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Falstaff [DVD]

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JAMES LEVINE AVEC L'ORCHESTRE ET CHOEUR DU METROPOLITAN OPERA VERDI : FALSTAFF Deutsche Grammophon sort pour la toute première fois en DVD ce Falstaff de 1992, hautement acclamé et considéré à juste titre comme un jalon de la production du Metropolitan Opera. Sous la baguette du Maestro James Levine et dans une reprise de la mise en scène de Franco Zeffirelli, brille une distribution exemplaire, menée par Mirella Freni et Paul Plishka, sans doute la meilleure qu'on ait pu rassembler à l'époque. Une partition magique de Verdi, des acteurs vifs et convaincants, une direction harmonieuse entre délicatesse et panache. autant d'ingrédients qui font de cette production une réussite parfaite.

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Opiniones de clientes más útiles en (beta) (Puede incluir opiniones del Programa de Recompensas de Opiniones Iniciales) 4.6 de un máximo de 5 estrellas 17 opiniones
1 de 1 personas piensan que la opinión es útil
5.0 de un máximo de 5 estrellas He who laughs last laughs best! 13 de septiembre de 2015
Por Brett K. - Publicado en
Formato: DVD Compra verificada
This is a fantastic production of Verdi's chefs-d'oeuvre, Falstaff. Timing is of the upmost importance in this opera, and Maestro Levine shows the leadership that he is known for to make all of the elements come together as a comic whole. The orchestra is great and the acting as a whole is very good. Paul Plishka perfectly captures Sir John Falstaff in all of his complexity; his narcissism and gluttony as well as his wittiness and humor. Despite all of his flaws, I view Falstaff as an almost overwhelmingly charming as wells as a tragic figure, both in Shakespeare and in Verdi. Plishka plays the part beautifully--and with such a voice! Mirella Freni, Bruno Pola, and Barbara Bonney do very well in their supporting roles. The staging can be considered traditional, definitely a plus in an age where it seems that most opera directors have lost their minds (or perhaps just have a deep hatred for the opera going public). As with most Met videos, the camera work is fine and the video and sound quality are very good for an early 1990's recording.

Verdi had a great love of Shakespeare and it is said that Falstaff was the work that he was most proud of. When he finished composing the opera, the octogenarian Verdi felt a great sadness that his work with Sir John was through. Thanks to all involved in this production, Verdi's beloved Falstaff will live on in a way Verdi would approve for generations to come in this top-notch production.
20 de 20 personas piensan que la opinión es útil
5.0 de un máximo de 5 estrellas A Falstaff of great beauty and tender wit 12 de julio de 2009
Por Michael Birman - Publicado en
Formato: DVD Compra verificada
It is to composer and librettist Arrigo Boito and his constant pestering of the octogenarian Verdi that there remained within him one last great comedy fighting to get out that we owe this absolute miracle of an opera. Produced in 1893 as Verdi turned 80 there is much in this masterpiece that can be identified as a modernist neoclassical work. The use of short motifs instead of long arioso melodic lines, the spry and reduced orchestral textures and the lack of a single 'stand and deliver' dramatic declamatory aria all serve to make this more of a 20th century work than an example of 19th century late-Romanticism. Despite his many years of writing for the stage Verdi refuses to give in to either age or time. There is an eternally youthful freshness to this score that is often breathtaking, culminating in the celestial final scene in Windsor Park. Like the enchanted Forest of Arden in As You Like It, we are in a world of nocturnal magic and human redemption that an Ovidian Verdi transforms into a wondrous fugue proclaiming that all the world's a joke. Any successful production of Falstaff must celebrate this magic.

This new DVD release of a performance filmed in October 1992 features Franco Zeffirelli's venerable 1964 production, his first appearance at the Met. Although it occasionally shows its age it is strong enough to overcome some minor shortcomings. Visually stunning in depicting Tudor era Windsor, there is something deeply satisfying in the way the singers interact with their surroundings. Each performance has a calm organic rightness at its core that transcends the frenetic pace of the opera, giving this Falstaff a sense of balance that always remains sure-handed. Paul Plishka is a wonderfully affecting Falstaff, comic yet vulnerable. Mirella Freni is superb as Alice Ford. Barbara Bonney as Nannetta and Marilyn Horne as Mrs. Quickly are excellent. The cast submerge themselves in their roles.

