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The Turn of the Screw - Die Drehung der Schraube (1990)

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Richard Greager ...
Helen Field ...
Sam Linay ...
Machiko Obata ...
Menai Davies ...
Phyllis Cannan ...
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Lyrical and Chilling
27 August 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is one of my favorites of all Britten's works! Perhaps others think melody is scarce in this chamber opera, but I must disagree. There are so many beautiful passages and arias: The Prologue, "Why did I come?", Governess' aria from scene 4 (Act 1), "Dear God is there no end", "Malo, malo", the duet of Quint and Jessel, and Quint's stunning coloratura flourish "Miles".

There is one casting hiccup: Flora is played by a very adult Machiko Obata--she looks like Miles' mother (but she has a wonderful voice, so I got over it). There are slightly funny shots of Mr. Bedford's prissy podium style--in between all scenes and acts--with his pinky fingers in the air. Those are just minute grievances in an overall sterling performance.

The performers are in perfect voice: Helen Field, Richard Greager, Menai Davies, Phyllis Cannan, and Sam Linay (he succeeds in evoking both innocence and sinisterness).

It is a very worthy presentation of Britten's masterwork and it shouldn't be missed!


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