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DVD Spotlight

Dramatic Truth

Giuseppe Verdi's
'Don Carlo' -
reviewed by
ROBERT HUGILL

'... a strong candidate for the library shelves.'

Giuseppe Verdi: Don Carlo. © 2004 NPS, 2005 Opus Arte

For anyone familiar with the five act version of Verdi's Don Carlo, the four act version comes as something of a shock. When he shortened the opera, Verdi dropped the whole of the first act (the Fontainebleau scene). But for musical and dramatic consistency he had to transfer Carlo's solo and Carlo and Elisabetta's duet to the new first act; this was partly to establish Carlo and Elisabetta's relationship but also because the music is referred to in later acts. So you get a strange mixture of the first and second acts of the five act version, with the consequence of sacrificing speed for coherence of drama.

I have never really understood the attraction of this four act version...

Copyright © 29 July 2011 Robert Hugill,
London UK

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DVD INFORMATION: GIUSEPPE VERDI: DON CARLO

GIUSEPPE VERDI

DON CARLO

ROYAL CONCERTGEBOUW ORCHESTRA

ROLANDO VILLAZON

AMANDA ROOCROFT

AMSTERDAM

NETHERLANDS

ITALY

SPAIN

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Classical Music Programme Notes for concerts and recordings, by Malcolm Miller