Magazine article Gramophone

Verdi: Il Trovatore

Magazine article Gramophone

Verdi: Il Trovatore

Article excerpt

Verdi [DVD] [BR]  Il trovatore  Gaston Rivero ten              Manrico Anna Netrebko sop              Leonora Pldcido Domingo bar      Count di Luna Marina Prudenskaya mez         Azucena Adrian Sampetrean bass        Ferrando Anna Lapkovskaja mez              Ines 

Staatskapelle Berlin / Daniel Barenboim Stage director Philipp Stolzl DG [F] [DVD] 073 5132GH; [F] [BR] 073 5133GH (145' * NTSC * 16:9 * 1080i * DTS-HD MA5.1, DTS5.1 & PCM stereo * 0 * s) Recorded live at the Staatsoper Berlin, December 2013

Here is a dilemma. Is the presence of Anna Netrebko and Placido Domingo enough to justify a purchase, or does Philipp Stolzl's childish production rule this DVD out of court? In the latest of her big Verdi soprano roles, Netrebko gives a completely authoritative performance. Although her shaping of Verdi's vocal lines is not especially individual, she has voice to spare and nothing sounds beyond her--not the Act 1 cabaletta (both verses, skilfully negotiated), not the confrontation with the Conte di Luna (pulsating with drama and desperation), and certainly not her super-confident 'D'amor sull'ali rosee', crowned with high-class floated top notes. At this stage of his career Domingo is less well suited to the Conte di Luna than Verdi's 'older' baritone roles, such as Simon Boccanegra and Giorgio Germont. He sounds rather tired at the start but his still majestic tenor-baritone, boosted by an undimmed ability to command the stage, comes good by the end. …

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