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GLUCK: Iphigénie en Aulide & Tauride - von Otter, Minkowski, Les Musiciens (DVD)
GLUCK: Iphigénie en Aulide & Tauride - von Otter, Minkowski, Les Musiciens (DVD)

GLUCK: Iphigénie en Aulide & Tauride - von Otter, Minkowski, Les Musiciens (DVD)

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Véronique Gens (Iphigénie (Iphigénie en Aulide)); Mireille Delunsch (Iphigénie (Iphigénie en Tauride)); Salomé Haller (Diane); Nicolas Testé (Agamemnon); Anne Sofie von Otter (Clytemnestre); Laurent Alvaro (Thoas);

Two late and baleful tragedies by Euripides focus on the ill-starred daughter of the Greek King, Agamemnon. Will he sacrifice Iphigenia in order to secure fair winds for his voyage to Troy? In Aulis, the drama rages until she is spared. Having escaped to Tauris, Iphigenia finds herself compelled to kill her own brother before, once more, the fickle gods intervene. Gluck's operatic settings are very rarely staged in tandem, but Pierre Audi's production makes a darkly compelling case for their dramatic unity. All the lead performers here are experienced exponents of Gluck, and together they present a powerfully idiomatic experience.

"The other three Aulide principals are glorious, above all Véronique Gens, whose Iphigénie offers consistently perly tone and heart-rendering expressiveness. Her presentation of the character could hardly be more affecting... Von Otter's musicality and textual eloquence remain a lesson to all aspiring mezzo-sopranos. Seemingly born for Gluck roles is Frédérick Antoun (Achille)... Les Musiciens du Louvre under Minkowski provide flawless tone, a technical mastery unsurpassed anywhere today and maximum dramatic flair." (International Record Review)

"[von Otter] presents a deeply sympathetic character...[Gens's] Iphigenia is equally touching and just as beautifully sung...one or two [production] oddities are far outweighed by the intensity that Pierre Audi secures from his team. Minkowski conducts superbly." (Gramophone)

"in this performance every cross-hatched, baleful figure is crisp and clear...Veronique Gens's submissive, poised Iphigénie [en Aulide] becomes Mireille Delunsch's red-eyed, hysterical Iphigénie en Tauride...Both sopranos sing magnificently..." (BBC Music Magazine)