Classical Music Home

Welcome to Naxos Records

Keyword Search
 Classical Music Home > Naxos Album Reviews

Album Reviews

See latest reviews of other albums...

Elliot Fisch
American Record Guide, November 2017

PROKOFIEV, S.: Romeo and Juliet [Ballet] (San Francisco Ballet, 2015) (NTSC) 739008
PROKOFIEV, S.: Romeo and Juliet [Ballet] (San Francisco Ballet, 2015) (Blu-ray, HD) 739104

This San Francisco ballet performance recorded on May 7, 2015 is a new production with new choreography by the Ballet’s artistic director Helgi Tomasson. Tomasson’s choreography is very impressive and blends well with Prokofieff ’s wonderful score. The disputes between the Montagues and Capulets is clearly presented, the masquerade ball is nicely staged, and the swordfights are very impressive (a video extra explains the training the ballet dancers go through to do this effectively and not get hurt). The choreography is often very beautiful, and the dancers are also good actors. The balcony scene, as in most performances, is the most impressive sequence. Maria Kochetkova is a delight from her opening dance through to the tomb scene. Davit Karapetyan is also impressive. Pascal Molat as Mercutio steals every scene when he is on stage. The ballet ensemble is excellent. The tomb scene has a wonderful finale as Juliet dies in Romeo’s arms. The orchestra plays the score very well, the 16:9 Blu-ray video is super sharp, the camerawork captures the movements effectively, and the soundtracks are state of the art. © 2017 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Chris Morgan
Scene Magazine, August 2017

Romeo and Juliet is a classic story that’s been told many different ways over the years. Sergei Prokofiev’s ballet is one of the best known adaptations, and after its premiere in 1938, the production went on to become one of the 20th century’s most popular versions of the drama. …The lead roles of Romeo and Juliet—performed by Maria Kochetkova and Davit Karapetyan, respectively—are true to character, employing dance to convey traits only suggested by the play.  …As Romeo, the 30-something Karapetyan is all grace and gravitas, a powerful dancer who impresses with his physicality and robust stage presence. © 2017 Scene Magazine Read complete review

Phil Muse
Audio Video Club of Atlanta, July 2017

The San Francisco Ballet puts on a handsome staging of Sergei Prokofiev’s enduring classic Romeo and Juliet. Recorded live on May 7, 2015 at the San Francisco War Memorial Opera House, it stars Maria Kochetkova (Juliet) and Davit Karapetyan (Romeo) as Shakespeare’s lovers, with Pascal Molat (Mercutio), Joseph Walsh (Benvolio), and Luke Ingham (Tybalt). These dancers are wonderful. Karapetyan is manly in his bearing and athleticism, with a range of emotional sensitivity required by the character. Kochetkova’s Juliet is beguiling. Her movements are deceptively easy, her leaps inspiring. In the Garden Scene in her pas de deux with Karapetyan, their movements together have the effortless feeling of slowly drifting clouds (which, of course, is the result of countless hours of painstaking rehearsal). Molat’s Mercutio is endowed with a seemingly endess bag of really funny comic business, whether flirting with the street harlots or baiting Ingham’s very menacing Tybalt. Walsh, as Benvolio, has some fine moments in a trio with his companions as they prepare to set out on a lark to crash the fete at the Capulets, an escapade that helps seal Romeo’s fate. © 2017 Audio Video Club of Atlanta Read complete review, May 2017

The focus here is largely on the troupe’s founder, artistic director and principal choreographer, Helgi Tómasson: listeners and viewers must appreciate her handling of the story and the dancing in order to enjoy the recording—the fine conducting by Martin West and good (if not exceptional) orchestral playing are not enough. …Kochetkova and Karapetyan dance well together, although they act together less well—this is, after all, Shakespeare’s story of young and doomed love, and body language and facial expressiveness count for a great deal, beyond the requirements of ballet movements. © 2017 Read complete review

Naxos Records, a member of the Naxos Music Group