Muti, Mahler and Ma: At holiday time, the joy of sets is unbounded
This year's boxed bounty in classical music comes in three categories -- not so pricey, pricey and way pricey. But the following CD and DVD sets are worth splurging on, and the music lovers on your gift list will appreciate your generosity.
Soloists, Teatro alla Scala; Riccardo Muti, conductor: Donizetti, "Don Pasquale"; Poulenc: "Dialogues des Carmelites"; Puccini: "Manon Lescaut" (TDK, $85.97): These strongly cast, solidly directed and faithfully conducted "live" DVD performances date from the mid-1990s to 2004 and stand as worthy documents of some of Muti's most notable achievements at La Scala before relations between the historic theater and its now-former music director turned sour. Each video opera is also available singly. -- Chicago Tribune, John von Rhein, December 13, 2009
this production of Gaetano Donizetti's zesty comic opera from Milan's Teatro alla Scala, conducted by its formidable former music director Riccardo Muti, is as good as it gets -- Toronto Star, Thursday, July 12th, 2007