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As so often, Puccini is merciless to his heroine, destroying her in music of such accomplishment that we must weep while knowing he has not played fair. The cast is notably expert, and the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra under Edo de Waart gives a strong yet tender account of Puccini's cunning score. As stage director, responsible also for the lighting and sets, Robert Wilson has produced, whether by design or constraint, a minimalist version of the opera. In manner, if not in matter, this Madama Butterfly is rigidly puritanical.

Cheryl Barker as Butterfly, at the end of Act 2. DVD screenshot © 2003 NPS
Cheryl Barker as Butterfly, at the end of Act 2. DVD screenshot © 2003 NPS


Copyright © 5 April 2006 Robert Anderson, Cairo, Egypt


Madama Butterfly

OA 0936 D 2xDVD9 PAL 16/9 anamorphic LPCM Stereo, dts digital surround NEW RELEASE 169' 2003 NPS, 2005 Opus Arte

Cheryl Barker, Cio-Cio San; Martin Thompson, Pinkerton; Catherine Keen, Suzuki; Richard Stilwell, Sharpless; Anneleen Bijnen, Kate Pinkerton; Peter Blanchet, Goro; Roger Smeets, Prince Yamadori; Andrzej Saciuk, Lo zio Bonzo; Harry Teeuwen, Yakusidé; Bart Driessen, Commissioner; John van Halteren, official registrar; Hiroko Mogaki, Butterfly's mother; Janine Scheepers, Butterfly's aunt; Vesna Miletic, Butterfly's cousin; Marnix van der Moezel, Sorrow; Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra; Chorus of De Nederlandse Opera; Edo de Waart, musical director; Boudewijn Jansen, chorus master; Robert Wilson, stage director, sets, lighting; Frida Parmeggiani, costumes; Misjel Vermeiren, TV director; Frank van Praag, TV executive producer; Henk van der Meulen, commissioning editor; Ferenc van Damme, DVD producer; Hans Petri, DVD executive producer

Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924): Madama Butterfly (Japanese tragedy in three parts, 1904, with libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa, based on the play 'Madame Butterfly' by David Belasco, after a story by John Luther Long)




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