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Mosè in Egitto (Rossini Opera Festival 2011) [Blu-ray] (2013)

Riccardo Zanellato , Alex Esposito , Graham Vick , Tiziano Mancini  |  NR |  Blu-ray
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Riccardo Zanellato, Alex Esposito, Dmitry Korchak, Sonia Ganassi, Roberto Abbado
  • Directors: Graham Vick, Tiziano Mancini
  • Writers: Gioachino Rossini, Andrea Leone Tottola
  • Producers: Rossini Opera Festival
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Classical, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: Italian (DTS-HD 5.1), Italian (PCM 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Opus Arte
  • DVD Release Date: January 29, 2013
  • Run Time: 170 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B009F7YTC4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #171,379 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews


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3.7 out of 5 stars
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating staging with superb performances. February 20, 2013
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Moses as an Osama bin Laden style Jewish terrorist? Pharoah as a King Hussein of Jordan style leader (with a glamorous wife)? Well, that's part of the conceit of this intriguing staging of Rossini's "Mose in Egitto" by the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro in 2011. And, for the most part, it works. Certainly it makes for a very entertaining performance.

"RegiaTheater" is the term used over the past decade or so, for stage works (plays/operas) wherein the director's radical take largely overwhelms the underlying work being performed. It has, here in America, a very negative connotation, smacking of German/Austrian uber-works and director hubris. Most opera fans here will say that they hate it and just condemn these productions, often sight unseen. ("I'll play the dvd but only to listen to the music.") But, the audience for these directorial efforts is more amenable in Europe.

But what is RegiaTheater really? The idea, as here, of changing the time and place where the work is set is hardly new. Orson Welles did it in the 1930's with Shakespeare, and the idea is so common as to be hardly radical. I can scarcely think of a Shakespeare play that I have seen in the past fifteen years (live or dvd) where this wasn't the case.

The same is true with many opera productions, both now and over the past years. Think of Peter Sellars updating of the Mozart/DaPonte operas into modern New York Mozart - Cosi fan Tutte / Susan Larson, James Maddalena, Sanford Sylvan, Peter Sellars, Craig Smith, Wiener Symphoniker, Peter Sellars;
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fearlessly controversial and quite brilliant January 6, 2013
Director Graham Vick and set designer Stuart Nunn, as well as the administration team of the Pesaro Rossini Opera Festival, go to great pains in interviews on the 'Making Of' extra feature included on this release to emphasise that their 2011 production of Rossini's Mosè in Egitto doesn't take sides and offers no solutions, but rather strives to present a balanced account of the impact of conflict and oppression on a population, specifically in a modern-day Middle East context. Balanced it may be, but that doesn't mean that this production plays it safe in any way. Far from it. Vick depicts Rossini's Biblical epic in terms of suicide bombers, terrorists, torture, self-immolation and - perhaps most controversially - styling Moses as an Osama Bin Laden figure, wielding a Kalashnikov and stirring up a Holy War against their oppressors through inflammatory video recordings.

Without contradicting the intent of a single word of the original libretto here, Graham Vick shows that there is a case for opera not to be entirely subservient to the words alone, but that it should also take into account an interpretation of what the music is expressing. Rossini's score isn't set in any specific period, but is abstractly aligned rather to timeless human feelings and emotions. As a director, Vick clearly wants the production of Rossini's great work to express those sentiments in a meaningful way to a modern-day audience, and the extraordinarily powerful nature of its presentation here clearly justifies that approach.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
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I have over 150 classical DVD/BRs that I watch on a 106" screen and listen through a 7.1 loudspeaker setup where the front speakers are about 9' 6" apart and the surround speakers are on my sides. The room has sound treatments so I hear what's on the disc, not distorting reflections from the walls. My reviews concentrate on the surround audio, as you can pretty much judge the video and stereo for yourself on youtube and similar sites.

Picture is fine, the start menu let's you chose the sound track and the subtitles.

Sound is DTS-HD MA 5.1. It seems a bit under-recorded as I needed a loudness setting of -7 db to get to about 82 db at the loudest parts of the opera. Orchestra sound stage is not much wider than stereo, voices only through the center speaker. The principals carry body mics and most voices are clear, but my ears had trouble with Osiride (Dmitry Korchak) and Aronne (YiJie Shi), the 2 tenors. They might not have nice voices, but the applause they received would indicate otherwise. The microphone on Osiride seemed pointed too down rather then forward. Anyway, they just sounded screechy to me at higher levels but I can't exactly pinpoint what caused it. They seem under-recorded and then turned-up to make up for it. Reducing the overall loudness didn't help much. Balance between orchestra, principals and chorus is o.k., applause is from the front and sides. Overall, you get the feeling of sitting in row 10-12.

So needless to say, it can get only 2 stars from me.

Once you look at the stage set-up, it becomes clear that this is a difficult performance to record.
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