GOUNOD, C.-F.: Romeo et Juliette (Salzburg Festival, 2008)

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- (Disc 1)
Romeo et Juliette
Libretto/Text Author: Barbier, Jules
Libretto/Text Author: Carre, Michel

Frere Laurent: Petrenko, Mikhail
Le Comte Capulet: Struckmann, Falk
Le Comte Paris: Hausmann, Mathias
Le Duc de Verone: Horn, Christian van

Set/Stage Designer: Yeargan, Michael
Costume Designer: Zuber, Catherine
Lighting Designer: Tipton, Jennifer
Choreographer: Brock, Chase
Stage Director: Sher, Bartlett
Television Director: Large, Brian

Date of Production: 2008
Festival: Salzburg Festival
Venue: Felsenreitschule, Salzburg
Playing Time: 02:43:00
Catalogue Number: A04001512
UPC:

Synopsis

While Charles Gounod's Romeo et Juliette is less well-known than his Faust, it is blessed with four great show-stopping love duets that let its two title roles bask in lyrical luxury. In this Salzburg Festival production recorded at the Felsenreitschule, the titular heroes are the much acclaimed Mexican tenor Rolando Villazon and the young Georgian soprano Nino Machaidze EUR" two singers and personalities with the makings of a new "dream couple".

"Villazon is "ideal" Romeo. His vocal cords seem to be grafted directly onto his heart" (Der Tagesspiegel) EUR" a charming image that captures the singer's one-hundred-percent commitment to emotion, his hot-blooded stage artistry, and his ability to express erotic fulfillment, the blaze of passion, and the hopelessness of his fate with his voice alone. His Juliette, Nino Machaidze, unites captivating good looks with a bright, clear voice and an agile, youthful stage presence EUR" a singer on her way to stardom!

Broadway director Bartlett Sher and his team succeed in evoking Shakespeare's Verona with a few evocative props, many fine costumes and much plot-driven action. In the eyes of many, however, the real discovery of the production is the young Montreal conductor Yannick Nezet-Seguin, who gives a vivid and passionate reading of Gounod's work. In the words of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Nezet-Seguin "plunges so earnestly into the specific charm of the score that he brings all of its treasures to light... With the Mozarteum Orchester Salzburg, playing with a marvelous wealth of nuances, he intones a hymn to a sensuality that reconciles religious, aesthetic and erotic moments..." This vibrant interpretation of "Romeo et Juliette" makes a case for this intensely lyrical work as a companion piece of equal value to Faust".

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