ClassicsOnline Home » BARTOK, B.: Bluebeard's Castle [Opera] (Alsop) > Review List

BARTOK, B.: Bluebeard's Castle [Opera] (Alsop)

Composer(s):Bartok, Bela
Period(s) 20th Century
Genre Classical Music
Category Opera
Catalogue 8.660928
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps

A modern version of the old European folk-tale about the cruel, blue-bearded prince and his many disappearing wives, Bartók's oper Bluebeard's Castle is a metaphor for the impossibility of complete love between a man and a woman. A vast orchestra, one of Bartók's largest, supports the vocal lines, moving deftly from moments of chamber-music-like delicacy to massive thunderheads of sound that underline the characters' inner agony. No scene is more vividly portrayed, though, or more memorable, than the moment when Judith opens the fifth door to behold a vista looking out over all Blubeard's domains. One of the most spine-tingling moments in twentieth-century opera, a violentlydissonant wave of sound transfomrs, in an instant, to a massive C major chord in the full



Review By Penguin Guide,January 2009

Marin Alsop has made a series of impressive recordings for Naxos, of which this is one of the finest yet, with gloriously rich sound, very well focused. The big climax when Judith opens the door on to Bluebeard’s vast kingdom is thrilling, a wonderfully weighty focus for the whole sequence of doors, a sequence which Alsop sustains masterfully. Gustáv Belácek has a Slavonic-sounding bass, firmly controlled, very apt for the role and well matched by the Judith of Andrea Meláth, an imaginative choice of soloist. A fine bargain alternative [to the EMI version].

Review By David Denton, Naxos,November 2007

Recorded shortly after Marin Alsop’s hugely acclaimed concert performance, her vivid picture of Duke Bluebeard’s gloomy death-ridden castle is captured in a recording of stunning quality and extreme dynamics. It was deemed incomprehensible and unperformable when Bartok submitted his first opera as an entry for a Budapest competition in 1911, and it had to wait eight years for its first performance. By then Europe was having to come terms with the Second Viennese School and was more prepared for a new era of composition. For Bartok, an intensely withdrawn man, that rejection proved so distressing that for some considerable time it caused a mental block in his creativity, and he was never again to write for the opera house. Today it finds many more performances in the



Affiliates  |  Classical Points  |  Press Room  |  About Us  |  Contact Us  |  Terms of Use  |  Privacy Policy

ClassicsOnline Newsletter Archive

Monthly Features on ClassicsOnline

Why choose ClassicsOnline?
ClassicsOnline is your source for classical music new releases, rare catalog, historical recordings and exclusive bargains. Our vast classical music catalog has over 1 Million tracks from more than 50,000 albums available in DRM-free MP3 (320kbps) and FLAC (lossless format). More than 500 new albums are added each month, all of which are carefully indexed, and searchable by Composer, Artist, Work and Label. Membership is free, and registration includes 5 free tracks for download. Get a free track every week and gain access to exclusive classical deals when you subscribe to our newsletter. ClassicsOnline was honored in 2010 as the Best Classical Download Site by the MIDEM Classical Awards Jury.

Some titles may not be available in all countries because of possible copyright or licensing restrictions.

Copyright © 2015 Naxos Digital Services Ltd. All rights reserved. – Your Classical Music Download Source
8:10:02 PM Tuesday, June 02, 2015  -211-
This site is now closed, but it has been replaced with our exciting new service ClassicsOnline HD•LL.   x
Continue to buy your downloads at our new store, which now offers all content in lossless CD quality  
formats, in addition to MP3, and thousands of high-definition titles. To learn more, click here.  
Note that previously registered customers may still login to view their accounts until further notice.