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Salome (2011)

Karita Mattila , Juha Uusitalo , Jürgen Flimm , Barbara Willis Sweete  |  NR |  DVD
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Karita Mattila, Juha Uusitalo, Kim Begley, Joseph Kaiser, Patrick Summers
  • Directors: Jürgen Flimm, Barbara Willis Sweete
  • Writers: Richard Strauss, Oscar Wilde, Hedwig Lachmann
  • Producers: Peter Gelb, The Metropolitan Opera
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Classical, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: French
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Sony Classics
  • DVD Release Date: January 25, 2011
  • Run Time: 106.00 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #149,454 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Indisputably one of the greatest Salomes of our time, Karita Mattila reprises her stunning interpretation including her unforgettable “Dance of the Seven Veils.” With Strauss’s groundbreaking music magnifying the degenerate atmosphere and building the erotic tension, this is one opera that is as shocking today as it was at its premiere in 1905. Patrick Summers conducts the Metropolitan Opera and Chorus. Originally broadcast October 11, 2008 as part of the Peabody and Emmy Award®-winning Live in HD transmissions to movie theaters.

This is a normal DVD and only the special series was recorded live in HD.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Earlier Would Have Been Better January 31, 2011
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This new release of Salome will do little to appease those of us tho have been waiting for a release of the 2004 staging. Rumor had it that the earlier production had been taped. Perhaps this was never the case, but the internet being what it is many of us had assumed that it was only a matter of time. I did not see it but did hear the production on the radiio; it was quite exciting and Mattila was thrilling. I missed the 2008 HD release ini theatres and didn't listen to the broadcast.

If there is an earlier taping extant with the release of this later revival it is unlikely that the 2004 edition will see the light of day--a pity. I can only echo most of what Ivy Lin has already written. The camera is cruel in the close ups of Mattila. In the house this probably would not be a problem, but in HD it does no favors for the diva. She has retained her figure and is able to wear a dress that would not look out of place in a thirties movie. Vocally four years have robbed the voice of much of the freshness that was evident in 2004 and her low notes are almost growled.

The rest of the cast surely does not represent a major house at its best. The Jochannan, Juha Uusutalo, sounded underpowered and parched whether from the cistern (I assume electronic assistance was used) or on stage. Neither did he command the sort of charisma physically that one associates with this role. Herod has frequently been the home of aging heldentenors but Kim Begley (to the best of my knowledge) has not had a career in Wagner. Even so the sounds that he emits are not steady nor are they mellifluous. More egregious is the singing of Ildiko Komlosi. Painful is the only adjective that comes to mind.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still gripping four years later May 16, 2011
I agree that it's too bad we do not have the 2004 performance, which I didn't see, so I can't compare it to this one. But I was in the audience at this performance, and it was absolutely gripping. You couldn't turn your head away from Karita Matilla, even when others were singing. She was in constant motion, feline, playful, a little out of control. When she stripped, it was more sensual live than what comes across with this camerawork. At the climactic moment, I have to confess I had my opera glasses trained on her, and believe me, her body is still quite beautiful. As for her singing, I felt that the warmth of her more mature voice, together with the slight strain at the top, just added to the intensity of her performance. This strange guy (Jochanan) just drove her out of her mind, making her go far beyond where a spoiled brat princess should go. I felt the Jochanan was good, but I agree, it would have been better if he were more physically attractive, as I've seen in other productions. Kim Begley as Herod sang very clearly (I could understand much of his German), with much less barking than in other productions. Herodias was a bit over the top, but it worked. As for the orchestra, I very much liked the sound on this dvd, although it can never sound as good as it did in the house. As others have pointed out, none of the available dvd versions is perfect, so just enjoy what's good about each of them (if you have the time and the money!).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A SALOME FOR THE AGES. June 8, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I was lucky to have been there in the Spring of 2004 when this production was unveiled with Karita Mattila, and remember being mesmerized by it. Four years later it was revived, and I was lucky for it to have been taped. In both, Mattila is absolutely incandescent, a real force of nature. On film, I own the Stratas who, of course, is perfect for the role, and I do like the secondary characters better. On record, though many sopranos excel in the last scene (just think of Leontyne Price) my favorite complete recording is Caballe's. Interestingly, I found the NYT reviews for both of Mattila's performances, both by the same reviewer, four years apart, utilizing almost the identical terms. For those interested in the life and career of this magnificent soprano, search for her on Wikipedia. Juha Usitalo makes for an estentorious if ungainly Jochanaan, but Kim Bagely and Idiko Komlosi are a bit too tame for Herod and Herodias.Joseph Kaiser shows off a lovely voice as Narraboth, and Patrick Summers shines in the pit.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Strauss' decadent opera Salome has always posed a major problem in casting the lead character of Salome herself. Either you get a soprano that has "the voice" for the role (i.e., can "ride" Strauss' orchestra) but is not physically believable in the role (i.e. a little chunky and too matronly to be a young "sex kitten") OR a soprano is cast that is slim, trim and considered to be believable as desirable BUT with a voice unable to meet the vocal demands of the role (I.e.. battle Strauss' orchestra and able to plummet into the low notes of the role) Karita Mattila possesses BOTH requirements of the role. She has a voice that is well able to ride Strauss' orchestra and ride it she does with gleaming tones able to soar to the stratosphere one moment and plunge to the depths the next--the extreme range of the role seem to hold no terrors for her PLUS she is physically believable-- she plays the very demanding little "sex starved" young girl very well--so flirtatious and playful.

