Rachmaninov - The Miserly Knight / Leiferkus, Berkeley-Steele, Schagidullin, Voynarovskiy, Mikhailov, Jurowski, Glyndebourne Opera
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Top Customer Reviews
As to the musical aspects of this productions, full marks all round. Vladimir Jurowski, an exciting conductor, is in complete control of the complicated musical textures. Rachmaninoff provided a very dense, almost a-melodic orchestral and vocal score that is psychologically astute; Glyndebourne's house orchestra, the London Philharmonic, has the full measure of it, as do the singers. The middle scene, a 24-minute monolog by the Knight in his cellar with his collection of chests of gold pieces, is masterfully done by baritone Sergei Leiferkus. Also outstanding is huge-voiced basso Albert Schagidullin as the Duke. Only slightly less effective is tenor Richard Berkeley-Steel as the Knight's son, Albert.Read more ›
This is a thought-provoking psychological work set to dark and haunting music. It is not the Rachmaninov of the piano concerti; less lyrical and more dramatic, but just as appealing, with great melodic orchestral sweeps. It is written in the style of German opera - no actual arias to remain in the memory, but very musical (read: listenable and enjoyable) recitative employing leitmotivs. The 'musical' progression comes more from the drama, which leads the music.
This is an opera that must be done well to succeed, and on this performance it succeeds in every respect. It is a masterpiece, and makes you wish that Rachmaninov had written more operas.
The original setting is England in Medieval times, but like so many productions, it has been modernized into an abstract setting of indefinite period. This works well, except for the appearance of one character in a modern suit. The musical performance, as others have observed, is wonderful. The opera was written for Chaliapin, and the Russian baritone, Sergei Leiferkus, is marvelous in that role of the 'miserly Knight', especially in a 20 minute monolog in the second scene. This amazing passage justifies buying the DVD just for that passage alone.
Most of the small cast is Russian and there is not one weak link. Jarowski, with one of the world's greatest orchestras, captures the unique Russian feel, and interprets every part of the score perfectly.Read more ›
worth listening many times.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Superb production with great acting.Sound quality excellent.Staging just right for this opera which is not frequently performed.Conducting superb and casting just rightPublished on February 25, 2014 by Dr. J. B. Ross
It's a remarkable DVD -- it arrived having fallen off the post that is intended to secure the disc and consequently considerably scratched by transit, but I tried it rather than... Read morePublished on March 20, 2013 by Robert D. Lamberton
The Miserly Knight was composed by Rachmaninov in 1904 when he was only 30. The original tale was written by Pushkin as one of an intended series of poems depicting the 7 deadly... Read morePublished on July 29, 2012 by I. Giles
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