Classical Music Home

Welcome to Naxos Records

Email Password  
Not a subscriber yet?  
Keyword Search
 in   
 Classical Music Home > Naxos Album Reviews

Album Reviews



 
See latest reviews of other albums...

Paul J. Pelkonen
Superconductor, June 2015

Mr. Finley conveys the suffering and anguish of Amfortas effectively, moving with reluctance and putting agony into each note he sings.

Nothing can prepare one for the Good Friday Scene, where Antonio Pappano’s lucid orchestral textures accompany a miracle that is not in the libretto: the restoration of Parsifal’s sight thanks to the ministrations of Kundry. The music builds here with the details that ornament Mr. Pape’s vocal line with radiance and clarity of tone. © 2015 Superconductor Read complete review



Adriel
Parterre Box, April 2015

Finley continues to display impressive Wagner chops following his 2011 Hans Sachs at Glyndeboune, turning in a passionate, remarkably tender portrayal of Amfortas.

The orchestra plays authoritatively, and the chorus is equal to the task… © 2015 Parterre Box Read complete review



Ralph V. Lucano
American Record Guide, March 2015

Finley shapes his monologues with a lieder singer’s care, and his voice sounds wonderful. Pappano…paces the music well and never slights either its grandeur or its extraordinary beauty. © 2015 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



Janos Gardonyi
The WholeNote, February 2015

…this is indeed a glorious Parsifal thanks mainly to Antonio Pappano’s insightful, deeply felt and thoroughly understood musical direction.

The biggest surprise and a great sensation, however, is Canadian baritone Gerald Finley creating a lasting impression as a newcomer to the incredibly difficult central role of the suffering sinner, Amfortas. © 2015 The WholeNote Read complete review



Peter Quantrill
Gramophone, February 2015

WAGNER, R.: Parsifal (Royal Opera House, 2014) (NTSC) OA1158D
WAGNER, R.: Parsifal (Royal Opera House, 2014) (Blu-ray, HD) OABD7159D

Parsifal may be the most diatonically secure opera of Wagner’s maturity but it’s also his most carefully fragmented, whereas Antonio Pappano supports his singers with a pliant, lyrical flow at generally broad tempi: whether the expression is heavy or exposed, the strings bring a voluptuous bloom to Wagner’s plangent harmonies. © 2015 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone



Simon Thompson
MusicWeb International, January 2015

The two principal basses anchor the musical side of the production triumphantly. Gerald Finley acts and sings very movingly to underline the agony of Amfortas—he effectively evokes the king’s isolation and psychological horror. His Wehvolles Erbe in the first act is full of self-accusation, and the climax over Titurel’s body in the third act is sensational. Next to him, René Pape’s Gurnemanz combines beauty with quiet majesty. He sings the narrations grippingly, and every nuance of character is brought to the fore as he questions Parsifal after the shooting of the swan. He is also very moving in the Good Friday music, and sings the anointing with majestic brilliance, refusing to shirk any of its power.

The sound made by the orchestra is wonderful; shimmering, quivering and intense. Pappano ekes every ounce of beauty out of them, and he manages the set-piece climaxes very well, most notably the Act One Grail Temple choruses and the anointing scene of Act Three. The sound and picture are good…and the surround sound option is effectively caught. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review




Michael Johnson
ConcertoNet.com, December 2014

WAGNER, R.: Parsifal (Royal Opera House, 2014) (NTSC) OA1158D
WAGNER, R.: Parsifal (Royal Opera House, 2014) (Blu-ray, HD) OABD7159D

Musically and vocally this is a very fine performance.

Simon O’Neill…has a sweet directness in his handling of the role…[and] his bright voice has a youthful freshness to it—no leathery baritenor here.

Angela Denoke superbly maintains focus both musically and dramatically…she (like all the cast) keeps to the musical line so firmly and lovingly established by Antonio Pappano. Gerald Finley maintains a steady (and very expressive) vocal line while avoiding the howling that many singers portraying Amfortas resort to. Willard W. White vividly establishes the villainy of Klingsor…[and] René Pape, as one would expect, is the ideal Gurnemanz…Orchestra and chorus are fully up to Covent Garden’s high standards. © 2014 ConcertoNet.com Read complete review





Naxos Records, a member of the Naxos Music Group