Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Classical Music > Opera > Ballet > Concert > Handel/Admeto (Unitel Classica/C Major) + Pouleric/Dialogues des Carmelites (ArtHaus) + The Pharaoh’s Daughter/Bolshoi Ballet (Bel Air Classiques/Naxos Blu-rays)

Handel/Admeto (Unitel Classica/C Major) + Pouleric/Dialogues des Carmelites (ArtHaus) + The Pharaoh’s Daughter/Bolshoi

Ballet (Bel Air Classiques/Naxos Blu-rays)


Picture: B- (Dialogues: C+)     Sound: B     Extras: C (Admeto: C+)     Concerts: B-/C+/B



Looking at more Classical Blu-rays distributed by Naxos, we see one of them is a classic we covered in another performance a while ago.  Handel’s comic Admeto was issued in a performance by Openhaus Halle via ArtHaus.  Here was our coverage:





This second version is staged by Doris Dorrie, has Solo Dance and Choreography by Tadashi Endo and features the Festpielorchester Gottingen led by conductor Nicholas McGegan.  I thought it was good, but not great and the humor did not appeal to me either.  Maybe the other version was better, but this was simply not as consistent as expected.  I would try the other Blu-ray first, also available from Naxos.


Francis Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites stage directed by Nikolaus Lehnhoff, conducted by Simone Young and featuring the Philharmoniker Hamburg is based on the Georges Bernanos play about spirituality and existence.  I was not a big fan of this work and the people all seem doomed before the first scene, with the work almost telegraphing its intents in advance.  Performances are good, but the work was disappointing overall.  I would like another version to compare to.


Finally, we have the ballet La Fille Du Pharaon (The Pharaoh’s Daughter) with no less than the Bolshoi Ballet and it is the clear winner here for performance and even playback.  Svetlana Zakharova and Sergei Filin are among a strong cast and excellent dancers/performers, Pierre LaCotte (after Marius Petipa) created the ballet itself, Cesare Pugni did the music and the Musical Direction is by Alexander Sotnikov.  It is very energetic, a little politically incorrect and set decades ago as an Englishman visits Egypt and complications ensue.



The 1080i 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image on all the productions can be colorful and the money is in all the productions, but just about all of them have motion blur, but Dialogues is particularly weak.  The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) lossless mixes on all the titles are rather excellent throughout, though Pharaoh recreates the open area of the stage that might seem weak, but is accurate.  All have 5.1 mixes, but Dialogues is 7.1 and it manages not to sound too stretched out or thinned out.  Extras on all include thick, essay and illustration-loaded booklets inside the Blu-ray cases, while Admeto adds a behind-the-scenes featurette.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com