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Across all four operas the filming is well done and the Blu-ray imaging is wonderful. The sound, as heard on my Boston Acoustics surround system, is very realistic and detailed with the orchestra in front of the singers. There is no spotlighting of the voices and one hears a realistic opera house sound. This is very important since Zubin Mehta draws powerful, passionate, and incredibly accurate playing from the Orquestra de la Comunitat Valencia. This is no small feat since, as a former orchestral musician, I can attest to the extreme difficulty of these scores. The orchestra plays this music as if it is in their blood. All the more amazing if one considers that this is a brand new ensemble made up of players who appear to be mostly very young. Of course, Mehta is an old hand in the pit. His interpretation is sweeping and dramatic.
Gotterdammerung clocks in at about 4 hours and 30 minutes. It always seems just right. The brass playing is spot-on with special mention going to the horn section and individual horn players who perform the various horn calls with a tremendously brassy tone. No mellow horns here! The wind section is amazing...especially the great clarinet duet at the beginning of Act One, Scene Three: beautifully phrased.Read more ›
The performance under discussion sees a continuation of the virtues that I have described in my previous reviews of Rheingold and Walkure. Mehta's conducting is dynamic and his shaping of the musical line is unerring. The singing is generally excellent; Matti Salminen is an appropriately malevolent Hagen and Lance Ryan (a name new to me), while hardly a Melchior or a Windgassen, turns in a solidly sung Siegfried. It is a pleasure to newly encounter a firm voiced heldentenor; this is certainly a rare species in today's vocal firmament. The undoubted star of the show must be Jennifer Wilson's powerful and steely singing in the role of Brunnhilde.
The production in this last opera of the cycle becomes very modern. It is punkish at times and is peppered with humorous and sardonic touches. The filmed projections, somewhat busy but always appropriate, adds tremendously to the visual experience. The amazing final scene is a fitting ending to wondrous production. The busy realisation of the action might not appeal to those that like their Wagner in the style of old. It is worth noting that a friend,who is a great Wagner buff, found the business on the stage during the live performance quite distracting. I think that the filmic production on the DVD version might be an improvement.Read more ›
I did not care very much for the stockbroker suits of the Gibichungs although Hagen's make-up was particularly stunning. More like a Yakuza gangster or an up to no good Oyakata than a Shanghai stockbroker in my view! The special effects were similar in style to the earlier dramas and even if they could not quite match the jaw-dropping impression made by Rheingold they were still pretty good. Again I felt the orchestra and Mehta struggled to deliver that last punch but aided by a splendid recording they were more than adequate. I did not care for the way Siegfied's funeral march was handled - too much of Mehta - but that is just a personal view.
As a set this Ring is remarkable and the bar has been lifted to unforseen heights for any future Blu-ray Rings.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Fourth and final superb release of the mind-blowing production of Wagner's "Ring Cycle." Swimming Rhinemaidens, flying Valkyries and staged by director Carlus Padrissa of... Read morePublished 15 months ago by JHB-4
If you close your eyes, it's not a bad Gotterdammerung. But then, why not buy an audio CD? Why do new productions of the Ring always have to have a novel "interpretation? Read morePublished on January 28, 2013 by Skinnydragon
This staging of Gotterdammerung by Fura Dels Bausto owes much of its success to the consistently high standard of singing and orchestral playing throughout. Read morePublished on July 29, 2012 by I. Giles
What have Michael Schulz, Renee Listerdal and Dirk Becker done? I had high hopes for a modernized staging of the end of the Ring Cycle, since I have only the Met's wonderful... Read morePublished on January 28, 2012 by Eric Jennings
Many have said it better than I can,Jennifer Wilson is FANTASTIC- she should be a lot better know than she is.Her voice is mighty and clean and to my ears a great Brunhilde. Read morePublished on June 29, 2011 by William Schneider
The more I watch this production from Valencia, Spain, the more I like it. The conducting by Zubin Mehta is very slow but also very detailed. Read morePublished on January 1, 2011 by Rod Parke
Well I cant fault the sound, the orchestra, the lead singers, and the conducting. All excellent but I still prefer the Furtwangler to the Solti version....and the Karajan to this. Read morePublished on July 28, 2010 by R. C. Lindner
Similar, but not identical review is published on The Wholenote Magazine website, [...] (by myself) and under Copyright The WholeNote media 2010. Read morePublished on March 25, 2010 by dongiovanni
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