Notes & Reviews:
A superlative staging of Puccini's Tosca by Italian opera producer Hugo de Ana brought to you from the world-famous Arena di Verona and complete with all the splendour that a Puccini opera demands! The popular tragedy is sung by a dream team cast of excellent singer-actors and conducted by long-established Arena di Verona conductor Daniel Oren. The recording captures one of those special Verona summer evenings, when the audience fills the historic circle in expectation of the enjoyment of an open-air opera performance. Verona's amphitheatre, known as the 'arena', provides an atmospheric setting for the summer festival. To view an opera in the former amphitheatre, the second largest of its kind after the Colosseum in Rome, can truly be regarded as an impressive experience. The DVD, however, provides a closer look at the stage and the singers and brings this dramatic opera directly to the home viewer.
This DVD features a superb staging of Puccini's Tosca by Italian opera producer Hugo de Ana. With a dream team cast of excellent singer-actors and conducted by Daniel Oren, this recording perfectly captures the experience of an open-air opera performance on a Verona summer evening.
The sound is also excellent on the DVD, much better, I suspect, than if you were in the audience, even though the singers and orchestra must all be amplified. The Arena di Verona Orchestra on disc sounds very fine playing some of Puccini's best-known music under the leadership of Daniel Oren. As the other reviewers have pointed out, the singing is also quite good. I have never heard Marcello -lvarez sound better; he is in great voice on this particular night, and his "E lucevan le stelle" now has to be one of the best recorded anywhere. His acting is still a little wooden and he has lost a bit of his once-svelte figure, but his singing as Cavaradossi is a highlight of the set. Ruggero Raimondi is a perennial favorite as Scarpia, one of his signature roles; I believe this is his third time doing it on DVD alone. He still can produce plenty of nastiness as the villain of the piece and his singing still holds up quite well. I am a little less happy with the Tosca, Fiorenza Cedolins. She acts better than she sings...
Run Time: 119 min.
Picture Format: NTSC, 16:9, Color
Sound Format(s): LPCM Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1
Subtitles: English, German, French, Spanish, Italian
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Works DetailsPuccini, Giacomo : Tosca
- Performers: Ruggero Raimondi (Baritone); Fiorenza Cedolins (Soprano); Marcelo Alvarez (Tenor)
- Conductor: Daniel Oren
- Ensemble: Verona Teatro Arena Chorus
- Period Time: Post Romantic
- Form: Opera/Operetta
- Written: 1900