Gun-Brit Barkmam (Brünnhilde). Daniel Brenna (siegfried). Shenyang
(Gunther). Eric Halfvareson (Hagen). Amanda Majeski (Gutrune). Michele
(Waltraute). Peter Kalman (Alberich). Eri Nakamura (Woglinde). Aurhella
Varak (Wellgunde). Hermine Hasselbock (Flosshilde). Bamberg Symphony
Chorus. Hong Kong Philharmonic Chorus. Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
/ Jap van Zweden, cond.
NAXOS BLU RAY AUDIO NBD0075 TT: 4:23:22
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Jeremy Irons, narrator. Matt Haimovitz, cellist. Lisa Delan, soprano.
Frederica Von Stade / Zheng Cao (mezzo-sopranos). Daniel Taylor (countertenor).
Sanford Sylvan (baritone). Mike Marshall / Caterina Lichtenberg (mandolins).
Children's Choir of St. Martin de Porres School.Cello Ensemble / Michael
PENTATONE SACD 5186731SACD TT: 67:01
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The dynamic Jap van Zweden concludes his Ring Cycle with this
outstanding performance of Götterdämmerung recorded live January 18 and
21, 2018 in the Hong Kong Cultural
Center Concert Hall. Like previous issues: Das Rheingold,Die Walküre and
Siegfried, the cast is sttong throughout and the Japanese orchestra
plays with security and tonal beauty. Those large outbursts of Wagnerian
sonority come over with thrilling effect. Of [particular interest are two
singers. The young American tenor Daniel Brenna
role of Siegfried to high praise with the Washington Opera and the
Vienna State Opera, also appearing in in operas of Berg, Janacek
Strauss. German soprano Gun-Brit Backmin in recent years has amazed audiences
with her performances as Sieglinde Isolde Elsa, Chrysothemis and many other
roles including contemporaryopera. She was a particular hit in
a concert performance of Salome with the Boston Symphony, part of which
can be seen on YouTube. An attractive woman, she has a remarkable stage
presence. This Hong Kong Brünnhilde was her first performance of the role;
her clear powerful voice seems ideal. This van Zweden Ring should be in
every Wagner collection.
Producers describe this as, "hanging, gentle spirits
from far-fflung worlds meet in the pulsing sphere of dreams and lullabies....a
musical storybook for children." It is based on an original tale
by best-selling children's fantasy writer Cornelia Funke The original
score is by Luna
Pearl Woolf, interspersed with songs by Irving Berlin, Lennon-McCarthy,
Jake Hegge, Eugene Humperdinck and Gordon Getty. The handsome package
includes appropriate images by the award-winning creative studio Mirada
that tell the story. Also included are a coloring
poster, stickers and cards for"sharing the magic".Performers
are excellent, and the multi-channel audio is clear. Complete texts are
provided. Chidden obviously will enjoy this.
R.E.B. (February 2019)