Author Topic: Currentzis Opera Recordings  (Read 11138 times)

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Offline jochanaan

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #40 on: May 01, 2014, 10:32:23 AM »
I think that Currentzis is an example of a relatively new phenomenon:  conductors who find themselves at ease in different repertoires, different styles and different performing practices...
Actually, that was the way of the old music directors.  They had to do everything.  Of course, you got specialists, but by and large, the resident conductors actually conducted just about everything the orchestras played.  That changed with the jet age.  But now I'm glad the younger musicians are becoming multi-specialists again. 8)
Imagination + discipline = creativity

Offline zeplin

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #41 on: May 20, 2014, 10:37:22 AM »
Thank you so much for the review and suggestion. I am going to go on my spofity and possibly singist account right now and listen to it. I :)
« Last Edit: May 27, 2014, 04:03:50 PM by zeplin »

Offline king ubu

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #42 on: May 27, 2014, 03:48:16 PM »
Just read through this thread ... initially, I was very sceptical: Kermes as countess - does the world need that? But then I had kinda written her off, as the "ulknudel" she used to be and was not aware she was moving away from that image. So yes, she's surprisingly good to me!

In can kind of relate to that laboratory comment though. To me, the entire performance sounds a bit too controlled, somewhat too even. Musically, it's very good, the orchestra is fine - but somehow I'm missing the real highlights a bit. Maybe that's the price you got to pay for such an even performance though, I don't know. Anyway, I'm certainly intrigued enough that I plan to give it a second spin very soon (only got the recording - on CD - a couple of weeks ago).

As for favourite recordings, I'd go with Kleiber ahead of Giulini and Böhm. But that's only an intermediate result, as I've not really delved into Gardiner (whose "Zauberflöte" and "Così fan tutte" I love very much, so I have high hopes here, too), Jacobs (Gens should be great!) nor Furtwängler ... I have a few other unplayed recordings around where I have smaller hopes (Klemperer, Colin Davis - did Klemp botch this, too? His "Zauberflöte" has so many great moments from the singers, best queen of the night ever - at least next to Wilma Lipp - but what's the use if the piece don't work?), and I'm not too big on Karajan (I've no memories of his recording, though I know for a fact I've listened to it).
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Offline ritter

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #43 on: September 20, 2014, 03:43:08 AM »
The cycle continues   :) :



To be released in early November...
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Offline Wanderer

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #44 on: September 20, 2014, 04:35:58 AM »
The cycle continues   :) :



To be released in early November...

Can't wait.

For the record, here's my initial reaction to their thrilling Nozze di Figaro:
.



Superb, splendid, magnificent, dazzling, quintessential Mozart. Add whichever superlatives suit you. That's how good this is.

Offline Moonfish

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #45 on: September 20, 2014, 10:59:24 AM »
The cycle continues   :) :



To be released in early November...

Enticing....!  :)
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Offline mc ukrneal

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #46 on: December 10, 2014, 06:32:02 PM »
I've now had a chance to listen to this (Marriage of Figaro). And I am not surprised that those that liked Jacobs liked this. It's better than Jacobs, but I'd take many other versions over this. The singing is mixed, from reasonably good (if too prettified) to pretty bad (Countess was horrible - a real blight on this set, while Susanna is ok as long as she is singing without weight, but the minute more oompf is needed, a let down). The orchestra is simply marvelous (if underpowered in terms of brass some of the time). Too often the orchestra is moving intently (with drive and energy, as well as character), but the singing simply does not keep up with the quality. There is also too much acting at times instead of singing. This simply detracts from the story and the drama. The continuo (or fortepiano, or whatever it is) can be irritating at times, but is thankfully unnoticed in most of the set pieces (a direct comparion with Jacobs and Jacobs is much superior here).

My ultimate impression is some excellent orchestral playing let down by gimmicks (presumably to hide the defects of the singers). This is fine in a live performance, and even necessary, but not good enough for an opera recording I'd like to return to over and over.

EDIT: Incidentally, if you are looking for a good review that accurately identifies its qualities and deficencies, I'd recommend this one:
http://www.amazon.com/review/ROLCC5GEC6LN1/ref=cm_cr_dp_cmt?ie=UTF8&ASIN=B00CE26AU6&nodeID=5174&store=music#wasThisHelpful. I think the importance of the singing isn't as weighted as much as I would, which is perhaps why he comes to a happier conclusion.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2014, 06:35:30 PM by mc ukrneal »
Offenbach gets a raw deal in recordings considering his talent! For a discussion of this outstanding composer too little recorded: http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,5572.

Offline Mandryka

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #47 on: December 11, 2014, 08:53:05 AM »
I've now had a chance to listen to this (Marriage of Figaro). And I am not surprised that those that liked Jacobs liked this. It's better than Jacobs, but I'd take many other versions over this. The singing is mixed, from reasonably good (if too prettified) to pretty bad (Countess was horrible - a real blight on this set, while Susanna is ok as long as she is singing without weight, but the minute more oompf is needed, a let down). The orchestra is simply marvelous (if underpowered in terms of brass some of the time). Too often the orchestra is moving intently (with drive and energy, as well as character), but the singing simply does not keep up with the quality. There is also too much acting at times instead of singing. This simply detracts from the story and the drama. The continuo (or fortepiano, or whatever it is) can be irritating at times, but is thankfully unnoticed in most of the set pieces (a direct comparion with Jacobs and Jacobs is much superior here).

My ultimate impression is some excellent orchestral playing let down by gimmicks (presumably to hide the defects of the singers). This is fine in a live performance, and even necessary, but not good enough for an opera recording I'd like to return to over and over.

