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Dawn Fatale
Parterre Box, June 2014

There is much to admire in this riveting production. The Amina, Anna Durlovski gave a formidable performance. She sings with great facility and easily produced interpolated high notes. Moreover, she displayed an impressive palette of vocal colorations of emotional shadings. Her Elvino, Luciano Botelho sang with great sweetness and tenderness…He acted with great conviction…Gabriele Ferro conducted with style and evident affection for the work…

Anna Viebrock provided the impressively detailed sets and costumes; they make a considerable contribution to establishing the narrative and mood of the staging. Special kudos should go to the TV Director, Marcus Richardt who provided a judicious balance of close-ups of pertinent details with fuller views of the stage proceedings. Many of those close-ups were of the remarkable chorus. Not only do they sing with style and nuance, but they also act with conviction and attention to detail. All in all, highly recommended. © 2014 Parterre Box Read complete review

George Hall
BBC Music Magazine, May 2014

BELLINI, V.: Sonnambula (La) (Staatsoper Stuttgart, 2013) (NTSC) 2059338
BELLINI, V.: Sonnambula (La) (Staatsoper Stuttgart, 2013) (Blu-ray, Full-HD) 2059334

Bellini’s opera semiseria is sometimes written off as simple-minded, its tale of a village girl who sleepwalks into a compromising situation and is then rejected by her betrothed and the other villagers considered naive and eve silly. But when taken seriously, as it is in this 2013 Stuttgart production, it reveals depths that are at least partially deliberately hidden. © 2014 BBC Music Magazine

Mike Ashman
Gramophone, May 2014

BELLINI, V.: Sonnambula (La) (Staatsoper Stuttgart, 2013) (NTSC) 2059338
BELLINI, V.: Sonnambula (La) (Staatsoper Stuttgart, 2013) (Blu-ray, Full-HD) 2059334

Musically we are again in the safe but far from unexciting hands of Gabriele Ferro. Also far from unexciting is the thrilling singing of Macedonian soprano Ana Durlovski...a terrific natural actress in conveying Amina’s emotional plight. She is especially well partnered by Enzo Capuano’s Count and Catriona Smith’s well-contrasted, blowsy Lisa. Luciano Botelho’s Elvino certainly sings well enough but this is just not a production which focuses on his relationship with Amina. You could argue that’s a distortion but the opera’s drama and music can certainly take it. © 2014 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

John Sheppard
MusicWeb International, April 2014

Ana Durlovski as Amina has the necessary flexibility and ability to make the most of Bellini’s long and lovely phrases… Luciano Botelho has the necessary high notes and flexibility for Elvino as well as the ability to sweeten his tone when required, and Enzo Capuana is a sympathetic Count Rodolfo. Catriona Smith makes much of the part of Lisa and Helene Schneiderman of Teresa. Gabriele Ferro leads an idiomatic and lively performance, not afraid to relax when required. All in all and despite some very occasional poor ensemble, inevitable in live performance, this is musically a thoroughly distinguished performance.

It is this and the dramatic wholeness with the sense of an ensemble at work that is so appealing about this recording. La Sonnambula can seem to lack dramatic interest or coherence but not here. This excellent disc, well filmed and recorded, even if the voices at times seem somewhat distant, demonstrates that what can appear to be a vehicle for star singers responds even more to being taken seriously as music and as drama. © 2014 MusicWeb International Read complete review

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1:46:28 AM, 14 October 2015
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