Donizetti/Mazzola - Glyndebourne
Roland Kirk: Three Sided Dream
(2015/Accentus/all Naxos Blu-ray)
B-/B-/B-/C+/B- Sound: B-/B+/B-/B-/B Extras: C+ Main
for more Classical & Jazz music releases....
we have Handel's Admeto
(2009) staged by Dorris Dorrie, solo dance and choreography by
Tadashi Endo with Conductor Nicholas McGegan and the
Festspielorchester Gottinggen delving into the world of the Samurai.
We reviewed a 2006 version from the same video label from
the Opernhaus Halle at this link...
this is a reissue of the same program I reviewed a few years ago at
there is one slight difference. Maybe it is just the way it aged or
its the new pressing, but the sound here (esp. the 5.1 mix) might not
be quite as good as the older pressing. This happens and this was
going to be covered by another writer, but when I noticed this, I had
to take it on, so that's my one slight critique. If you are
sound-obsessed, you might want to get the older pressing, but
otherwise, its the same disc. I also think the 2006 version remains
Piano Concerto K. 488 + K. 219
is the big surprise here because not only are the performances great,
the recording of the music is of exceptional fidelity (more on that
below in the tech section) that will impress audiophiles not used to
video releases being to particularly well recorded. This is not to
say the Naxos-distributed labels do not often have great sound; the
definitely do, but this one will even surprise them and break the
stereotype of video sound standards being below audio-only recording
from a 2015 performance (Mozart Week in Salzburg), Marc Minkowski
conducts with Thibault Noally on violin and Francesco Corti ion
fortepiano, this runs only 72 minutes (again, which this were longer)
and is one of the best instrumental performances I've seen in a while
in any music genre on Blu-ray. If you like this, you must see it.
is the tale of a of the title character (Michael Fabiano) as a man in
power, turning controversially Catholic, his wife supporting him, but
her former lover (with a different religion) turning up to cause
trouble and form a triangle that will have political implications.
This follows Donizettl works about challenging, memorable individuals
(see elsewhere on this site) so this is in keeping with those
releases and works. Presented by the Glyndebourne
from 2015 with Enrique Mazzola as conductor, this runs a somewhat
long 117 minutes, but it is well-rounded, consistent and pretty good.
Roland Kirk: Three Sided Dream
a good, if slightly short documentary biography of the
sometimes-controversial and not discussed enough Jazz musician who
was part of the counterculture, Civil Rights Movement and great
period of the arts on TV in the 1960s and 1970s. Though interviews
from those who knew him, some unexpected animation and a very
generous, extensive array of film and video clips of his TV
appearances and work, plus home movies and the like, this program
sets the record well about what he did, achieve and how we lost him
too soon. Needless to say the music is constantly impressive and his
showmanship is only outdone by his talent and ambition. Definitely
worth a look, especially for serious music and history fans.
we have a very interesting entry in Alban Berg's Wozzeck
(also recorded in 2015) from the Operhaus Zurich with Fabio Luisi
conducting and Christian Gerhaher in the title role of this surreal
opera about how dark and ugly the world is and can get. In a smart
visual move, the people are made to blend into the background of the
stage, all looking aged and like they are part of aged paper,
brownish beige with line, agedness and a sense of slight dread
visually that makes it seem alive, but with a touch of death, the
dead and mortality. That makes it one of the most interesting stage
operas visually we’ve seen in a while and to pull this off is not
as easy as it looks. And I should add I has nothing to do with the
definition of the HD presentation, it is the look itself.
only issue is that maybe it could have tried to do more with the
visually successful situation and made possible further statements
about mortality that it is addressing and this can feel longer to
watch than usual if the visual style throws you off. Still,
ambitious and successful enough in what it pulls off.
1080i 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image on Admeto
have some detail and motion blur issues, but are not that much worse
than the 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfers on
which have their own detail issues and are only slightly less
troubled. The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer
includes old black & white videotape, color videotape, black &
white film, color film and film in old videotape transfers, so this
one can show the age of the materials used, but some of the film and
even video look pretty good and the new interview segments are shot
in HD. Expect some new, simple animation too.
for sound, Mozart
is here in a DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.0 lossless mix, but it is
offered at 96/24, sounds really good and is the sonic champ here.
The rest of the releases sport DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless
mixes, with Wozzeck
coming in second place for great sound with a fine consistent
soundfield and the rest tying for third place. All discs also offer
PCM 2.0 Stereo mixes, but none are as good as the DTS versions.
just miss the mark in consistency, but are fine for what they offer,
offers a wide mix of new simple stereo, old monophonic sound, his
recordings at times in fine stereo playback and other audio. Its
impressive the mix of sources sound as good as they do.
in all five releases once again include multi-lingual booklets on
each respective release, with Wozzeck
offering an unusually thick, high quality volume. Admeto
adds a Behind
The Scenes featurette,
adds two bonus music performances, Poliuto
adds a piece in its UK premiere, Cast Gallery and interview with
Stage Director Mariame Clement and
performed in 1977 and interview with music scholar Joel Dorn on the