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DVD Spotlight

Gripping Throughout

Donizetti's
'Lucrezia Borgia' -
recommended by
GERALD FENECH

'Dimitra Theodossiou's Lucrezia rivals that of many of her illustrious predecessors ...'

Donizetti: Lucrezia Borgia. © 2009 Naxos Rights International Ltd

Inspired by Victor Hugo's torrid play, Donizetti's Lucrezia Borgia is considered one of the great masterpieces of Italian bel canto, and although the main elements of the story are retained, librettist Felice Romani omitted many of the original excesses, thus spurring the composer to write some of his most memorable music.

Watch and listen -- Or via: mesciamo! (Act I)
(chapter 25, 80:26-81:50) © 2009 Naxos Rights International Ltd

The opera has many high points, not least the stirring conclusions to both acts, so the singers must not only excel in their art, but must be good actors as well. The cast in this dramatic recording perform magnificently, and their commitment to the score is compelling from beginning to end.

Dimitra Theodossiou's Lucrezia rivals that of many of her illustrious predecessors and her larger than life performance almost convinces you that she is the hero rather than the villain. Roberto De Biasio, Enrico Giuseppe Iori and Nidia Palacios also rise superbly to the occasion, and their unrelenting passion for Donizetti's music is gripping throughout.

Cristina Aceti's sumptuous costumes and Angelo Sala's superb set design also contribute immeasurably to the success of this production. Francesco Bellotto directs with an enthusiastic vigour that keeps everyone involved while Tiziano Severini's knowledge of the piece keeps the action moving briskly yet effectively: an issue which should delight opera buffs in glorious sound and feisty picture quality.

Watch and listen -- Era desso il figlio mio (Act II)
(chapter 39, 131:01-132:10) © 2009 Naxos Rights International Ltd

Copyright © 15 June 2009 Gerald Fenech,
Gzira, Malta

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DVD INFORMATION: DONIZETTI: LUCREZIA BORGIA

VICTOR HUGO

GAETANO DONIZETTI

BEL CANTO

FELICE ROMANI

NAXOS

ITALY

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