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Renee Fleming Live in Concert (2012)

Renee Fleming , Vienna Philharmonic , Christian Thielemann  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

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Frequently Bought Together

Renee Fleming Live in Concert + Waldbuhne 2010: An Evening With Renee Fleming + Renee Fleming & Dmitri Hvorostovsky: A Musical Odyssey in St. Petersburg
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Product Details

  • Actors: Renee Fleming, Vienna Philharmonic
  • Directors: Christian Thielemann
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Classical, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: German (DTS 5.1), German (Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English, French, German, Spanish
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Opus Arte
  • DVD Release Date: June 12, 2012
  • Run Time: 84 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007PQ50CA
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #184,802 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Gloriously affirming the Salzburg Festival's long-standing reputation as a supreme musical event, this concert honours one of
its founding fathers, Richard Strauss. Renee Fleming, Christian Thielemann and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra unite for a
programme of song, opera and tone poem, genres central to the composer's extraordinarily fruitful career. Fleming interprets
four of his songs with orchestra, including the deeply moving Befreit, and provides a substantial taste of perhaps her finest
operatic role, Arabella. New vistas then open as Thielemann and the Vienna Philharmonic take the spectacular mountain
journey mapped by the composer in his titanic Alpine Symphony.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Alpine Symphony is the major work July 1, 2012
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
Whoever titled this as "Renee Fleming in Concert" should be arrested for major misrepresentation. She takes up only 26 minutes in a 85 minute concert. The major work here is the Richard Strauss "Eine Alpensinfonie", one of his better and longer tone poems, describing a trip up and down a mountain in the Alps, including getting caught in a thunderstorm. It is set in 22 sections, and is really an ode to nature. Its composition is said to have been spurred on by the death of Gustav Mahler, who wrote some very memorable and beautiful "nature" related music in some of his symphonies. The Alpine Symphony title appears on this blu ray cover in small print, so Unitel will only have themselves to blame if people pass this by on the Amazon site, thinking that it's wall to wall Renee Fleming (not that she's not a great soprano, just that her presence is limited on this disc). Even the songs she sings are not vintage Strauss - the "Four Last Songs" would have been a sounder choice, and Fleming has them in her repertoire.

Anyway - enough whining. The Alpine Symphony is expertly played, as you might expect, by the always wonderful Vienna Philharmonic under Christian Thielemann, a great combo. The orchestra is augmented for this outing to Salzburg with Wagner horns, wind machine and a large piece of sheet metal for the thunder (plus more of the regular instruments). What a mighty sound they make, and what a great recording in DTS MASTER AUDIO. This is not deep music, but it will show off your equipment, and it is entertaining.

For some reason, Amazon has this for under $18 for the blu ray on their site. I've no idea why so cheap, but take advantage now, before they change their mind.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Blu-ray
Renee Fleming opens this concert and is very much on top form here singing these songs exquisitely with heart-felt expression and meaning. She is also possessed of one of the best-suited Strauss soprano voices on the world stage at present and it really shows in this concert.

The opening three songs were all conceived initially without orchestra and were orchestrated later. In the case of Befreit, Strauss himself provided the orchestration 35 years later and Winterliebe was orchestrated 18 years later. The orchestration of Traum durch die Dammerung was done by Robert Heger. Renee Fleming's opening performance of 'Befreit' is especially moving but the other two songs are also finely done. The concluding song of the four chosen is the rarely performed and powerfully conceived Gesang der Apollopriesterin op.33 /2. This is conceived on a very large and passionate scale and is operatic in impact. This song was originally conceived in full orchestral splendour and this performance is a powerful delivery by all concerned.

There follows the concluding scene from the first act of Arabella which is in the form of a monologue during which the heroine contemplates her marital options. There are two unappealing options and one attractive but little understood option. Arabella's preference for this more risky option is clearly portrayed and once more it receives a passionately excellent performance.

Thielemann has a considerable reputation for his Strauss interpretations and in this concert he is wonderfully supported by the Vienna Philharmonic which provides playing of tonal splendour coupled with technical brilliance. This concluding performance of Strauss's epic Alpine Symphony is very similar to the one he did for CD with the same orchestra issued in 2001.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Strauss In Excelsis August 26, 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Optimum beauty of voice and optimum musical intelligence are rarely combined in the classical vocalist. I have been collecting for many years and the list is small. Victoria de los Angeles comes to mind. Elizabeth Grummer I only know through the records she made and they are all estimable. Regine Crespin during the short period before her top compromised her talent would qualify, I think. And very controversially I would add Elizabeth Schwarzkopf to that list, a soprano I hear many times both iin recital and opera. I suspect we can all make our own list.

These thoughts were the result of combing through YouTube one evening when I came across a Salzburg concert in the large festival hall given by Renee Fleming and Christian Thielemann. The program consisted of some songs by Strauss, an excerpt from Arabella and the Alpine Symphony. I was thrilled to find that it was available on a CVD. Ome might add uncharitably, not the most balanced of programs even one devoted to Richard Strauss. With Fleming's photograph on the cover one could logically assume that her portion of the program would be longer than it was. Given the level of Fleming's artistry that evening we should have demanded more. I have kept my distance from this artist on many occasions. Her addiction to jazz and pop would be acceptable if it remined a personal quirk and one rare brought out--and never in public. She has been guilty of self indulgent performances that were not worthy of her talent. But this is neither the time nor the place to cite chaper and verse.

That evening in Salzburg was pure vocal magic. It is ungallant to say it but the lady had reached the half century mark. She doesn't look it and more important she doesn't sound sound as if she had over twenty years of singing under her belt.
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