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Berlioz - Les Troyens (remastered)


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Editorial Reviews

Jessye Norman, Placido Domingo, and Tatiana Troyanos star in this Metropolitan Opera performance of the Berlioz opera conducted by James Levine.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Jessye Norman, Tatiana Troyanos, Placido Domingo, Allan Monk, Paul Plishka
  • Directors: Fabrizio Melano
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Classical, NTSC, DTS Surround Sound, Dolby, Subtitled
  • Language: French (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (DTS 5.1), French (PCM Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Deutsche Grammophon
  • DVD Release Date: August 14, 2007
  • Run Time: 253 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000OONQ1M
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,943 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

87 of 87 people found the following review helpful By Todd Kay on September 10, 2007
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It is gratifying to see this, one of the most enticing Met DVDs to have been issued on the now-defunct Pioneer label, emerge from out-of-print limbo. DG's reissue has spread it over two discs and remastered it, and it looks and sounds splendid for the effort. Claims for greatly improved sound and picture often are dubious, but having seen and heard this, I am tempted to re-buy the label's similar spiffing-up of the rather good Pioneer DON CARLO (an artifact of the same era) after all.

TROYENS, Berlioz's ambitious and comprehensive setting of Virgil's AENEID, is a challenging opera for theaters and audiences alike. It had made its belated Met debut in 1974 under the baton of its great champion Maestro Rafael Kubelik, and was chosen to inaugurate the theater's centennial season in the fall of 1983. For more than one reason, we are fortunate that a television broadcast from the run preserved the undertaking for posterity. For starters, there will never be a great abundance of recordings of TROYENS (although there are at present two other DVD versions), and the lead roles on this one reflect luxury casting at the most extravagant level. Jessye Norman, Tatiana Troyanos, and Plácido Domingo provide (literally) hours of ravishingly beautiful singing, and they are not simply empty-headed generators of pretty tone. They are all diligent and sophisticated musicians, and their work here has that rare frisson one encounters when singers of the first rank, at the peak of their capabilities, are seen and heard measuring themselves against roles in which they have not settled into a comfortable routine. There is the electricity of the special occasion, so rare in operatic videos.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful By jswell on February 2, 2009
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I have the 2 video tape version of this stunning opera, and actually was in the audience the night it was taped. I flew in from Chicago just to see it. If for no other reason than to hear and see Troyanos in her immolation scene alone is reason to purchase. The house went WILD. She was so emotionally drained that she had to hold the curtain for her encore(s). This is one of the highlights of the entire Domingo career; as I said, I have the 2 videotape version, but rarely play it, for fear it may break or self-destruct. That it has FINALLY made it to DVD is cause for major rejoicing. The French isn't bad, especially Norman and Troyanos-- and this was before seat-translations or supertitles existed! I just hope the sound on the DVD has been transferred and cleaned up, not that it needed anything on the videotape, by the way. This is, in many ways, as challenging an opera as War and Peace, and about the same length. Thank God this performance was preserved, and that I have this to remember how great a singing actress Troyanos was. She is sorely missed by this writer.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Scott Chamberlain VINE VOICE on May 6, 2008
I fell in love with the story of the Trojan War, even before I sold my soul to classical music. So naturally I was drawn to this production of "Les Troyens." And there are some astonishing moments here! Norman is wildly gripping in the part of Cassandra, totally dominating the stage and the first part of the opera. Domingo makes for a strong, masculine Aeneas, and although he had some doubts about singing the part, does a fine job with it. Troyanos is good, but not as blisteringly magnificent as Norman.

I do have some problems with the staging, however. Right from the beginning, which should burst at the seems with wild excitement, we get the Trojans walking out, lining up, and declaiming that they are generally pleased the war is over. Um, couldn't they scurry, dance, hug...? The costumes seem to be of the historical epic type, but the er, "sets" are modernist symbolic. Is that the Trojan Horse they drag within the walls...? But don't get me wrong -- a solid production with some incredible singing, acting, and orchestral playing in a rich, fascinating opera that is too vast to be produced regularly. Very rewarding.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Joe Murray on March 3, 2013
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Anyone who is a Jessye fan must own this DVD. Jessye's Cassandra is out of this world. BUT, the diva I am referring to is Tatiyana Troyanos, whose Dido is one of the most sublime creations in mezzo history. Today we all rave about Lorraine Hunt Lieberson's version at the MET in the early 2000s. But that pales in comparison to Ms. Troyanos. (Even her name is Trojan!!!)

I bought the disk for Jessye, but I cannot stop thinking about Tatiyana.

(BTW - there is a CD of a radio broadcast whereJessye sings BOTH Cassandre and Dido -- it is definitely worth procuring.)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robert Hills on January 6, 2013
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I saw this at the Met at its first production premier in the 1973/1974 season. I have seen many other productions from the 1972 Boston Opera (Regina Crespin) to the exceptional current Met production with Graham. While the singing in the 2012/13 Met productions soars to an unequaled high, both the newest production and the excellent Gardiner procuctions have set designs that are, well, way too cold for mid-nineteenth century French opera. In contrast in the 1973/74 production the Met went all out with buildings, gilt, video effects of decidedly questionable aesthetics (some reviews at the time were downright mocking) and acrobatics/ballet from end to end. If you are a traditionalist or just want to see what could be done when money was no object then this was the one to see. The revival in 2003 shown here jettisoned the glitz in favor of a more spare set but retained in spirit many of the wonderful excesses of costume. The large scale ballets and acrobatic interludes were also retained if only to highlight the Berlioz score and depth of the Met's chorus/ballet corps.
And by all means this is not to lose sight of the singing by Troyanos, Norman and Domingo which is spectacular.
If one might quibble it would be with the filming which was clearly an afterthought.
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Berlioz - Les Troyens (remastered)
This item: Berlioz - Les Troyens (remastered)
Price: $39.98
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