EDIT: Incidentally, if you are looking for a good review that accurately identifies its qualities and deficencies, I'd recommend this one:
http://www.amazon.com/review/ROLCC5GEC6LN1/ref=cm_cr_dp_cmt?ie=UTF8&ASIN=B00CE26AU6&nodeID=5174&store=music#wasThisHelpful. I think the importance of the singing isn't as weighted as much as I would, which is perhaps why he comes to a happier conclusion.

What do you mean?
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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #48 on: December 11, 2014, 09:20:28 AM »
I think in this kind of success, half the credit actually goes to the engineering and artistic direction. It's not surprising that Nicolas Bartholomée supervised these recordings, they have his signature all over.
Actually, the impact of a few engineers/producers on many recordings is widely known but not really acknowledged. It is clear that Walter Legge, Wolf Erichson, Nicolas Bartholomée were as important in some discographic successes as conductors and other artists. But you don't see their names in big letters on the covers...

Offline mc ukrneal

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Re: Mozart Marriage of Figaro from Perm
« Reply #49 on: December 11, 2014, 10:03:15 AM »
What do you mean?
I mean that there is a lot of declaration and emotion when instead the singer should be singing. So it interrupts the singing somewhat, presumably to show some sort of action/emotion on stage. I think they should do this through the singing of the song rather than constant declamations (and I am not referring to the recitatives where this is more appropriate).
Offenbach gets a raw deal in recordings considering his talent! For a discussion of this outstanding composer too little recorded: http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,5572.

Offline knight66

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Re: Currentzis Opera Recodrings
« Reply #50 on: November 05, 2016, 09:24:50 AM »
I am bumping this thread and have renamed it. The final of the three da Ponte operas from Currentzis has just been issued. I reviewed the Figaro and my misgivings were mainly around the females soloists. For that very reason I did not buy Cosi. However, the Giovanni has a different cast of female singers and I much prefer them.

This is Currentzis second complete recording of Don Giovanni. His first was completed in 2014. But the conductor binned it, he did not think that the chemistry between the singers worked. Yes, he has that kind of artistic pull. The cast is all new to me and I am happy with them all. The whole thing is a fizzing and energetic as with the Figaro, but add danger and drama, ultra drama. When Giovanni is taken to Hell, I had goose flesh on my arms. The playing is spot on, pointed and individual with lots of colours. On occasion they do sound like they are being tested to destruction. I was not sure about this group's Dido and Aneas with everything either tearingly fast or very slow; was that going to become a mannerism? But although there are many fast, some driven, stretches, the relaxations don't sound exagerated to me. Places where I want space, such as the Mask Trio near the end of Act 1, work very effectively, floated as it ought to be.

This opera most suits Currentzis approach to the three Mozart masterpieces. I think it is a great set which will sweep away doubt that surfaced on the previous two sets.

Mike
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Offline ritter

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Re: Currentzis Opera Recodrings
« Reply #51 on: November 06, 2016, 03:06:48 AM »
Thanks for the coments on the new Don Giovanni, Mike. :) I enjoyed the Figaro very much, but not the Così, I must confess. It all sounded hurried and contrived to me, and blandly sung to boot (but I should give the recording a second chance).

A review of the Don Giovanni appears in today's Guardian:

Quote from: Nicholas Kenyon in The Guardian
On the evidence of this disorientating and sometimes shocking Don Giovanni, Teodor Currentzis is to Mozart what Emma Rice is to Shakespeare: sceptical, questioning, reinventing with bright lights and vividly colourful insights. Currentzis’s Russian orchestra steals the show with its incisive approach (but sack the clever-clever fortepianist). The ensemble is superbly tight, though some of the little-known cast work better than others, with Vito Priante’s Leporello far more grabbing than Dimitris Tiliakos as Giovanni. Là ci darem la mano is reimagined as a pastoral musette, while the Serenade sounds like a ukulele ensemble; the finale is brutal, and achieves the “cold, pitiless majesty” that Hermann Abert heard in this tremendous score.

https://www.theguardian.com/music/2016/nov/06/mozart-don-giovanni-musicaeterna-teodor-currentzis-review
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Offline knight66

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Re: Currentzis Opera Recodrings
« Reply #52 on: November 06, 2016, 10:05:07 AM »
Thanks for the link. I can see where the Guardian critic has problems with the interpretation, though I think the Giovanni is full of character. One of the strengths is the vigor of the recits, tossed off with bags of expression.

I hope the mooted Tristan comes off.

Mike
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Currentzis Opera Recodrings
« Reply #53 on: November 16, 2016, 11:59:47 AM »
One thing I liked more than I expected in the Don was the piano. I've not finished the whole recording yet.
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Offline ritter

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Re: Currentzis Opera Recodrings
« Reply #54 on: November 17, 2016, 01:00:51 AM »

I hope the mooted Tristan comes off.

Mike
Currentzis was supposed to conduct Tristan here in Madrid a couple of seasons ago (in the Peter Sellars / Bill Viola production form LA and Paris), but pulled out in the last minute, and was substituted by Marc Piollet.

I really am looking forward to listening to the new Don Giovanni (after the relative letdown of the same forces' Così recording)...
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Offline king ubu

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Re: Currentzis Opera Recodrings
« Reply #55 on: November 30, 2016, 02:18:27 PM »
I really am looking forward to listening to the new Don Giovanni (after the relative letdown of the same forces' Così recording)...

Same here - it's been on the pile for a couple of weeks, but it will have to wait some more, no time next weekend either.
Es wollt ein meydlein grasen gan:
Fick mich, lieber Peter!
Und do die roten röslein stan:
Fick mich, lieber Peter!
Fick mich mehr, du hast dein ehr.
Kannstu nit, ich wills dich lern.
Fick mich, lieber Peter!

http://ubus-notizen.blogspot.ch/

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