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James A. Altena
Fanfare, November 2012

LEHAR, F.: Graf von Luxemburg (Der) (Studio Production, 1972) (NTSC) 101626
LEHAR, F.: Zigeunerliebe (Studio Production, 1974) (NTSC) 101599

The situation with Zigeunerliebe is much more straightforward, as this is the only version available on DVD. Fortunately, this 1974 film version, directed by Václav Kašlik, is stupendous. The filming is absolutely gorgeous, with marvelous natural scenery, wild horseback rides, and magnificent period costumes and sets. The extended act II dream sequence, an extremely tricky thing to realize, is wonderfully conceptualized and executed here. The singing is equally glorious. Janet Perry dispatches the role of Zorika, with its dauntingly high tessitura and need to override a full orchestra, beautifully and without any strain or wobble. Ion Buzea is an ardent Józsi with a ringing, secure tenor voice, while Adolf Dallapozza offers a beatifully lyrical and touching Jonel. In the supporting roles, Collete Lorand is a fine Ilona, while Heinz Friedrich and longtime operetta veteran Kurt Großkurth do colorful turns as Peter Dragotin and Mihály. Heinz Wallberg and his Bavarian forces offer stellar choral and instrumental support and are provided with fine recorded sound.

In short, this is the version of choice for Zigeunerliebe in any medium and has my glowing recommendation. © 2012 Fanfare Read complete review





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