A MOZART GALA FROM SALZBURG DVD-VIDEO 0734430
This straightforward gala evening from the 2006 Salzburg Festival is a stand-up-and-sing affair featuring some of the current mightiest singers on the operatic scene . . . Young Daniel Harding . . . has managed to mellow without losing any of his originality. Perhaps the Vienna Philharmonic, here at its most lush, luscious, and responsive, has coerced him into more traditional tempos, although he still has very much his own voice, particularly in the purely instrumental sections of the concert. After a dramatic, sensibly paced overture to Don Giovanni . . . René Pape takes the stage and sings a delightful, big-voiced "Catalog Aria" . . . Michael Schade, in lovely voice for "Dalla sua pace", is next, and his forceful singing is as impressive as his long-lined pianissimo is embracing. Fireworks ensue with soprano Patricia Petibon's reading of Aspasia's manic-depressive aria, "Nel grave tormento" from Mitridate. She is a remarkable artist, incapable of being dull -- or apparently of singing off-key . . . Her high staccatos and coloratura are spectacular. Coloratura is also featured in Michael Schade's performance of "Si all'impero" from La clemenza di Tito, and he handles it well, with Tito's regal bearing clear throughout. Magdalena Kozená . . . is a most welcome presence in Sesto's "Parto, parto". She and Harding take an odd ritard and use great rubato in the bars before the presto section, but it works. I'm still not certain that Kozená is not a soprano. The estimable Thomas Hampson arrives to sing Guglielmo's difficult "Rivolgete a lui lo sguardo" from Cosi, which he begins with an attention-getting rolled "r" that is as cloying as it is typical of this artist. Has a baritone ever been more pleased with his own work? The voice is in good shape . . . The overture to Idomeneo enters with fury and gravitas, the winds in particularly fine form. Ekaterina Siurina then sings Ilia's lovely "Se il padre perdei", her lyric sound presenting a distinctive edge. She is joined by Kozená for a gorgeous "S'io non moro a questi accenti". Anna Netrebko arrives for the evening's last vocal number, Elettra's aria "D'Oreste, d'Ajace", sung with stupendous temperament, pinpoint accuracy, and big, round tone, and she wows the casual-looking audience. All of the women in the concert remind us that though stand-up-and-sing evenings still exist, gone are the days of divas being unemotive and stodgy. Here are three stunning women acting with voice and personality . . . Harding then leads the Vienna Philharmonic in a fine reading of Mozart's "Prague" Symphony, with a majestic, slow opening, with special emphasis on the low strings and timpani, a relaxed andante, and a furious presto, reminiscent of his Virgin Don Giovanni in its highlighting of dance rhythms . . . This is a splendid way to spend an evening.
Perhaps the Vienna Philharmonic, here at its most lush, luscious and responsive, has coerced him into more traditional tempos, although he still has very much his own voice, particularly in the purely instrumental sections of the concert. After a dramatically, sensibly paced Overture to "Don Giovanni" . . . René Pape takes the stage and sings a delightful, big-voiced Catalogue Aria . . . Michael Schade, in lovely voice for "Dalla sua pace" . . . is next, and his forceful singing is as impressive as his long-lined pianissimo is embracing. Fireworks ensue with soprano Patricia Petibon's reading of Aspasia's manic-depressive aria 'Nel grave tormento' from "Mitridate". She is a remarkable artist, incapable of being dull or, apparently, singing off-key . . . her facial expressions . . . are in character. Her high staccatos and coloratura are spectacular . . . Welcome Magdalena Kozená . . . sounding fresh and warm in Sesto's 'Parto, parto' . . . The Overture to "Idomeneo" enters with fury and gravitas, the VPO winds on particularly fine form. Ekaterina Siurina then sings Ilia's lovely 'Se il padre perdei', her lyric sound having a distinctive edge. She is joined by Kozená for a gorgeous 'S'io non moro a questi accenti'. Anna Netrebko arrives for the evening's last vocal number, Elettra's aria 'D'Oreste, d'Aiace', sung with stupendous temperament, pin-point accuracy and big, round tone: she wows the casual-looking audience . . . here are four stunning women acting with voice and personality . . . Harding then leads the Vienna Philharmonic in a fine reading of Mozart's "Prague" Symphony, with a majestic, slow opening . . . This is a splendid release.
. . . all have sufficient stage presence to infuse the songs with characterization and dramatic interest. The attractive set is simple and elegant . . . There are no attempts at gimmickry; it is a tasteful, elegant affair that is a treat for the eyes and ears. The 93 minutes are filled with exemplary music-making, appealing to Mozart-lovers and a nice introduction for the musical neophytes.
The orchestral playing is impeccably groomed, opening with a fast and fiery account of the "Don Giovanni" overture followed later by a dynamic "Idomeneo" overture and finishing with an accomplished "Prague" Symphony . . . The Russians sing magnificently too, Anna Netrebko nearly bringing the house down with Elettra's 'fury' aria from "Idomeneo" and Ekaterina Siurina coring as Ilia with her fresh tone and simplicity of manner. Michael Schade is vocally impeccable as Don Ottavio and Tito, René Pape vigorous if earnest as Leporello . . . Magdalena Kozená is the most intense singer . . .
Patricia Petibon zeigte sich an diesem Vormittag in einer Arie aus "Mitridate" für perfekte Stimmbeherrschung und einem an barocke Gewohnheiten orientierten Gesangsstil verantwortlich. Thomas Hampson hingegen war mit Guglielmos "Rivolgete a lui lo sguardo" ein gelassen aber überaus sympathisch und wissend agierender Mozart-Charmeur. Magdalena Kozená stand mit Sestos "Parto"-Arie exemplarisch für Mozarts Kunst, wirkungsvolle Hosenrollen zu komponieren. Ekaterina Siurina verkaufte sich blendend als Ilia im Solo und im Duett mit Magdalena Kozená (Idamante). Den stärksten Beifall für die mitreißendste Nummer des Konzerts verdiente sich Anna Netrebko . . . [sie] meisterte Elettras Abgangsarie (ebenfalls "Idomeneo") mit fulminanter Agressivität und vollendeter Klangkultur. Die Wiener Philharmoniker begleiteten die Solisten professionell und auf spieltechnisch höchstem Niveau . . . man [hört] der in den schnellen Sätzen frisch und im Mittelteil spannungsvoll geatmeten Sinfonie Nr. 38 ("Prager") und sieht dem mit seinen Händen weiträumig gestaltenden Harding sehr gerne zu.
Le plus attendu des Daniel Harding dirige les chanteurs attendus dans Mozart, plus la "Prague". René Pape dans Leporello, Anna Netrebko en Elettra, Patricia Petibon en Aspasie valent le détour. Plus Michael Schade, Magdalena Kozená etc. Convivial.
René Pape está magnético en el aria del catálogo, como la sentida Magdalena Kozená en "Parto, ma tu ben mio" de La clemenza di Tito . . . estupenda vocal y dramáticamente Anna Netrebko como Elektra ("D'Oreste, d'Aiace"). Muy bien Patricia Petibon ("Nel grave tormento", Mitridate) . . . Thomas Hampson, con sus años, tiene una clase que lo convierte en un clásico. Les dirige magníficamente Daniel Harding, que ya ha demostrado su raza de mozartiano . . . La excelencia es la consabida.