£16 post free World-wide

 


555 sonatas 9Cds mp3 files
Only £22


 


Benjamin: Written on Skin £16

Search
What's New
Previous CDs
Concerts
Jazz
Nostalgia
Composers
Resources
Announce
Labels index


Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

  Classical Editor Rob Barnett    



Some items
to consider


Shostakovich 14 Petrenko


Rachmaninov #3
Prokofiev #2

 


Dunedin Consort

Peter Grimes

Hymn of Jesus: Sea Drift

Complete Mozart Edition
Mozart complete edition

Vaughan Williams Symphonies 5 & 8 £11

Weiner, Klepper, Bloch, Schulhoff £12 post free


Available again

REVIEW



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
CDAccord
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly newsletter
 

 

alternatively
MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS

Giuseppe VERDI (1813 - 1901)
Aida
Maria Chiara (soprano) - Aida; Carlo Striuli (bass) - Il Re; Dolora Zajick (mezzo) - Amneris; Kristján Jóhannsson (tenor) - Radamès; Juan Pons (baritone) - Amonasro; Nicola Ghiuselev (bass) - Ramfis; Anna Sciatti (soprano) - Una sacerdotessa; Angelo Casertano (tenor) - Un messaggero; Ballet, Orchestra and Chorus of the Arena di Verona/Nello Santi
rec. live, Arena di Verona 1992
Stage Director: Gianfranco De Bosio
Set Designer: Rinaldo Olovieri (after Ettore Fagliuoli’s design for the 1913 Verona premiere)
Costume Designer: Auguste Mariette (as at the 1913 Verona premiere)
Lighting Designer: Arnaldo Campolini
Choreography: Susanna Egri
Directed for TV and Video by Gianni Casalino
Sound formats: LPCM Stereo, DD 5.1
Subtitles: GB, DE, FR, ES, IT
Picture format: 4:3
Region code: 0
ARTHAUS MUSIK 107253 [146:00]

Experience Classicsonline



The ideal way of enjoying a performance at the Arena di Veronais to be there, preferably in a good seat in the stalls, where there is a chance also to see the faces of the singers. From the most distant seats the faces are not larger than a pin-head. On video the magnificence of the sets tends to be compromised but you often get close to the singers, which is all to the good - if the singers are good actors. This specific production has its interest primarily for historical reasons: the opportunity to see sets and costumes that are reconstructions of the original production from 1913. I saw the same production twice in the 1980s - the 1913 reconstruction was first shown in 1982 - and since the memory inevitably has dimmed it was nice to revisit it in all its glory. Those who never have been at the Arena will get at least a little of the atmosphere while watching this DVD.
 
Unfortunately the musical outcome of the visit is less inspiring. Maria Chiara was the Aïda in Italy for many years. Since I first heard her on records in the beginning of the 1970s she has been one of my favourite sopranos. By 1992 her voice had lost some of its bloom and she had developed a vibrato that under pressure became rather disturbing. It’s a pity since she has so deep an insight into the role. There are several places where she shows her class, for instance a heavenly pianissimo in the Nile aria. That said, by and large she is disappointing and her poor acting is a further minus. Those who want Chiara’s Aida are better served by the La Scala production from a few years earlier, conducted by Lorin Maazel with Pavarotti and Dimitrova in good shape as Radames and Amneris. It is available on both CD and DVD. There is also a DVD from Verona 1981 which I haven’t seen, but there she is partnered by the formidable Fiorenza Cossotto and the somewhat stentorian but glorious Niccola Martinucci. Cossotto and Martinucci were regulars at Verona for many years. Stentorian is also the word for the Icelandic tenor Kristján Johannsson, who sings Radamès on the present issue. In a few places, notably the duet in act III, he attempts to sing softly but otherwise it’s full throttle. He too is a stiff and unconvincing actor. In that respect Dolora Zajick’s Amneris is better and vocally she is in fine fettle though her big voice is sometimes afflicted by a wobble. Juan Pons, another big-voiced singer, is a magnificent Amonasro, but I wish he could have been more lyrical in his solo in the triumph scene. Nicola Ghiuselev is a strong Ramfis with a lot of stage presence. Carlo Striuli’s King is more strained than I have heard him before but he sings and acts with great authority.
 
There is a fair amount of shaky ensemble in the orchestra, noticeable not least in the prelude, and Nello Santi’s conducting is only routine. In short, there are many reasons to avoid this issue.
 
Göran Forsling

see also reviews by Paul Corfield Godfrey and Robert Farr

Masterwork Index: Aida

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools






Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.