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Verdi - Attila / Ramey, Studer, Zancanaro, Kaludov, Gavazzi, Muti, La Scala Opera (1991)

Samuel Ramey , Cheryl Studer  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Samuel Ramey, Cheryl Studer, Giorgio Zancanaro, Kaludi Kaludov, Riccardo Muti
  • Format: Classical, Color, NTSC
  • Language: Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC / Opus Arte
  • DVD Release Date: January 18, 2005
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00066K2R4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,110 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Samuel Ramey, Giorgio Zancanaro, and Cheryl Studer star in this La Scala production of the Verdi opera conducted by Riccardo Muti.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ramey gives powerhouse performance in rare Verdi! December 13, 1998
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
From the foreboding overture to the Ceasar-esque finale, Verdi's "Attila" is a nonstop musical and dramatic masterpiece. Samuel Ramey gives a stellar perfomance as the Hun leader. Cheryl Studer and Giorgio Zancanaro round out the cast that truly breath firey life into Verdi's music. This La Scala production is conducted by the powerful Riccardo Muti, who gives a militaristic yet passionate treatment of the score. This recording is a must-have for opera fans of any level. "Attila" is three acts of rousing, passionate, and glorious theater, performed in the grand opera tradition for which it was written.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars RAMEY IN HIS SIGNATURE ROLE February 4, 2005
Let's be honest, 'Attila' is not out of Verdi's top drawer. It was one of the products of his 'galley years' before he broke through into a new language and a new form with 'Rigoletto' four years later. But it certainly has its moments, and when a basso the caliber of Samuel Ramey sings the title part, it's worth seeing and hearing. This performance is from the vaults of Italian television (RAI) and newly released, although there apparently has been an earlier release of this or a similar performance on another label. Virtually the same cast is in the CD set recorded at about the same time as this video of the 1991 La Scala production; the only principal that was different was Neil Shicoff as Foresto, sung here by a tenor unknown to me, Kaludi Kaludov. The stars of this production--which has only one named female role--are the two enemies, Attila and Ezio, a Roman general. And both roles here are taken by first-rate singers: Ramey, and Giorgio Zancanaro as Ezio. And each turns in a really fine performance. Ramey, of course, was known for this role, one he performed all over the world. With his trim figure, commanding stage presence (including a hunky bared chest--shades of Yul Brynner!--in Acts I & II) and huge bass voice, he made the role his own. We are fortunate to have this record of it.

The other two roles of importance--Odabella and Foresto--are not quite so fortunate. Cheryl Studer was not in particularly good voice for this performance. Her top was in fine condition, but once she got into her middle voice and particularly into her chest voice, she tended to fade out, and not because the orchestra covered her; the volume simply wasn't there.
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Verdi's opera 'Attila' premiered on St Patrick's day 1846 receives a winning performance by Riccardo Muti's La Scala forces. Every time Muti undertakes the direction of a Verdi opera one can expect the earth to move and here expectations are far from disappointed.The score is very uneven where passages of genius join hands with passages of merely routine competency. It's hard to believe that 'Macbeth' (even in its 1847 version) would follow it. Nonetheless given an excellent cast the opera can excite, and an excellent cast is what this production gets. Samuel Ramey in the title part is a regal Attila more noble than the noblest of Romans. Giorgio Zancanaro as the Moesian traitor, (not Italian traitor as the commentators inaccurately describe him)Ezio leader of the Roman armies provides an external nobility to the character and conveys his cynicism and dillusionment in his Act II aria 'Dagli immortali vertici, a true Verdi baritone aria. Odabella as sung by Cheryl Studer sings with bite paricularly in her 'aria di sortita' but can provide bel canto where needed in the romanza'O nel fuggente nuvolo' and in 'Te sol quest'anima' the trio made famous by the Gigli/Rethberg/Pinza recording of the 78 era. Bulgarian Kaludi sings lyrically as Foresto, dramatically the least interesting character in the opera and Mario Luperi makes a good impact as Leone, the historical Pope Leo I. The opera was based on a tragedy by Hans Zacharias Werner which in its original form was more Wagnerian than Verdian. The librettist Solera transformed into the standard operatic fodder of the era.The opera cannot be said to be historically accurate. The sack of Aquileia which historically followed the scene where Leone drives Attila back from Rome ' Thou art appointed as a scourge against mortals only.Withdraw! Read more ›
