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Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin (2008)

Ryland Davies , Ferruccio Furlanetto , Thomas Lang  |  NR |  DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

List Price: $39.98
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Product Details

  • Actors: Ryland Davies, Ferruccio Furlanetto, Joseph Kaiser, Peter Mattei, Rene Morloc
  • Directors: Thomas Lang
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Classical, Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Russian (DTS 5.0), Russian (PCM Stereo)
  • Subtitles: Chinese, English, French, German, Spanish
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Deutsche Grammophon
  • DVD Release Date: August 12, 2008
  • Run Time: 157 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0018B7RT2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #313,144 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Recorded at the 2007 Salzburg Festival, this production of Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin features an excellent, young cast and the Vienna Philharmonic conducted by maestro Daniel Barenboim. Director Andrea Breth has created an intimate production that mines the depths of expression and charisma of her singer-actors and integrates silent secondary episodes and miniature dramas to heighten the intensity of the story. The title role--a tour de force for any baritone--is taken by Peter Mattei, who starred as Figaro in the Metropolitan Opera's HD Live Broadcast of Il Barbiere di Siviglia. He is joined by dazzling young Russian soprano Anna Samuil, a protégée of Daniel Barenboim who has been acclaimed as a vibrant new presence on the opera stage. The opera includes a wonderful performance from the young tenor, Joseph Kaiser, recently acclaimed for perfomances at The Met opposite Anna Netrebko in Roméo et Juliette, as well as a solid contribution from bass Ferruccio Furlanetto. The DVD has been filmed in HD, with 5.1 DTS surround sound and PCM stereo.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Feeling lonely loving this February 28, 2009
Format:DVD
Most reviewers don't like this performance. But I love it. True, it may look dry, queer, even malicious, but seemed to conceal its own logic and virtues. In my opinion Onegin is the most cynical opera, so I am more generous to this kind of experiment.
Whenever I see Onegin, I feel bored by Larina & Filipyevna. Breth gave sub-characters their own theatrical traits, Olga's amoral indifference, Larina's comic snobbery, Filipyevna's aged curiosity, Gremlin's subdued violence. Breth also gives many metaphors. Onegin just slipped away cold-heartedly after Lensky's death but came back broken down, which tells much story and offers ground for his sudden foolish passion for Tatyana.
Even I don't love every part of the direction. I can't understand the beginnings of each acts-Onegin watching TV and not quite impressed.
Breth also touched some sociology or politics. I thought it went a little too further, but political sense matched quite well for the atmosphere.
Mattei was great. His Mozartian soft voice made the character more complicated. All of other casts were fantastic singers & actors(tresses).
For new Onegin lovers, I frankly recommend Graham Vick's production. It has irresistable grace and wit, but after that, this performance might add another savour for this masterpiece.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Onegin for Ages! March 11, 2013
By AL
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I'm originally from Russia, so you can imagine that I've seen quite a few productions of Eugene Onegin. None of the Onegins, I've ever seen, come even close to the astonishing portrait Peter Mattei gives in this performance, both dramatically and vocally. His Onegin comes across as alive and very sympathetic. I can't disagree more with some reviewers who called him unappealing and cold-hearted. This is the most hot-blooded and passionate Onegin in ages! He undergoes a physical transformation from a playboy, bored, self-absorbed and self-assured, almost obsessed with physical appearance (and looking extremely handsome, indeed!), `disillusioned in everything' at 23 and looking down to everyone, to a completely sincere man, deeply remorseful and suffering, passionately in love, not caring about his looks at all (and still looking sexy as hell!). In the end Onegin's complete defeat, as well as full realization that he himself caused it, is heartbreaking. There are no words to adequately describe beauty and power of Mattei's voice throughout the whole journey. It's lush and luminous, even in all the registers, effortless and infinitely musical. His phrasing is exquisite, his breath control is impeccable.
Anna Samuil as Tatyana and Joseph Kaiser as Lensky give solid performances, but you can't help but notice that they are simply not in the same league as Peter Mattei, not yet at least. I sincerely wish them both successful careers. Ferruccio Furlanetto is a luxury as Gremin.
I can't say that I like the sets very much. There is wheat growing inside(?) Larin's house, then there are puddles on the floor everywhere during the ball at Tatyana's birthday (why?). Women's chorus ("Devizy, krasavizy...") sewing some bandages as in Chinese sweatshop (why?
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25 of 32 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This Onegin: More Miss Than Hit August 19, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Last year it seemed absolutely everyone at Salzburg clamored about director Andrea Breth's monumental updated production of "Eugene Onegin" and indeed, it was one of the most reviewed performances I've ever seen - I read over 30 reviews of the opening night - and nearly every single one seemed to be outdoing the other in heaping superlatives. I saw clips of it and found it moving, and now have watched the entire thing on DVD, twice. Musically, I find it thrilling and eye opening, but dramatically it runs both red hot (like a fire poker in the eye) and unmoving.

There's not a thing wrong with strong willed directors, but when the will of the director ignores what is happening in the music and imposes his or her will OVER what the director intends - then I have a problem. And I had a lot of problems here.

As terrific as Anna Samuil is in the Letter Scene, dramatically there was something lacking - something in need of tightening up - not on the heroine's part, but on the director's. The decision to not have her in pajamas or a nightgown proved, for me at least, a seemingly inconsequential, but ultimately glaring mistake. Breth has already made us aware this Tatyana is no shrinking violet - is, in fact, a strong willed (and slightly spoiled), young woman. But she's still a girl and we need SOME vulnerability and there was next to none found here. Despite Samuil's lovely shaded singing, magnificent lighting (car lights shining through the woods and windows) . . . despite incredible stage machinery rotating the sets showing Tatyana tearing through the house and out into the woods with what can only be described as "love fever," we do not quite get (or at least I did not get) the sense that her epistle to Mr. O was particularly difficult, much less an all night vigil.
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13 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not An Ideal Production September 4, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I bought this review on the basis of my admiration for Peter Mattei whose voice and looks are an asset to any opera. His singing here is indeed beautiful. But the production is so at odds with the spirit of Pushkin and Tchaikovsky that it is hard to stomach.

Onegin is essence of the Russian soul and this production completely negates that. Musically strong, theatrically a disaster.
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