In a field already crowded with excellent Blu-ray Discs of Verdi's biggest hit, La Traviata, this new one comes in near the bottom. Sub-par singing of its lead soprano is further disadvantaged by boxy and occasionally distorted sound.
Macbeth, a middle Verdi opera that has finally received its due, does not get a convincing performance in this Teatro Regio di Parma performance. With below the mark vocalism from its principals, even Verdi veteran conductor Bartoletti cannot bail out these proceedings.
Unconventionally staged in the Sydney harbor by Francesca Zambello, this updated version of La Traviata produces some wondrous sights and sounds. Soprano Emma Matthews carries the day and viewers get a real sensory feast from this 2012 production.
Approaching the 200th anniversary of Giuseppe Verdi's birth, a number of opera companies are gearing up with new productions of some of the master's less staged works. Un Giorno di Regno qualifies for this category while the current Teatro Regio di Parma performance unearths a minor masterpiece.
Falstaff, Verdi's final masterpiece, receives a strong production from the Zurich Opera. A quicksilver vocal cast, led by a natural fat knight, Ambrogio Maestri, makes Shakespeare's Windsor Forest, a comic neighborhood worth visiting.
With the world deforested and people dying from a deadly disease caused by synthetic oxygen, a quiet tunnel worker receives a message from the future and must save humanity in this uneven but watchable dystopian Aussie indie sci-fi thriller.