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Wagner: Parsifal (Giuseppi Sinopoli, Beyreuth Festival Orchestra)

4.8 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

From the 1998 Festival, under the direction of the great Wagner conductor Guiseppe Sinopoli, the four main roles are taken by Poul Elming, Linda Watson, Falk Struckmann and Hans Sotin - one of the strongest line-ups in Bayreuth's recent history.

Review

Giuseppe Sinopoli coaxed an outstanding performance from the Festival Orchestra and Chorus, throwing light on the
elaborate score...and investing the music with a meditatively flowing quality rather than the usual bombast. --Das Opernglas

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Directors: Wolfgang Wagner
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Classical, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: German (DTS 5.1), German (PCM Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: C Major Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: May 31, 2011
  • Run Time: 268 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004RRW4HE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #124,681 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This production is about as traditional as they come: a 1990s Bayreuth production, directed by Wolfgang Wagner, conducted by Giusppe Sinopoli. No acrobats, no flying pretzel monster, no nudity, no decaying rabbit. Boring, I should imagine...

You might think that: I couldn't possibly agree. This production is excellent, and strongly recommended.

The star of this production is not the director - it's the music of Wagner, ably interpreted by Sinopoli. I've watched Parsifal many times, in many forms. It tends to be ritualized, which is no bad thing, but Sinopoli brings a new freshness to the piece, and finds emotion within the ritual. The scene with Amfortas and his deceased father is delicately expressed. (Oddly enough, Schlingensief also focused on this scene, amidst the chaos of his production...)

The quality of the singing is splendid, for the most part.
Poul Elming's Parsifal was beautifully portrayed: incomparable heldentenor voice, plus a careful portrayal of Parsifal as the Tor, the simpleton: not stupid, merely incapable of dealing with the complexities and hypocrisies of life. In some portrayals, he seems to lose his innocence in the final act. Not in this production. He managed to combine authority with simplicity.

It was fun to see Falk Struckman as Amfortas. We saw him in this role at the Met in 2003, chewing the woodwork and appealing to the gallery. The character of Amfortas deserves no less.

Interesting to see Linda Watson as Kundry. She was fine, but the fey quality of the role seemed to have eluded her. Not unlike her current portrayal of Brünnhilde.

Hans Sotin's Gurnemanz was no more than adequate, but the rest of the cast compensated for this.
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This is, in my opinion, the best Parsifal recorded on DVD, and comes close to my favorite audio-only version (Knappertsbusch 1964). This is a modern staging that doesn't changes the original meaning, and focuses on the most important things. Lightning is particularly important in this production, as it enhances the dramatic effect of some of the most important moments. I can't stress enough how much I like this production. The singing is superb, there's a symmetry present in the arrangement of things and placement of people that contrasts with the labyrinth pattern on the floor. As another reviewer mentioned, there are two elements changed from the original: Kundry doesn't die and she actually take the Grail out of the shrine. Considering how many and horrible changes some modern productions do to some operas, this change is rather insignificant and it actually fits the production. The ending transmit such feeling of harmony and perfection that really leaves me speechless every time I watch/hear it.
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Setup satisfactory. Slightly modern, but still with romantic touch. Superb casting. Poul Elming and Linda Watson performs wonderfully. And Amfortas is the first ever to make my eyes wet! Hard to believe, that it is Wolfgang, Richards Grandson, who made the show!
Why not the fifth star? Because there is still more to Parsifal to be reveiled. Flowermaidens can be even more seductive, and Klingsor is a little "stiff." Get him closer to the audience!
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Saw this production two years in a row at Bayreuth. I have almost all the Parsifal CDs and DVDS and this probably is my favorite, except for the Kundry who sings beautifully, but is not a great actress nor seductive. Waltraud Meier is the echt Kundry in every respect. Hans Sotin has a great voice but is not a great vocal actor. Falk Struckman as Amfortas made me bawl at Bayreuth and almost did it again. Poul Elmung as Parsifal is excellent. The sound and picture were much better than I expected for an older DVD. A must for Parsiful lovers.
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Best rendition I've seen, all the characters fit well, the sound is great, and scenery is beautiful, Wagner would be proud,
to hell with modernism!!
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Wagner: Parsifal  (Giuseppi Sinopoli, Beyreuth Festival Orchestra)
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