Rossini: Otello (DVD) – Cecilia Bartoli, John Osborn

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Rossini: Otello (DVD) – Cecilia Bartoli, John Osborn

Composer: Gioachino Rossini
Artists: Cecilia Bartoli, John Osborn, Edgardo Rocha, Javier Camarena, Liliana Nikiteanu, Peter Kálmán, Nicola Pamio, Zurich Opera Supplementary Chorus, Orchestra La Scintilla of the Zurich Opera
Conductor: Muhai Tang
Directors: Moshe Leiser, Patrice Caurier
Format: NTSC
Language: Italian
Subtitles: Italian, English, French, German, Chinese, Korean, Japanese
Region: All Regions
Number of Discs: 1
Studio: Decca
DVD Release Date: May 6, 2014
Run Time: 156 minutes

Cecilia Bartoli makes her long-anticipated debut in the role of Desdemona in Moshe Leiser and Patrice Caurier’s new production of Rossini’s Otello for the Zurich Opera House.

Rossini’s unusual scoring of the drama calls for three tenor supporting roles – here sung to universal acclaim by long-standing Bartoli collaborators John Osborn and Javier Camarena, and newcomer Edgardo Rocha.

“Ms. Bartoli…displayed…the dazzling strengths that have characterized her work since the beginning. It is obvious that she has plotted out every musical and dramatic moment: every subtle diminuendo, every gesture. But her charm — those twinkling eyes, those powerful low notes — is such that the effect doesn’t feel overly calculated.” – The New York Times

“Zurich Opera stared down the mighty challenge posed by Rossini’s Otello…and knocked it out of the ballpark.” – Operatoday.com



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History

Otello

Giuseppe Verdi’s four-act opera, Otello, based on Shakespeare’s Othello, is set in the late 15th century on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus.

Otello is the 25th title of the 26 operas, which were composed by Verdi. He was 74 years old when he wrote it (1884-1886).

The story adheres closely to the Bard’s play. Otello, an African Moor and general in the Venetian army returns home to a plot of deception created by his subordinate, Iago, which goes awry and leads Otello into a fit of rage resulting in his murder of Desdemoda, his beloved wife. Otello falls on his dagger in despair at what he has done in the final scene, which is an oft-studied subject in literature, opera and psychology.

Before she dies in Act 3, Desdemona sings two well-known arias, “Willow Song” and “Ave Maria.”

In the Met’s 2018/2019 season, modern architectural sets were used to create a contemporary feeling, appropriate for a story, which rings as true today as it did in the 15th century.

World premiere in Teatro alla Scala, Milan, February 5, 1887

 

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