Berlioz: Les Troyens
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Daniela Barcellona, Lance Ryan, Elisabete Matos, Giorgio Giuseppini, Gabriele Viviani, and Stephen Milling star in this Valenciana Palau de les Arts production of the Berlioz opera conduced by Valery Gergiev and directed by Carlus Padrissa.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
This is myth staged for the era of the computer,and what it could do to the planet if we are not too careful.As the notes state"In the 1970's some computer programmers knowing the ruse of the ancient Greeks called a subtle kind of computer virus, a "Trojans Horse".Hense on stage, you see a horse with screens all over it. The production team turned the Trojan war, for war is common to all ages,to screens and all the technology of our age. The civilization is destroyed by viruses and computer worms. A system error causes the computer to crash,bringing to an end the World as we know it. Just as Cassandra's warnings were ignored, so this world deaf and blind to its weaknesses,collapses. Leaving behind a bunch of electronic junk. Queen Dido ideal Nation State recalls a futuristic particle accelerator. As such, it can only represent only a transitional stage in mankind's belief in progress. Three millennia later,Aeneas's decision to set off to Italy, will acquire a Universal dimension,implying the exploration of new Worlds, including new Planets like Mars."In simple terms, the Trojans take the Computers off the Horse and infect themselves. Carthage is an ideal society,using clean renewable energy.The refugees are taken in by Carthage. They infect the city with the virus and then leave for Mars.
This is Sci fi and Calus Padrissa production with his team, is very subtle,sophisticated, clever, imaginative, and witty. If you have no interest in Sc-fi you will not like it.It sticks to the plot and what Berlioz wanted like some modern productions of the Wagner Ring cycle. The opening is doom laiden. Cassendra is musing about the future which you see. The vultures eating the bodies. The priest Lacoon,throwing a spear at the horse. serpents kill him. That you do not see in the other three Versions I have of this opera.She sits in a wheel chair, saddened, aged, and gets out of it to sing and sits back in it. Which makes sense. depressed with what will come. The sporting outfits suit this society. A symbol of where its priorities lie. A city under siege by the Greeks. Carthage is lighter. Set in part of the particle accelerator, as in Geneva, Switzerland.Dido's dress would fit into a traditional production. The hair gives a futuristic touch. Some have commented on this. Well, if you do not like the production,you will point this out as a fault. The costumes are brightly coloured and again traditional. Space suits do come into it as well. I like the part, where a singer is attached to a space craft above the Earth. Aeneas is camped below. When he leaves Carthage he flies to Mars in what looks like the Trojan Horse made into a craft. The virus is in a pod in Carthage, when Dido kills herself on top of it, blood and fire destroy it. It is brilliant and well thought out. If you like Kublicks 2001, Aviatar,The Dune Mini Series, etc you will love this. Opera staging is becoming experimental,breaking away from the idea that staging must remain the same. With the new technology imagine what can be done. naturally, as always happens the old guard will fight back. Opera is changing. I grew tired of the same old 100 year old stage rubbish.I gave up on watching opera, until these new productions came out. This is an opera for the young and the thinkers.
Now to the performance,this Les Troyens,is even better, then the Valencia Ring.The Orchestra of the Comunitat Valenciana is conducted by Valery Gergiev,passionately and with swift tempi, as this should be. Staged by the La Fura dels Baus. As good as ever.Staged in the palace of Arts, Reina Sofia,Valencia. The stage director is the marvellous imaginative,Carlus Parissa, who has done for Les Troyens, what Chereau did for the Ring.Costumes are very avant guarde. Very today,or tomorrow. The singers are extremely good. Elisabete Matos is Cassandre. I never knew she was such a fine singer, going on her performance in the Ring as Gutrune. Lance Ryan is a Siegfried and deals with the part of Enee better then you might think. Dido is Daniela Barcellona, a great mezzo, as good as Troyanos in the Met set. That is praise indeed. If you want more of Barcellona, there is a DVD with her on in the Rossini TDK opera called Tancredi.Traditionalists will love that set. Anna Dido's sister is Zlata Bulicheva. Their duet blew my mind.Stephen Milling is Narbal. What voices. This is how Les Troyens should be sung. Brava. This is a Blu ray I will keep coming back to.
Now to the other Les Troyens and how do they compare. I am fond of the Traditional Mets Levine DVD, with Norman as Cassandra, what a voice. Domingo as Enee, and Troyanos. What passion. This is how Berlioz imagined Dido to sound. He loved her you see. The Camberling version, conducting the orchestra of Paris,is fine. The staging is modern,White Wall,minimalist staging, black costumes in the two parts of this opera. Deborah Polaski takes both parts of Cassendre and Dido. Very fine and strong voice. All the parts are well taken. The tempi are fast. No ballet. A relief to some I imagine. Now to the Gardiner Les trojans in DVD and Bluray. I got this copy when it first came out years ago. The Orchestra of the Revolutionnaire et Romantique playing original instruments is conducted by John Eliot Gardiner. The sound is different. The brass section actually snarls. The staging ,none better, so are most of the singers,including Gregory Kunde and Ludovic Tezier. The problem is the miscasting of Cassandre and Dido. The two light soprano's Antonacci and Graham are good singers,but are not suited to these parts, not because they voices are too light, but they lack passion. Hear Norman, Troyanos, Polaski, and Barcellona and you will see what I mean. For me Graham and Antonacci ruined a good performance. I would award it only three stars. The other two are five stars