Not for everybody, but I found it bold, beautifully sung and entertaining
Rinaldo has always been one of my favourite Handel works with some of his most ravishing music. This production of Rinaldo is not going to please everyone, the staging and production values have a more bold and camp approach than the traditional, sumptuous approach, but there are touches to the staging that are distracting(the giant bobble-head) the production is entertaining especially in the avant-garde-like second act and doesn't look cheap. Plus I may be wrong but as much as I do love the opera, I do think that it is not an easy opera to play straight. Technically, with the sound, picture and video quality, this Rinaldo is excellent. Musically, the orchestra play beautifully and don't sound too swamped and while a little too brisk on occasions the conducting is assured and musical throughout. Of the singing, David Daniels' Rinaldo is magnificent, a clear and beautiful voice and a very deeply-felt interpretation. Deborah York is a lovely Almirena, but the best in support are the gusty, seductive Armida of Noemi Naddelmann and the sonorous Argante of Eglis Silins. Daniel Taylor's countertenor is beautiful to listen to, though his costume is perplexing. Less effective are Axel Kohler who is clearly taxed by the difficult role of Eustazio and David Walker's Geoffredo, whose singing is not very well-supported and it is a very unsubtle performance with Geoffredo coming across as too much of a coward. In conclusion, bold, entertaining and mostly beautifully sung, but not for all tastes. 7.5/10 Bethany Cox
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