Classical Music Home

Welcome to Naxos Records

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

Album Reviews

See latest reviews of other albums...

Andrew Quint
Fanfare, November 2015

Angela Denoke is a compelling Kundry with impressive vocal command, and having the veteran Wagnerian Robert Lloyd cover the small part of Titurel is a nice touch. …entertaining and thought-provoking. © 2015 Fanfare Read complete review

Andrew Quint
Fanfare, May 2015

The audio quality…was excellent…even better. Especially in multichannel, the sound for the transformation scenes is richly immersive, highly reminiscent of the aural experience in the Bayreuth Festspielhaus.

I’ve never seen a Parsifal that left me feeling better at the end. It’s respectful of faith and the possibility of miracles, and upbeat regarding then potential for redemption on both a personal and societal level. …it’s looking like I’ll have another Parsifal on my Want List. © 2015 Fanfare Read complete review

Robert Cummings
Classical Net, February 2015

René Pape is simply excellent as Gurnemanz, both vocally and dramatically. Gerald Finley as Amfortas is perhaps on his level too: vocally he is excellent; dramatically he is even better than excellent. Simon O’Neill as Parsifal also turns in fine work. Angela Denoke has a strong stage presence and a good sense for drama…

Sir Antonio Pappano leads a reasonably strong performance from the pit. The orchestra and chorus perform admirably under his direction. © 2015 Classical Net 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

David Denton
David's Review Corner, January 2015

Another night, another opera and another producer wanting to show that he can reveal more about Wagner’s Parsifal by updating the action to the present time. Well you have a performance that could vie with the best on disc, Simon ONeill, probably today’s finest Parsifal, never sparing himself, particularly in the second act where Parsifal’s innocence of mind is put to the test. Equally we have one of the most elegant singers, René Pape, in fine form as Gurnemanz, while Gerald Finley is an outstanding Amfortes, though it must have been difficult to project his voice in the postures he has to assume. I am equally impressed with Angela Denoke who does not exaggerate the character of Kundrey, as we often hear both in the opera house and on disc. Then add a very persuasive performance of Klingsor from Willard White, and you have all of the major characters so well served. Yet it is in the orchestra pit that we have the final seal of approval with the most beautiful sounds obtained by the conductor, Antonio Pappano. His unhurried tempos give the music the space that it requires without ever sounding less than compelling. I am equally impressed by the Royal Opera chorus…[and] the sound is excellent… © 2015 David’s Review Corner

Michael Johnson, 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 Read complete review

Paul Corfield Godfrey
MusicWeb International, December 2014

The greatest strength of this performance…lies in its singers. The longest solo role in Parsifal is that of Gurnemanz and this is a role that René Pape might have been born to sing. Pape is rock-steady throughout…He points the text throughout with an exquisite sense of meaning and delicacy where required.

Graham Finley, with much less Wagnerian experience, is similarly balm to the ears as Amfortas. Here Finley shades the text with real understanding, and he also manages credibly to suggest the aging of the suffering Grail King between the first and last Acts. By his side Robert Lloyd as his father still has the firmness of projection that the role demands…

[Simon O’Neill’s]…singing is fully engaged and dramatically able to ride the storms that Pappano conjures up from the orchestra pit. His delivery of the climax of “Amfortas! Die Wunde!” is simply thrilling, both as a musical and as a dramatic experience.

Even more dramatically thrilling is Angela Denoke as Kundry. © 2014 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Naxos Records, a member of the Naxos Music Group