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  • Wagner: Parsifal
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Wagner: Parsifal


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Product Details

  • Actors: Horst Stein , Bayreuth Festival, Siegfried Jerusalem, Bernd Weikl, Eva Randova
  • Directors: Wolfgang Wagner
  • Format: Multiple Formats, NTSC, DTS Surround Sound, Surround Sound, Subtitled
  • Language: German (DTS 5.1), German (PCM Stereo)
  • Subtitles: German, English, Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: Chinese, English, French, German, Spanish
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Deutsche Grammophon
  • DVD Release Date: September 11, 2007
  • Run Time: 232 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000PC1N4A
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #201,266 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Siegfried Jerusalem, Eva Randova, Hans Sotin, Bernd Weikl, and Matti Salminen star in this Bayreuth production of the Wagner opera conducted by Horst Stein and staged by Wolfgang Wagner.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Siegfried Jerusalem is absolutely excellent as Parsifal here.
Snake Man
Those familiar with Steins Die Meistersinger know to expect great things with this Parsifal, finally transferred to DVD-adding considerable quality to the old VHS.
Sir Butternut Longsword
The sets are very attractive, but the direction misses many opportunities for emotional depth and psychological insight.
L. Lubin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

177 of 188 people found the following review helpful By Snake Man on August 4, 2007
Finally the quest for the holy grail is over: A performance/production of Parsifal on Dvd that is really worth investing in and really helps you appreciate that in fact Parsifal IS a great opera. Whereas the 1951-1964 staging of Wieland Wagner at Bayreuth is regarded by many as the best of the post-war Parsifal productions (at least from Bayreuth), this production on dvd is probably the best you will ever get to see. This is more the case now that Bayreuth itself is being used as a publicity centre for young opera-hating stage designers who wish to forge a career in film via generating the absolute maximum of notoriety they can muster through their perverted productions.

My knowledge of Parsifal is limited to the Nagano Dvd and the Levine/New York Met production (similar to the first reviewer here). I have a few recordings on cd(Von Karajan, Knappertsbusch (1962), Levine) and have witnessed a few live productions including recently the abomination that is the anti-Wagner 2004 Bayreuth production. I can say that, regarding dvds, whereas the Nagano production suffers from: a) conducting that seems to me to lack feeling and, b) from being another silly modern stage, and while the Levine production is: a) sluggish with unimaginative tempi and, b) lacking in dramatic effect, this Bayreuth version is conducted with pace by Stein but is nevertheless replete with ethereal atmospheric effect induced by a really effective layering of the score, the staging is perfect - not cluttered, but scenic and in fact beautiful - and individual performances in terms of singing and acting are really first rate.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Maurice D'Archonnoir on August 30, 2007
But less for the staging.. It's true that the staging here leaves the first place to the music which is great especially for a magnificent work like Parsifal. But as you know these bayreuth videos are captured without the audience and we are expecting quite rightfully more dynamics in the staging. It's very colorful and elegant with gorgeous set designs but very reluctant and lacks some dynamics especially in the second act. The singers are standing stonelike which is certainly deliberate but somehow disturbing.
But Stein, the great wagnerian, with electrfying conducting, makes us forgive and forget these flaws. Norbert Balasch who is the chorus master in all the bayreuth video productions, drives the choir to a divine level as usual. Singers are also first rate save for acting (Randova especially).
Sound quality and video directions are excellent for sure, all in all this is a great parsifal,conducted and sang by great wagnerians and it's from bayreuth, the wagner temple which makes this an indispensable video. But it's not the definitive one. I would love to see that performing crew with otto schenk's magnificent staging for met; That would have been the definitive one for sure.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Sir Butternut Longsword VINE VOICE on September 11, 2007
This Parsifal is conducted by the brilliant but little known Bayreuth\Wagner genius Horst Stein. Those familiar with Steins Die Meistersinger know to expect great things with this Parsifal, finally transferred to DVD-adding considerable quality to the old VHS. Stein, in both this and the Meistersinger(both traditional) is as unique and inspired as the Met\Levine versions are dull and boorish. Both are pseudo-traditional, which is why they make for good comparisons, as well as Jerusalems role as Parsifal and Weikl as Amfortas.
Lets begin with Gurnemanz. Hans Sotin does a marvelous job-On a personal level I adore Kurt Molls booming and uniquely cavernous voice best with Kubelik, second to only Hotter. But Moll sounds strained on the Levine CD and only slightly better on the DVD though Sotin is a far better actor. Most other aspects(with the possible exception of Kundry(Randova\Meier) of the Stein are superior to Levine. Jerusalem is in much better voice and as an actor(good knows we can barely call it that) but here he is much more believable and likeable and his voice still has the ability to oscillate without any stress(the last true heldentenor). Eva Randova is a good Kundry-though I am so tired of this character portrayed as nothing more than a writhing screaming "mime"esque thing we feel no pity or remorse for and can identify with even less. I have, to date, never been satified with any visual representation of her though on disc she has been well served.
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Bob Epstein on September 27, 2007
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While this "Parsifal" is traditional, which is to the good, it is marred by some stiff acting and questionable production touches by Wolfgang Wagner. The singing is very fine but Levine's with the Met (the only other traditional "Parsifal" on DVD) is just as good, and Otto Schenk's production is far better. The Met scores on nearly every point in terms of scenery, staging and acting. There is a magic in New York that is not there in Bayreuth, which has a more plain, homespun quality, attractive in its own way (similar in that regard to Wolfgang Wagner's "Bayreuth "Meistersinger.").

Wolfgang Wagner's sense of stage acting comes basically from the stand and deliver school, with not a great deal of compelling interaction between characters to bring the drama to life. The drama here is not exactly gripping; static is more like it. The Met production is on a different level, and Schenk's handling of characters is far more involving, inviting and compelling. The Met's "Parsifal" has seemingly real people facing important issues.

On its own, the Bayreuth forest that opens acts 1 and 3 is fine, but next to the Met's grand and realistic outdoors, feels a bit cramped and artificial after a while. Bayreuth's second scene of both acts (the hall of the castle of the grail), a la his brother Wieland's 1951-75 production, is abstract yet compelling, too, in its own way. But the Met has a more spiritual setting and a more deeply affecting result.

Act 2 starts out in Bayreuth with Klingsor's castle looking like a cheap science fiction B-movie scene with cheesy-looking smoke, abstract curved pillars on the side and Klingsor dominating from above like a tacky evil superhero. Unconvincing. Laughable even.
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