The Metropolitan Opera HD Live: Season 5, Episode 7

Gluck: Iphigénie en Tauride (26 Feb. 2011)

TV Episode  -  Music
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 11 users  
Reviews: 2 user

Iphigenie, banished daughter of Klytemnaestra, is now high priestess to Diana. Two strangers from Greece wash up on shore; when Iphigenie recognizes one as her brother, Orestes, she is ... See full summary »

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Title: Gluck: Iphigénie en Tauride (26 Feb 2011)

Gluck: Iphigénie en Tauride (26 Feb 2011) on IMDb 7.9/10

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Cast

Episode credited cast:
Susan Graham ...
...
Oreste
Paul Groves ...
Pylade
Gordon Hawkins ...
Thoas
Julie Boulianne ...
Diane
Lei Xu ...
First Priestess
Cecelia Hall ...
Second Priestess
David Won ...
Scythian Minister
Jacqueline Antaramian ...
Clytemnestre
Rob Besserer ...
Patrick Summers ...
Himself - Conductor
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Metropolitan Opera Ballet ...
Dancers
Diana Damrau ...
Herself - Comtesse Adèle from 'Le Comte Ory'
Natalie Dessay ...
Herself - Host
Joyce DiDonato ...
Herself - Isolier from 'Le Comte Ory'
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Storyline

Iphigenie, banished daughter of Klytemnaestra, is now high priestess to Diana. Two strangers from Greece wash up on shore; when Iphigenie recognizes one as her brother, Orestes, she is powerless to stop his execution. Cue the goddess Diana. Written by dnitzer

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Music

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Release Date:

26 February 2011 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Soundtracks

Spargi d'amaro pianto
(Mad scene from "Lucia di Lammermoor")
Music by Gaetano Donizetti
Performed by Natalie Dessay
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User Reviews

 
Spectacular production of Gluck's masterpiece
28 March 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

As much as I do love Orfeo Ed Euridice, I have been listening to Iphigenie En Tauride a lot recently and have been awe-struck by the gorgeous music and emotionally intense story. I found this Met production of Iphigenie En Tauride spectacular. My only complaints were the inactive staging of the Act 2 furies ballet/pantomime, I get that Oreste was meant to be tormented psychologically but I personally would have preferred if they were present on-stage rather than the singing being done off-stage, and the cut of Contemplez Ces Tristes Apprets which made the end of the second act a little too abrupt for my tastes.

Other than that, it is a highly atmospheric and beautiful-looking production, both in the costumes and sets. The lighting is also highly effective. The staging works a vast majority of the time, with my favourites being Iphigenie's dream, the haunting ghostly visitation from Clytemnestre and Diane descending from the rafters. I also felt the stillness worked, the production unfolds slowly, and considering the characters' states of mind, all the better for it.

Musically, it is superb. Gluck's music is both beautiful and emotional, and the Met once again do a fine job. Iphigenie En Tauride generally is much more authentic than the Met's productions of Orfeo Ed Euridice, which sometimes sounded musically swamped as well as having some questionable sets and choreography, and Rodelinda, a production that treats its opera with intelligence and respect but not feeling like Handel in the process. The orchestra are very balanced and don't sound too swamped(considering as I've said many times how huge the Met is), sending up an emotional storm at the start and giving O Toi, Qui Prolongeas Mes Jours a dance-like feel.

Patrick Summers does a very impressive reading as conductor, every bit as good as his conducting for the Capriccio segment of the Opening Night Gala and more subtle than his Madama Butterfly and Salome.

Susan Graham is a superb Iphigenie, still clear, firm and flexible despite her cold. The dance-like feel of O Toi... allows her to give the aria her usual delicacies and lovely stylistic and rhythmic touches. Her acting is outstanding, intense and moving. Vocally, this is not Placido Domingo at his best, apparently he also had a cold and it shows with some hoarseness here and there. That said, he does give a very brave performance, his trademark burnished sound is still evident even with the interference and like Graham he embodies his role of Oreste.

He and Graham have wonderful chemistry together, with Acts 3 and 4 intensifying until the drama was very edge-of-your-seat stuff. Of the support cast, Paul Groves as Plyade came off best, loved the lyrical tone of his singing. Overall, spectacular dramatically and atmosphere-wise production of Gluck's masterpiece. 9/10 Bethany Cox


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