This production is not set in biblical times but, I suppose it is considered a modern production being set in what I think is the 1930s. Whenever, I enjoyed it, to me, it really works very well for this opera. All of the secondary roles are well done. I especially enjoyed "bosomy" and drunk Ildiko Komlosi as Herodias. However, I must say, that Karita's performance simply knocked me out; she is fantastic on this DVD. I am so glad that they taped Karita Mattila as Salome because after seeing this DVD, I feel that she truly is the Salome of our age.

In case you are wondering, Karita manages to do a very discreet but sensual "dance". From what I understand, this filmed version of the "dance" was altered for PBS in order to avoid it being censored because originally, Karita stripped "all the way".
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Solome with Katita Mattila
Performance is very good. Karita Mattila is a fine actress but really doesn't look the part and appears too old for role without the the sensual charrm expected of Solome. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Miles A Lybeck
2.0 out of 5 stars Another Metropolitan opera failure.
Nice try by a good cast but it just does not come together. Buy the Maria Ewing DVD of Salome instead.
Published 17 months ago by T. Weaver
5.0 out of 5 stars Convincing Salome..
OK so she doesn't look 16 (the age of the character) but she sang a fantastic Salome and her acting was 1st rate. Next to Nielson, best Salome recorded.
Published 20 months ago by Gennaro
1.0 out of 5 stars Ridiculous staging!
The staging of this opera is ridiculous. The story is set in a party where the guests wear modern suits and dresses and drink prosecco... Read more
Published on November 6, 2011 by Leonardo Rodrigues
4.0 out of 5 stars Mattila shines in this role!
Karita Mattila is the star in this production! Joseph Kaiser,also, sings and acts well-wish his role was a little larger. Good production.
Published on July 24, 2011 by Douglasmagee
3.0 out of 5 stars Excess censorship
This is an excellent DVD, but I feel a bit cheated.
In the production at the Met. Salome stripped
completely, if only momentarily, naked. Read more
Published on April 20, 2011 by Strauss fan
1.0 out of 5 stars A travesty to Strauss
The director must be joking. How can you take a biblical story and transport in to the 1930's? Herod in a three piece suit is ludicrous. Read more
Published on February 19, 2011 by sergei kochkin
5.0 out of 5 stars Electrifying Performance
This is a dazzling performance. Karita Mattila is awesome! She's performing at 200% through all the opera. She even dances! WOW! All of the secondary roles are good. Read more
Published on February 17, 2011 by Jean-François B.
4.0 out of 5 stars Reposted from Superconductor: "The Finnish Flash"
The Metropolitan Opera has released this fine 2008 performance of Richard Strauss' Salome as part of a Sony series of Met Live in HD broadcasts, now available on DVD and Blu-Ray. Read more
Published on February 12, 2011 by Paul Pelkonen
2.0 out of 5 stars ok but the 2004 performance was better
Mattila is showing her age and anyone who raves about this performance must not have heard many performances or recordings. Read more
Published on January 30, 2011 by Col William Russell
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