Puccini: La Boheme [Blu-ray]
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one of the most famously melodious and popular of all operas is a classic of the Royal Opera repertory. With historically accurate designs by Julia Trevelyan Oman and an excellent cast headed by Hibla Gerzmava and Teodor Ilincai, this 2009 revival, in which conductor Andris Nelsons makes a distinguished Royal Opera House debut, does full justice to Puccini's masterpiece. Filmed in High Definition and recorded in true surround sound.
Top Customer Reviews
Opus Arte Blu-ray Disc
Puccini's La Boheme is one of the most beloved operas of all time, and rightfully so. Therefore, as one would expect, there are already many fine performances of Boheme available on DVD including, for example, the 2003 La Scala performance with Marcelo Alvarez and Cristina Gallardo-Domas, and the older, but still impressive, 1967 La Scala performance with a young Mirella Freni and Gianni Raimondi. In my opinion, however, this new Blu-ray DVD of a 2009 Royal Opera House performance, starring Russian soprano Hibla Gerzmava as Mimi and Rumanian tenor Teodor Ilincai as Rodolfo, deserves to go to the top of the list. Here's my rationale:
First; the mostly youthful cast brings a joie de vivre to their performances that is very appropriate and that compliments both the music and the Bohemian characters they are portraying. And equally important: they all sing beautifully! (It should be noted that veteran bass, Donald Maxwell, brings a comedic style to his Act II portrayal of the aging roué, Alcindoro, that is genuinely funny.)
Second; conductor Andris Nelsons keeps the music moving along at an appropriate pace while also providing the singers with tempos and dynamic shadings that allow them some latitude in the delivery of their big numbers.
Third; the scenery, costuming, staging and lighting are effective and tastefully traditional, and add considerably to the visual experience.
Fourth; the quality of the sound and the picture on this Blu-ray disc is state-of-the-art excellent.
And finally; the extras include separate interviews with conductor Nelsons and stage director John Copely, both of whom have informative and interesting things to say.
All in all, a marvelous package for opera lovers that definitely passes the goose-bump test!
Firstly it is possible to suggest that there are at least 3 good versions available, all of which are likely to give great satisfaction to a great number of people. This is perhaps because this opera is such a fine creation that it enables the participants to rise to their best. So if there is a world class team engaged it is likely that you will get a world class result with little risk of failure.
Rather than give a detailed review of each version therefore I will attempt a general summary of the options based on these 3 productions. They are the two Zeffirelli productions at The Met and at La Scala. There is also the Copley production by way of comparison at the Royal Opera.
There are some key considerations in my opinion. Firstly the group of four men must work well as a team in addition to individual merits. Rodolfo, Mimi, Musetta and Marcello must also communicate strongly to each other in the same way. The end must be genuinely draining.
The Met performance from 2008 delivers on all counts. Gheorghiu and Vargas both deliver a believable relationship with each other. All 4 men relate well to each other.Read more ›
As it happens, the rest of this performance is on the same level! This production dates from 1974, but you would never guess it by looking at it. Full of freshness and vitality--hats off to John Copley. It looks like no expense was spared in the sets and especially in the costumes. And here is another interesting lesson for those who have the eyes to see: This is very much a "traditional" staging: no regietheater, no gimmicks. What it shows us is that quality and substance and even timelessness are to be found in a devoted probity to the music, to the original concept--the triumph of love over egoism and over a creativity/originality that is more or less for its own sake.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Terrific performances but the quality of the filming and engineering of the sound is materially inferior to Met Live disks.Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is one of two 'Music Theatre London' DVDs available, the other one being 'Falstaff' which is equally inventive and based on the same philosophy. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Basilides
I absolutely love this production. It is my favorite of all the Bohemes I have seen. The singing is excellent and the young conductor shows a real understanding of Puccini and his... Read morePublished on May 15, 2014 by Jane T. Bolick
The story is just lovely as Puccini's music, story, etc. All the singers are very good and it is well done. I recomend it very much.Published on February 15, 2014 by chacha
Based on the customer comments, I purchased this performance. Unfortunately, I found it to be disappointing. Read morePublished on September 27, 2011 by Larry A. Verdugo
I amazed that other reviewers gave this 5 stars. When playing this dvd the sound kept on fluctuating so that I had to constantly readjust it. Read morePublished on September 10, 2011 by A Vogel
Nellie Melba,nee Mitchell. She named herself after Melbourne. Australian to the core, but a snob. Called sweet and low by Peter Dawson,a baritone. Read morePublished on July 27, 2011 by Ultrarunner
It is amazing to watch an opera live on blu-ray and also to have all characters not only being talented but also good looking. Read morePublished on April 9, 2011 by Allan Vanegas
I got this for my parents as an accompanying gift to the blu-ray player I was getting them for Christmas. Read morePublished on January 15, 2011 by kafode
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