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  • Wagner - Tannhauser / Seiffert, Kringelborn, Trekel, Kaufmann, Kabatu, Haunstein, Zysset, Welser-Most, Zurich Opera
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Wagner - Tannhauser / Seiffert, Kringelborn, Trekel, Kaufmann, Kabatu, Haunstein, Zysset, Welser-Most, Zurich Opera


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Product Details

  • Actors: Jonas Kaufmann, Peter Seiffert, Solveig Kringelborn, Roman Trekel, Martin Zysset
  • Format: Classical, Color, NTSC
  • Language: German (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: EMI Classics
  • DVD Release Date: November 16, 2004
  • Run Time: 187 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00030FJTE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,386 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

The newest release in the EMI Classics Opera on DVD series is a stunning production of Wagner’s masterpiece Tannhauser from the Zurich Opera conducted by Franz Welser-Most, featuring Peter Sieffert (Tannhauser), Solveig Kringelborn (Elisabeth), and Thomas Hampson (von Eschenbach). Initially produced in Dresden in 1845, Tannhauser provoked by a few ardent friends and admirers, among them Schumann and Liszt. The history of the Zurich Opera is rich in cultural highlights: In 1913, Wagner’s "Parsifal" was given its first legal performance outside of Bayreuth; Wilhelm Furtwangler began his career here; Franz Lehar and Richard Strauss came to supervise performances of their own works; and Carlos Kleiber conducted operettas. This performance of Tannhauser on DVD is a welcome addition to this great tradition.

Customer Reviews

Not the Zurich production; the video.
Richard
I couldn't understand or realize what was happened on stage.
Gonzalo Tello
Here, however, the first act has gone badly wrong.
Alex Moffat

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 54 people found the following review helpful By G P Padillo VINE VOICE on December 8, 2004
Format: DVD
This is perhaps one of the most disappointing and frustrating DVDs I've run across. Musically, it offers rewards, but visually it is almost entirely unbearable to watch. The camera work is, quite easily the worst I have ever encountered, beginning with the crowd noises as the orchestra readies. We jump backstage to see Conductor Franz Welser-Möst fidgeting in what appears to be a dressing area (with the clock showing 10 past 8). We watch from overhead - some stunning overhead shots of the pit - as he leads the orchestra in a simultaneously rhapsodic and spiritually delicate reading of the Overture, but within a few minutes the camera concentrates solely on his hands and the maestro is reduced to wrists, fingers and a wedding band. It's at once dizzying and annoying. Then there is a quick jump backstage as we watch Seiffert putting on his final costume touches, then head down stairs . . . I didn't like this one bit. Then we see as Venus doing the same thing. At curtains rise we see what will be the overwhelming image for the rest of the production, Seiffert's face between his eyebrows and chin. Occasionally the camera goes back to the overhead pit shot, or an enormous close-up of a pad on the clarinet. It's terribly amateurish.

When we catch a glimpse of the Venusberg it is primarily a stage filling blowup of what appears to be a Victorian era hospital ward, with all beds empty save one. There are no dancers, no images of sensuality or lust. Frankly, were I Tannhauser, I'd leave out of boredom. Even when Venus Isabelle Kabatu, who after a throaty sounding start pumps out some lovely, impassioned singing all we see - apart from a quick shot or two of her, is the sweating, visage of Seiffert. And so it goes.
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44 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Noam Eitan on April 17, 2001
Format: DVD
When American soprano, Nadine Secunde, appeared as Elisabeth in act II of this Munich production of Tannhäuser, I was transfixed. "She looks like she is straight out of a '30's production," I thought. Could this have been what Kirsten Flagstad's debut in the MET felt like to her unsuspecting audience? How do you describe a star? Whatever it takes to be one, Ms. Secunde has got it. It is not only her voice and magnetic stage presence. She has this rare dramatic quality that hypnotizes you and makes you forget everything else. Despite this, she has performed for years, generally, to mixed reviews.
This is rather shocking. How can the existence of a talent of this order go unannounced by headlines in the media? All anyone has ever been hearing for the past half-century is that, "there are no great Wagnerian voices these days." The truth is that some of today's young singers surpass their distinguished predecessors. The reason that they do not receive the same kind of adulation as these earlier legends is twofold. First, the public is conditioned by reissued recordings and has become less receptive to new talent. This rigidity, shaped and nurtured by technology, is unprecedented in the history of the performing arts. The second reason is that, in the opinion of a number of performers, the music and recording industry is a Mafia. This explains why some singers are regulars on every other new recording (e.g. C.S.), while others languish.
Another pleasant surprise on this DVD is René Kollo. When he recorded this Tannhäuser he had been singing the role for a quarter of a century. I expected him to be beyond his prime. However, my impression was that even though his voice was not as youthful sounding as on the '71 Solti set, he compensated with better discipline.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Poldergeist on February 15, 2003
Format: DVD
As for the visual aspect of this "Tannhäuser", it is dominated by gloom and a lack of colour to the point where it often looks like a black-and-white show.
The creatures living in the Venusberg look fleshy but hardly appetizing. "La chaire est triste" in this lovenest, and one wonders why Tannhauser went there in the first place. Wagner never suggested that his hero came from Mars, so why should he have felt attracted by that naked woman crawling over the scene and showing off her huge green (!)Bavarian buttocks?
Having fled this inferno (where boredom seems to be the greatest torment), our hero is supposed to find the colours and vigour of nature, but the real world is just as dark as the one he has left behind. There is no sign of hope in this opera (even the pilgrims come back dressed in black, just as they were before), so the only way out is death. All the more as Tannhauser's former friends are depicted as a bunch of unpleasant hypocrites, oddly dressed of course (I've got so used to these weird costumes that I hardly notice them anymore. Let's just be thankful they kept the scuba-diving equipment for next time).
The singing and acting is quite convincing on the other hand.
Meyer, Rooterink, and Weikl are excellent. Unlike other reviewers I do think Kollo sounds slightly past his prime. Some passages sound forced, and I prefer Windgassen anyway...
The biggest surprise for me wass Nadine Secunde. The prayer at the beginning of the third act moved me to tears. Here the bleak setting (not to mention the clothes) provided a potent contrast to the pure and deeply sensitive voice that brings light into this darkness.
The orchestra and chorus is very good. I love Mehta's interpretation of the prelude to the Third Act (the horns are magic)
All in all, I recommend this work in spite of its shortcomings. The overall quality is very good.
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