RACHMANINFF: Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor, Oop. 30. Étude-Tableau in A minor, Op. 39 No. 2. Vocalise, Op. 34 No. 14. Symphony No. 3 in A minor, Op 44.
Denis Natsuev, piano. Lucerne Festival Orchestra / Riccardo Chailly, cond.

DVORAK: Ruualka
Sally Matthews (Rusalka). Evan Leroy Johnson (Prince). Alexander Roslavts (Vodnik). Patricia Bardon (Jezibaba). Golin Gubson (Gamekeeper). Glyndebourne Chorus. London Philharmonic Orchestra / Robin Ticciati, cond.
OPUS ARTE DVD TT: 153 mi. + 8 min. extras

BETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No. 4 in G, Op. 58. BRUCKNETR: Symphony No 7 in E
Emanuel Ax, piano. Vuenna Philharmonic Orchestra/ Bernard Haitink, cond.
OPUS ARTE DVD TT: 116 min.

In 1982 Riccardo Chailly conduced Rachmaninoff's Concerto No. 3 with Martha Argerich and the Berlin Radio Symphony, a brilliant performance, one of the finest ever Many years ago I attended a performance in New jersey of Chailly and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra on tour featuring this concerto with amazing Arcadi Volodos. On this new DVD Chailly conducts this music with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra of which he has been Music Director since 2016, with the stunning Denis Matsuev as soloist. It is a superb performance in every way. There are several Rachmaninoff videos of Matsuev on You Tube. This site praised Matsuev's performance of Concerto No. 3 with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra (REVIEW). As an encore, Matsuev chose the gentle A minor Etude-Tableaux. The concert concludes with more Rachmaninoff, the orchestral version of Vocalise and the rarely perfored Symphony No. 3. This DVD has excellent video, and the director makes sure we observe the countess orchestral solo passages. However, audio is adequate but disappointing. There is little brilliance to orchestral sound, and dynamic range is restricted. Still this is a worthy addition to the catalog. And if Rachmaninoff Three is a favorite, check out the remarkable recent CD issue with Yuja Wang and Gustavo Dudamel (REVIEW).

Dvorak's fairy tale opera Rusalka has had a difficult time on DVD. Renée Fleming's magnificent performance from Paris is marred by production mannerisims (REVIEW). The La Monniae production has been ill-advisedly modernuzed by director Stefan Herheim which destroys the fairy tale conceot of the work. This is unfortunate, as the singing is excellent (REVIEW). This new version from the Glyndebourne Festival August 2019 was designed by Rae Smiuth and directed by Kelly Still. It has much to offe visually with many appropriate magical effects. The cast is strong although Sally Matthews is not an ideal Rusalka. The opera's biggest number, the Song to the Moon, cannt work its magic in this performance. Visually this oroduction is quite stunning. Video and audio are excellent. This is an interesting addition to the video catalog.

The 2019 Salzburg Festival featured a concert by the Vienna Philharmonic conducted by Bernard Haitink with pianist Emanuel Ax as soloist. It was a memorable concert , the highest standards of the musical world performed by two master musicians who had collaborated often in the past. These re majestic performance of Beethoven's Concerto No. 4. And the Dutch conductor, who has made numerous recordings of Bruckner, already has made three of Symphony No. 7. Now we have the opportunity of watching him lead this music. The Vienna Philharmonic is at its best. Excellent video, and the multi-track audio is exemplary. A fine issue in every way.

R.E.B. (September 2020)