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You couldn't have a better cast! June 18, 2001
This opera is one of Verdi's forgotten ones perhaps because you need powerful and commanding voices to sing it. One couldn't hope for a better Attila than Samuel Ramey. He is simply vocally at his best and his acting is terrific. Cheryl Studer is a powerful Odabella and the Italian baritone Giorgio Zancanaro is outstanding. If you love Verdi's Nabucco, you will love Attila. I think that the Italians have it over the Americans; the Chorus is wonderful. The conductor, Riccardo Muti, is perhaps one of the best. This was the first opera I bought on DVD and I have gone back to it over and over. Please buy this one. It's worth the money.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Early Verdi superbly sung! April 7, 2000
Ramey and Studer triumph in a spectacular performance. Ramey's resonant bass rings true and powerful. Ranks up there with his Mefistofele! I cannot imagine this role more superbly sung and acted. Chicago Lyric Opera is in for much excitement next season when he does this role for them with such commanding and thrilling tone. Studer sings in the same league and calibre: rich tone, secure and powerful high notes with dramatic intensity, simply an all out no stops performance. Her soft notes are beautiful and her duets with the tenor Kaludov are equally memorable. He is not quite in her league but he does some fine singing. Wonderful production. Only Zancanaro lets down the side a litle but then it is not much of a role to start with. La Scala can be proud of this performance - which ranks high with their Domingo "Fanciulla" - and we are luckier than the audience present since we can see it at will.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A DEFINITVE PERFORMANCE
Operatic bedbugs aside (those who extract critical blood out of every performance, but only repeat commonplaces), this is a huge-voice opera that most singers, though they may have... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Alfredo R. Villanueva
4.0 out of 5 stars Ramey the Great
Sam's voice was so clear and rounded,placed perfectly.His acting you can't ask for any more.Fabulous!!!!My biggest surprise was Ms.Studer. Read more
Published on May 25, 2011 by eric
5.0 out of 5 stars Attila
Exactly what I was looking for. Easily attainable at the right price. Quick response facilitated timely delivery for 90th birthday party!
Published on April 25, 2010 by Harold M. Breaux Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars I like it!!
I have several Attilas but I like this one best. Studer really put out some venom which I hadn't seen or heard her do before and in very difficult singing. Read more
Published on July 30, 2009 by Operafilly
4.0 out of 5 stars Superb Ramey
I am not an Opera fanatic but do like Samuel Ramey. I will agree with the previous reviewer who said the sets lacked originality. Read more
Published on October 15, 2008 by Beverly M. Thornton
5.0 out of 5 stars The best Attila on video in the marketplace
The standouts in this extraordinary live recording are the fine Odabella of soprano Cheryl Studer, caught in the prime of her youth and the Ezio of Giorgio Zancanaro. Read more
Published on October 5, 2007 by Strauss Lover
3.0 out of 5 stars Quality of service
It was good. I've received the product in according to my expectation time
Published on August 17, 2005 by Salvatore D'alo'
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't believe it's not listed amoung Verdi's classics...
Loved it from the moment Odabella (played masterfully by Cheryl Struder) jumped into Attila's face, and took his sword. Read more
Published on March 20, 2005 by P. J. G.
4.0 out of 5 stars An epic performance
This is an outstanding performance: well-staged, acted, and musically very satisfying. I didn't know what to expect, other than a lesser-known Verdi opera, and found it engaging... Read more
Published on March 10, 2005 by Robert G. Leroe
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have for Verdi fans...Probably coming up again??
Most of the production is said here. I just can say that this is probably the best opera of those "minor operas" verdi wrote. Read more
Published on December 4, 2004 by Gonzalo Tello
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