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Giuseppe Verdi: Les vêpres siciliennes

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Editorial Reviews

Barbara Haveman, Livia Aghova, Burkhard Fritz, Alejandro Marco-Buhrmester, Balint Szabo, Hubert Francis, Fabrice Farina, Rudi de Vries, Roger Smeets, Jeremy White, and Christophe Fel star in this Netherlandse Opera production of the Verdi opera conducted

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Barbara Haveman, Brukhard Fritz, Balint Szabo, Alejandro Marco-Buhrmeister, Jeremy White
  • Directors: Christof Loy, Misjel Vermeiren
  • Writers: Giuseppe Verdi, Eugène Scribe
  • Format: Multiple Formats, NTSC, Color, Widescreen
  • Language: French (DTS Surround), French (PCM2 .0)
  • Subtitles: English, French, German, Spanish
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Opus Arte
  • DVD Release Date: October 25, 2011
  • Run Time: 209 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: B005FUT99I
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #244,109 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Todd Kay on January 14, 2012
Verified Purchase
Sometimes straight reportage gives such a sense of flavor that one can delay judgment for a time. The overture is pried out of its usual place to become a long entr'acte between Acts I and II. The period is updated, but it is not clear to what. The jacket copy's "1940s world of sudden violence and shadowy double-dealing" cannot be right. The dates of birth provided for the Sicilian revolutionaries are *in* the 1940s (and 1930s), suggesting the action occurs in the 1960s or 1970s, but the costumes and decor don't nail anything down with specificity. It just seems generalized-modern. An exception comes in Act III, when the baritone (while singing) changes from modern formalwear to the outfit of a king from centuries earlier: wig, mantle, breeches. His confrontation with his tenor son, a musical glory of an uneven opera (this rare father/son duet rivals Verdi's great father/daughter ones), is intentionally cosmetically incongruous, as the son is in jeans and an untucked plaid shirt. For her part, the soprano begins in male drag; her clothes get progressively more feminine as the character's priorities shift.

The Sicilian brides of Act II are not "just" abducted and taken advantage of, as in the libretto. After they are subjected to off-stage assault by the French soldiers, they are forced by the French to crawl on hands and knees across broken glass. One major character then commits an even more gruesome unscripted act; I will not spoil this by specifying it. Although some symmetry is provided in the opera's final moments, the act is of questionable dramatic wisdom (well, I couldn't delay judgment forever...), mitigating as it does against the sympathy we should retain for the offending character.
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Giuseppe Verdi: Les vêpres siciliennes
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