Mozart’s sublime tragic comedy offers boundless scope for directors, and Kasper Holten has chosen it to follow his directorial debut of Eugene Onegin. He wanted to shift the emphasis from Don Giovanni’s sex life into a darker place, showing Giovanni’s womanizing as an attempt to stave off his own mortality. Each woman he seduces represents a life he could have had. Though it is a dark piece, Holten handles it with a light touch and works with a superb cast – Mariusz Kwiecień, one of the world’s leading Don Giovannis, Alex Esposito, a fresh, vigorous Leporello, and acclaimed French soprano Véronique Gens. Spectacular designs by Es Devlin (Les Troyens) make innovative use of projections by acclaimed video designer Luke Halls. Nicola Luisotti conducts.
Don Giovanni: Mariusz Kwiecień Leporello: Alex Esposito Commendatore: Alexander Tsymbalyuk Donna Elvira: Véronique Gens Don Ottavio: Antonio Poli Donna Anna: Malin Byström Zerlina: Elizabeth Watts Masetto: Dawid Kimberg
Royal Opera Chorus Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Conductor: Nicola Luisotti Music: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Director: Kasper Holten Set Design: Es Devlin Recorded live at the Royal Opera House, February 2014
Plus: Introduction; Don Giovanni's Women; Director's commentary; Cast gallery.
Picture: 16:9 Sound: 2.0 PCM + 5.1(5.0) DTS Format: NTSC Region code: 0 (worldwide) Running time: 187 mins Subtitles: EN/FR/DE/JA/KO
"Its virtues start with Es Devlin’s handsome set... and Anja Vang Kragh’s imaginative costuming, which locates the period around 1840. Within this frame, Holten directs meticulously: the staging has been rehearsed with exceptional thoughtfulness and attention to detail."The Daily Telegraph
"... in the Polish baritone Mariusz Kwiecien he’s [Kasper Holten] found the man for the job... the drama gains steadily in force thanks to the beauty of the singing, the charisma of Alex Esposito’s winningly clown-like Leporello, and the ingenious suggestiveness of Luke Halls’ video superimpositions on Es Devlin’s set."The Independent
"Kwiecien’s eloquently sung Giovanni heads a strong cast. Particularly impressive is Malin Byström’s Donna Anna... Véronique Gens offers a sympathetic Donna Elvira, impassioned rather than hysterical in her inability to give up on Giovanni... Nicola Luisotti draws sensuous playing from the ROH orchestra, he and Paul Wingfield generating daring and witty dissonances in their keyboard continuo."The Evening Standard