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David Patrick Stearns
Gramophone, February 2014

BRITTEN, B.: Rape of Lucretia (ENO, Aldeburgh Festival 2001) (NTSC) OA1123D
BRITTEN, B.: Rape of Lucretia (ENO, Aldeburgh Festival 2001) (Blu-ray, HD) OABD7135D

Lucretia director David McVicar typically finds clarity and purpose amid the opera’s convoluted story-telling. Lucretia’s scenes are bathed in a twilight blue with a wading pond creating ripples that beautifully match the score’s harp-writing.

Connolly’s performance sets a standard that’s perhaps as important to The Rape of Lucretia as Jon Vickers was to Peter Grimes. Daniel makes every note count in this ultra-spare score. © 2014 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone



Nicholas Sheffo
Fulvue Drive-in, January 2014

…Britten is one of the later opera composing greats and we have been receiving a series of his works on Blu-ray, with this one proving once again he is one of the most important and prolific of creators of works in the art form in recent times…it is highly recommended… © 2014 Fulvue Drive-in Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, November 2013

Completing Opus Arte’s celebration of Benjamin Britten’s centenary, comes this 2001 film made of English National Opera’s staging of The Rape of Lucretia. Presented in the Snape Maltings Concert Hall, Aldeburgh, it was directed by David McVicar, his simple staging taking us into the opera without intervention, costumes alone setting out the era. With every part so tellingly characterised, it is also vocally outstanding, Sarah Connolly’s forceful rejection of Prince Tarquinius, as she tries to stop his rape, is a chilling moment, equalled by the rejection of herself at the opera’s conclusion. In physique and appearance Christopher Maltman is an ideal warrior Prince, his voice in superb form, and matching the sheer weight of Clive Bayley as Lucretia’s husband, Collatinus. Yet it is John Mark Ainsley and Orla Boylan, as the storytellers, who rather upstage all in the actual story, their distress at the events as the opera infolds adding greatly to the impact. Paul Daniel is the conductor…he proves to be one of today’s finest exponents of Britten’s music, the chamber orchestra from English National Opera responding with the most detailed backdrop. A great deal of the film’s success comes from the unfussy filming for BBC television, an object lesson on how to capture opera. In every respect this is an outstanding release that I fervently urge you to see. © 2013 David’s Review Corner






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2:33:17 AM, 31 August 2014
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