Notes and Editorial Reviews
"I have no hesitation in calling this the most visually beautiful opera video ever.... Even the choreography is breathtaking...All three principals are flat-out magnificent...The Orchestra de Paris provides sumptuous playing, and Kent Nagano continues to demonstrate that he is a great conductor."
Picture Format: 16:9 Anamorph; Sound Format: LPCM stereo, Dolby Digital 5.0, DTS 5.0; Running Time: 108 Mins; Recording Date: December 2002
Sung in Russian with optional subtitles in English, German, French, Spanish and Italian.
This Châtelet revival of Le Coq d'Or brings to the stage once again the great Kabuki actor Ennosuke III's strikingly original staging of Rimsky-Korsakov's
opera, first mounted in co-production with the San Francisco Opera in 1984.
King Dodon - Albert Schagidullin
Prince Afron - Andrei Breus
Amelfa - Elena Manistina
Queen of Shemakha - Olga Trifonova
Prince Guidon - Ilya Levinsky
General Polkan - Ilya Bannik
Astrologer - Barry Banks
Golden Cockerel - Yuri Maria Saenz
Stage Director: Isao Takashima; Libretto by: Vladimir Bel'sky
R E V I E W S:
"The music will be familiar to all, as the orchestral suite drawn from the opera has long been a popular staple. The opening trumpet call, the cockerel’s cry, and the queen’s Hymn to the Sun are well known, and they permeate the score in leitmotif fashion. What about those three impossible roles? Although nostalgia drags many opera buffs toward the past, we live in a golden age of singing: All three principals are flat-out magnificent, by far the best I have heard for each role. Minor roles are never less than satisfactory, and the fine chorus carries the third act, with its Boris Godunov takeoffs. The Orchestra de Paris provides sumptuous playing, and Kent Nagano continues to demonstrate that he is a great conductor.
Audio recordings of operas are usually more successful than videos. Each of us has our own production in mind, usually based on a conglomeration of performances we have seen. A video denies us that liberty, forcing us to watch some other guy’s idea of how the opera should look. This one turns the tables; few could imagine such a glorious production. It is staged by Ennosuke Ichikawa, famed Kabuki actor, producer, creator, and director. Nearly the entire production crew is Japanese: director Isao Takashima, stage designer Setsu Asakura, and costume designer Tomio Mohri. The lighting is by Jean Kalman...the costumes, sets, and highly stylized action are lovely, amid a kaleidoscope of brilliantly lit reds, golds, and blacks; Ms. Trifonova is every inch the proud beauty she portrays. Even the choreography is breathtaking; wait till you see the dancers racing down the stairs in act III. Don’t turn it off when the epilogue ends, for the highly choreographed bows are part of the show. The DVD also includes tantalizing excerpts from eight other opera videos.
I have no hesitation in calling this the most visually beautiful opera video ever." - James H. North. FANFARE
Works on This Recording
Golden Cockerel by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Olga Trifonova (Soprano),
Andrei Breus (Baritone),
Albert Schagidullin (Baritone),
Elena Manistina (Alto)
St. Petersburg Mariinsky Theater Chorus
Written: 1906-1907; Russia
Date of Recording: December 2002
Venue: Le Châtelet, Paris
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