10th Anniversary DVD
Reviewed by Angela Davis
The tale of Tosca is, as a lot of Opera is, a tale of tragedy & passion and in this production, with Angela Gheorgiou as the tragic heroine, there’s even more passion given to the role which she fits exquisitely, as the beautiful, devout, dark haired dark eyed lover of Cavaradossi, sung in this production by Roberto Alagna.
I couldn’t fault the passion given to all the roles, sung to the utmost by all the performers backed by the orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. The sets were mostly minimalistic with deep shadows from which characters materialised in & out of which helped play up to the dark atmosphere.
One thing that I did find rather strange was that the sound level seemed to be a problem. I found I had to turn the level up very high to actually hear it.
I did find strange the cutaways at various points, to either the main performers, in what appeared to be either rehearsal or recording. Also to various films of places, which I presume was attempting to set the scene, e.g. showing a scene following a path towards what appeared to be a villa wall to set the scene for Cavaradossi’s villa, or the palace window where Tosca would meet with Scarpia and where Cavaradossi was taken to be tortured. I found this broke the spell of the drama rather than adding to it, and would have been happier to have just been left focused on the scene. However it was a truly enjoyable DVD to sit and watch and one I will keep revisiting for the joy of listening to the wonderful passionate voices and remarkable musicianship.
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