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Richard Sininger
American Record Guide, January 2018

DONIZETTI, G.: Roberto Devereux (Teatro Real, 2015) (NTSC) BAC130
DONIZETTI, G.: Roberto Devereux (Teatro Carlo Felice, 2016) (NTSC) DYN-37755

According to Wikipedia, Mariella Devia was born in 1948. Thus in 2018 she will be 70 years old. Yet, here she is, in recordings made in 2015 and 2016, acting and singing the difficult bel canto role of Queen Elizabeth in her late 60s. And she does it magnificently. The voice shows none of the problems usually associated with growing older. She has no wobbly vibrato; her top notes sound clear and secure; and the coloratura passages (of which there are many) sound clean and accurate. To hear this performance, one would guesss that she is in the prime of her career. The lady must have amazing technique. She fits the role perfectly, since the opera takes place late in Elizabeth’s reign. She is just about the perfect interpreter of this role. We are lucky that her performance is preserved on these two recordings.

In both performances, the other main characters are strong. Sonia Ganassi and Sylvia Tro Santafe both sing Sara beautifully. Ms Santafe looks young and beautiful, but both act the role very convincingly. As the title character, Gregory Kunde shows some strain in his first scene, but he then sounds like his normal self, which is very good. …Both baritones sing quite well, but Marco Caria has the edge here with a more powerful voice and stage presence. © 2018 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Lark Reviews, March 2017

We have seen more of this opera recently than probably any time in the last century and it is a worthy partner to the more familiar Anna Bolena. The production is very dark—you may need a large screen and a darkened room to pick up some of the detail—but the music is well focussed throughout and Francesco Lanzillotta keeps his forces moving swiftly. Mariella Devia is a tight-lipped monarch attempting to maintain emotional control while the world falls apart around her. All the solo parts are well taken and the chorus creep about as if terrified of what might happen next. © 2017 Lark Reviews

Richard Lawrence
Gramophone, March 2017

DONIZETTI, G.: Roberto Devereux [Opera] (Ganassi, S. Pop, Mansoo Kim, Genoa Carlo Felice Theater Chorus and Orchestra, Lanzillotta) CDS7755.02
DONIZETTI, G.: Roberto Devereux (Teatro Carlo Felice, 2016) (NTSC) DYN-37755
DONIZETTI, G.: Roberto Devereux (Teatro Carlo Felice, 2016) (Blu-ray, HD) DYN-57755

The ladies are superb. The opera begins with Sonia Ganassi as Sara, lyrically despairing in ‘All’aflitto’; later she is touchingly vulnerable when explaining to a furious Roberto how she was forced into marriage. And Mariella Devia is a miracle. Nearly 68 when this production was staged, she was the same age as the queen she was portraying. Imperious at the outset, grey-haired and witch-like at the end as she renounces the throne in favour of James VI of Scotland—an even wilder departure from history—Devia’s Elizabeth is mesmerisingly well done. The chorus and orchestra under Francesco Lanzillotta are good. © 2017 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Raymond Walker
MusicWeb International, January 2017

This production by Alfonso Antoniozzi concentrates on creating expressive characters and is neatly framed.

The orchestra is excellent under Lanzillotta’s direction and an ideal balance between singers and orchestra is provided.

This is a worthy DVD for consideration as both performance and technicalities are good. © 2017 MusicWeb International Read complete review

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