelgangers. They're physically beautiful, and the production is less ridiculous than many conceptualist distortions of 19th-century operas, but still, I would have preferred a traditional design. This is irritating to me, but I can "tune it out" and enjoy the music thoroughly. It does appear to me that, as tastes develop, we are seeing fewer of these essentially egocentric production designs. The cult of the conductor is also in decline I hope. Levine replaces Karajan.
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Format: DVD
I can not express myself in English as well as I would like to
completely disagree with the above reviewers of this outrageous
production od Dvorak's beautiful opera. I respect their right to
have liked it but I must present the opinion of the majority of
traditional opera lovers who think that opera producers and direc
tors do not have the right to change the composers' intentions.
It is a pity that such wonderful singers consented to participate
in this monstruous deformation of an opera dealing with a world
of fantasy. This is a recording to be heard and not seen. To my eye it is hateful, indecent, ugly and boring and what one sees
has nothing to do with what the singers are saying. It is worse
than Salzburg's productions of Les Troyens, La Damnation de Faust
and Turandot. Francesca Zambello's production of Les Troyens for
the Met. Opera and War and Peace for Paris are bothe modern and
not traditional but they still respect the composers' creations.
Think well before spending your money in this DVD. If you want
to hear Renée Flemming in this beautiful opera buy the CD set.
Félix M. Galván-Bird, MD
Puerto Rico.
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Format: DVD
The is the only Rusalka DVD available in original Czech. And it boasts Renee Fleming in the title role.
As usual, she is magnificent. And it is great to see her in addition to hearing her. In general, I find her singing more dramatic and less silkily beautiful than in her celebrated recording under Mackerras(Decca). This is probably what one would expect from a live performance. The other singers are all great, with Sergei Larin as the prince, Franz Hawlata as the watersprite, Larissa Diadkova as Jezibaba and Eva Urbanova as the foreign princess. The orchestra under James Conlon performs ably.
The set and direction are very modern and to these eyes somewhat controversial. But they are interesting, effective and totally valid.
The audience is very well behaved(or some applauses are edited out?), bursting into applause, justifiably, after the famous first act "Mesicku ..." aria, but before the agitated orchestral lead-out, which I felt disrupts the flow slightly.
The film direction is well done in the most part. The camera occasionally lets you see how a scene change is done, which leaves you wondering what the audience in Bastille was actually seeing at other scene changes where the camera "naturally" cuts from one scene to another.
There are very minor cuts to the score. The one I noticed were the solos by the 3 wood nymphs before their trio in the third act.
I don't have a 5.1 system yet, so I cannot comment on the surround sound, but at least the stereo sound is very good.
All in all, the DVD is well worth having.
Technical detail: 2 DVDs(1 DVD9 + 1 DVD5, I thought one DVD9 should have been able to hold 155 mins of video + trailers.)
NTSC, Region 0.
Subtitles in English, French, Itatian, Spanish.
Soundtracks in Czech, Linear Stereo + AC3 Dolby Digital + DTS.
Booklet contains track listings and a synopsis.
Trailers include plugs for other TDK opera DVDs
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Format: DVD
Dvorák's 'Rusalka' is by far his most effective opera and the only one that has made its way in the non-Slavic world. Based on de la Motte Fouqué's fairytale, 'Ondine,' but with additions from Hans Christian Andersen and the Czech ballads of K. J. Erben, and with a symbolist libretto by Jaroslav Kvapil, Dvorák's music captures the story's ecstasy and anguish perfectly. Briefly, it is the story of a water nymph who falls in love with a Prince who visits the lake where she, her three sisters and her father, the Water Spirit, live. She wishes to become mortal so she can be with him and implores the witch, Jezibaba, to grant her that wish. Jezibaba does so but with two provisos: she will become human but lose the power of speech, and if her lover rejects her she will be forever cursed. Well, the Prince initially loves her but, dismayed by her muteness, is soon won over by the blandishments of the evil Foreign Princess, so Rusalka, with her father's help, flees back to the water world. Jezibaba tells her that her only way of extracting revenge is to kill human males by kissing them and when the Prince, who has seen the error of his ways, comes to reclaim her, she warns him (having gotten back her voice) that she cannot come with him because her kiss would be fatal. He says that to 'die upon a kiss' would be the only way he could ever attain peace. They sing a rapturous duet, she kisses him and he dies. Curtain.
Rusalka is a signature role for Renée Fleming; her audio recording of the opera six years ago was a huge hit. This production, from the Paris Opéra, conducted by James Conlon, followed in 2002. The direction of Robert Carsen and set and costume design by Michael Levine emphasize the duality and symmetry of the mortal and fairy worlds.
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