Mozart - Le Nozze di Figaro (James Levine) [2010 / 1985]
NTSC 4:3 (720x480) VBR | Italiano (LinearPCM, 2 ch) Italiano (DTS, 6 ch) | 6.95 Gb + 5.75 Gb (2*DVD9) Classical | TMO | Sub: English | 192 min | +3% Recovery
This is an absolute must for lovers of this opera. I remember watching it live on TV, probably a PBS presentation, and was overwhelmed then and that was in 1985. Being able to finally own this brings back those memories and more. Where else could you assemble such a perfect cast. VanNess and Thomas Allen and the perfectly matched Count and Countess. Von Stade is world renowned for her Cherubino and is priceless here. You get to see her close ups as she is being sent "off to war" and they are a delight. Susanna is not an easy role, but the petite Kathleen Battle is perfect. Her beauty of voice and person are the perfect companion to Raimondi. I've saved Ruggero Raimondi for last as I feel this is his opera. He owns it without overshawdowing his fellow cast members. His stage presence, sense of humor, his beautiful flexible voice have never been so in evidence as in this performance. I don't think I will ever enjoy a Figaro like his. Maestro Levine gave everything just the right balance between his orchestra and his singers. A more perfect example of artistry in the pit and on the stage are rare, and this is rare indeed. Kudos to all involved, especially our Figaro.
Figaro – Ruggero Raimondi Susanna – Kathleen Battle Count Almaviva – Thomas Allen Countess Almaviva – Carol Vaness Cherubino – Frederica von Stade Don Bartolo – Artur Korn Marcellina – Jocelyne Taillon The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus Conductor – James Levine