Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande (DVD) – Jacques Imbrailo, Michaela Selinger

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Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande (DVD) – Jacques Imbrailo, Michaela Selinger

Composer: Claude Debussy
Artists: Jacques Imbrailo, Michaela Selinger, Vincent Le Texier, Doris Soffel, Wolfgang Schöne, Dominik Eberle, Mateusz Kabala, Essener Philharmoniker, Opernchor des Aalto-Theaters
Conductor: Stefan Soltesz
Director: Nikolaus Lehnhoff
Format: NTSC
Language: French
Subtitles: French, German, English, Spanish, Italian, Korean
Region: All Regions
Number of Discs: 1
Studio: ArtHaus Musik
DVD Release Date: October 29, 2013
Run Time: 151 minutes

Staged in Essen’s Aalto Theatre, this pioneering work of early modern times was a landmark. The consummately precise staging by veteran stage director Nikolaus Lehnhoff has a cast to match its wondrous sounds. The characters seem to float through the scenes, bringing to the stage the unspeakable, the negation and extinction of their feelings, showing the people of this story in inescapable solitude. This production stars the young South African baritone Jacques Imbrailo as Pelléas and Michaela Selinger as Mélisande, as well as Vincent Le Texier and Doris Soffel.

“This exceptional production achieves...what actually can only be understood as magic.” (Die Welt)

“The actual sensation however is the classic, cold splendor coming from the stage setting and the character direction that allows only one kind of reaction: catharsis, heartache.” (Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung)

 



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History

Pelléas et Mélisande

Composed in 1895, Pelléas et Mélisande is the only opera Claude Debussy ever completed. It is considered a landmark in 20th-century music.

Performed in five acts, the story is about the love triangle between Prince Golaud, Mélisande, a mysterious young woman lost in a forest whom he marries and Golaud’s younger half-brother Pelléas, who has a passionate relationship with Mélisande. In the end this is a classic tale of love, betrayal and death.

Set in the mythical kingdom of Allemonde, the era is not indicated, but the ambience of the story is medieval, more suggestive than specific.

It premiered at the Opéra-Comique in Paris on April 30,1902, was performed at the Met in 2011 then returned almost a decade later in its 2018–19 season.

 

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