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Peter J. Rabinowitz
Fanfare, July 2012

STRAUSS, R.: Salome (Baden-Baden, 2011) (NTSC) 101593
STRAUSS, R.: Salome (Baden-Baden, 2011) (Blu-ray, Full-HD) 108037

Nikolaus Lehnhoff’s updated staging of Salome is intelligent, thoughtful, and provocative…Lehnhoff choreographs the singers around Hans-Martin Scholder’s slightly off-kilter stage well, and Duane Schuler’s lighting is consistently excellent.

…in vocal terms, the performance is in reasonably good hands. Angela Denoke has tremendous vocal reserves, and sings evocatively throughout. She may be too much of a spoiled little girl at the beginning… but she grows as the opera continues, and she’s poignant in the final scene, creating an intense sympathy that transcends, as it should, the shock value of the transgressive kiss (quite bloody and quite realistic here). No hysterics here: rather, a deliciously condescending venom that makes her political power easy to understand. Kim Begley is an excellent Herod…Alan Held…sings with authoritative sonority.

…Stefan Soltesz draws out plenty of evocative color from the quieter sections…Good camerawork, on the whole; good video and sound quality, too, especially on Blu-ray, which as usual gives greater clarity to the objects in the distance.

…it’s certainly well worth experiencing. © 2012 Fanfare Read complete review

Robert Cummings
Classical Net, April 2012

Dramatically, both sopranos [Angela Denoke and Kim Begley] dominate the proceedings on stage, and both sing well…

Denoke imparts a more youthful demeanor to Salome than many other sopranos who tackle the role. That’s certainly one of her greatest strengths here. With her slim figure, short blonde hair and physical agility she comes across as a quite believable Salome. Overall, Denoke is convincing in the role then, and the rest of the cast is dramatically and vocally quite strong.

…the atmosphere on stage is almost otherworldly in its mixture of decay and decadence, of Biblical characters and modern lust. Among the more effective touches in this production is the scene in which Salome sings and makes love to the severed head of Jochanan…

Stefan Soltesz paces the opera well and draws fine playing from the orchestra. The sound is vivid and the camera work excellent…Lehnhoff’s touches make this Blu-ray a worthy contender. © 2012 Classical Net Read complete review

Kevin Filipski
The Flip Side, February 2012

Angela Denoke…plays the teenage temptress with such a fiery single-mindedness that the finale—Salome singing to John the Baptist’s severed head—creeps us out more than usual. The fine-tuned orchestra is led by conductor Stefan Soltesz; Nikolaus Lehnhoff’s appropriately garish production certainly fits the story. The Blu-ray image is good; the music is a blast in surround sound. © 2012 The Flip Side Read complete review

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