Paul Corfield Godfrey
, November 2013
Michael Hampe is…a model of taste and discretion in his direction in the basic but satisfactory sets (by Carlo Tommasi), never stepping outside the bounds of the scenario envisioned by the composer but bringing plenty of nice touches to its realisation.
The casting has not a single weak link…John del Carlo is a magnificent fat knight, brimming with self-confidence and showing a real sense of danger as well as fatuousness. As the merry wives, Teresa Ringholz and Delores Ziegler make a stunning pair of conspirators, striking plenty of sparks off each other and their husbands. Richard Croft displays plenty of bravura as Ford…Jake Gardner is equally good as Slender—here taking over the role of Page…The character of Betty combines elements of Nanetta and Mistress Quickly, and is given a lively performance by Darla Brooks. Carlos Feller is a nicely curmudgeonly Bardolfo.
The music comes through with real strength, even the influences of Mozart fully absorbed into the whole and packing a superb punch. The recorded sound…has plenty of body and the continuo is imaginatively realised…
…there are no other DVDs of Salieri’s Falstaff currently available; and this recording and performance give the score as good a performance as you are likely to hear in any medium, and in a thoroughly acceptable production. The score is very nearly as good as Mozart, too, well worth investigation. © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review