James Levine's conducting of this difficult score approaches perfection. In many ways his vision of the opera is reminiscent of von Karajan's brilliant EMI recording from the 1950s. The Met orchestra are at their early 1990's performance peak. DGG have cleaned up the nearly two decade old video, which is slightly fuzzy but clear. DTS and PCM sound are both excellent with DTS providing a nice sense of space and presence to the proceedings.

There are several fine DVDs of Falstaff now available. My favorite remains the magical and revelatory Solti conducted Falstaff featuring the Vienna Philharmonic from a few years back, also on DGG (DVD 073 4080). But this production gives that one a run for its money. In an ideal world one would own both. This opera exhausts superlatives and fairly cries for a multitude of different interpreters.

Mike Birman
7 de 7 personas piensan que la opinión es útil
5.0 de un máximo de 5 estrellas an exciting performance 25 de marzo de 2010
Por David Smith - Publicado en
Formato: DVD Compra verificada
This is a delightful performance of Verdi's only comic opera. The direction is by Franco Zeffirelli as was the set design. Given that the Met appears to be retiring the classic Zeffirelli sets, in the near future DVD may be the only place to see these wonderful creations. I do not have the expertise to comment on the quality of the singing -- however all appeared to do a great job. What stood out for me was the fantastic acting by Paul Plishka (Falstaff). His facial expressions were amazing and captivating (and something that most people in the MET audience could not see). The DVD quality is wonderful -- the picture has clarity and excellent color saturation. The camera work is very good -- there is none of the jerky cuts that clutter some other opera DVDs. The sound is fine -- I always prefer DTS when it is available compared to PCM or Dolbey 5.1. The DTS provides a reasonable but not fantastic sound stage. On my first sitting I watched the last act at least four times. This is a DVD I will be going back to watch.
10 de 11 personas piensan que la opinión es útil
4.0 de un máximo de 5 estrellas Captivating, but not a perfect Falstaff. 5 stars to Barbara Bonney. 27 de octubre de 2009
Por J. Espinosa Ihnen - Publicado en
Formato: DVD Compra verificada
I've just watched this Falstaff for the first time. Big names cast, Met forces under Levine, classic Zeffirelli settings... I had great expectations.

Plishka's Falstaff is outstanding, both from the acting and singing point of view. It has everything required: the right age, attitude, voice and comedy doses. Freni's Alice and Horne's Quickly are also quite enjoyable, but they both lack something I would describe as "agility": there's some stiffness in their acting and singing, which is not present in Plishka nor Susan Graham's Meg Page, a small role perfectly rendered. My Top-One lady in this production is Barbara Bonney, just wonderful as Nannetta. Her "Sul fil d'un soffio etesio" is absolutely magic, though the white horse she rides while singing the aria's first part seems to disagree (oh, these regisseurs!...). Frank Lopardo is very good as Fenton, though his voice is a little too spinto for the role, anyway the result is quite pleasing. Bruno Pola seems not at ease with Ford, his emission looses perfection here and there, but all in all, he delivers a solid performance. From the Bardolf-Pistol-Caius trio I pick veteran Piero di Palma (Dr. Caius), for his musical, smooth tone and perfect diction, which old timers like me recognize in so many opera recordings from the 50's and on. The guy set a standard. Levine conducts with his renowned masterful Verdi expertise.

The sound is very good, and balance between stage and pit is well done, not an easy task in this highly complex score. I believe 4:3 image quality isn't up to 1993 standard, and this is a disappointing first impression, but you should soon forget it and get captivated by the performance. There's no interesting bonus material, and we have subtitles in Italian, English, German, French, Spanish (very good), and Chinese. My first impression: four stars and a half.
5.0 de un máximo de 5 estrellas My favorite Falstaff on video. 15 de noviembre de 2016
Por jgus - Publicado en
Formato: DVD Compra verificada
Oh, so much better than the BBC set with Terfel. I like the more original sets and lightheartedness. All roles played by the best of their generation, Marilyn Horne is a hoot.

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