Maria Callas is one of Opera's immortal stars. At the peak of her career, her international fame rivaled that achieved by Caruso or Chaliapin, and the continuing dominance of her recordings is a testament to her talent. Like few Opera stars before or since, Callas lived each role, riveting all who saw her with absolutely mesmerizing sympathy for her characters. Every inflection is a carefully inspired dramatic act made surprisingly real. She was integral in reviving the popularity of Italian opera, though she did not limit herself to the form, and remains an icon to Verdi fans around the world.
Maria Callas Concert Films
Life and Art
Runtime: 1 hr 15 minMaria Callas died on 16th September 1977 at the age of 53. She had been, without doubt, the 20th century's greatest soprano, but was equally famous for events in her private life, her reclusive later years and for the silence she imposed on herself. As well as her stunning musical performances, her reputation depended on the drama she invested in her roles, revealing to the public the true nature of characters such as Tosca, Norma, Médée or Violetta in La traviata. This film reveals her character as well as celebrating her vocal art and her dramatic talents. It shows her as a woman and as a diva, constantly torn between her personal aspirations and her artistic ambitions.
Maria Callas Top Tracks
Symphony in Vienna
Runtime: 1 hr 16 minKicking off that phenomenally successful year, in January 2008, Sarah Brightman recorded and filmed Symphony -- Live in Vienna within the mystical walls of Stephansdome Cathedral in the heart of where classical music evolved -- Vienna, Austria. Renowned for its awe-inspiring Gothic architecture, the cathedral was the perfect setting to enter the magical world of Symphony lead by the voice of the beautiful, gothic-angel. This concert, Sarah Brightman Live in Vienna, includes repertoire from her album Symphony and some of her most popular songs ("Phantom of the Opera," "Time to Say Goodbye").
Un Ballo in Maschera Act I
Runtime: 52 minThe outstanding production of Verdi’s Masked Ball at the Salzburg Festivals 1989 and 1990 was Herbert von Karajan’s legacy to the Festival. Supported by a cast of superlative actor-singers in opulent scenery, Sir George Solti agreed to conduct the opera at short notice after Karajan’s unexpected death in 1989. The production had been expected to be a highlight in Karajan’s series of Verdi operas at Salzburg. Karajan’s celebrated ability to unite a cultivated sound with dramatic effects was known to create extraordinary and highly acclaimed opera events. For Un ballo in maschera Karajan planned something unusual: He would not set the opera in colonial Massachusetts, as the censors had forced Verdi to do when he was composing the work, but in Stockholm in the 1790s at the court of King Gustav III of Sweden, as Verdi had originally conceived his work. Together with the film director John Schlesinger and his stage team, Karajan developed a concept that promised theatrical splendour equal to the musical excellence that the conductor and the handpicked cast of singers would surely provide in collaboration with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. But this was not to be: stage rehearsals had already begun for the opening performance of the 1989 festival when Karajan died on 16 July. Therefore it was extraordinarily lucky that a conductor of Sir Georg Solti’s standing, was prepared to undertake the task just a week before the premiere, and with the whole world watching. He and the staging by Hollywood film director John Schlesinger was acclaimed by audience and press alike.
Runtime: 1 hr 10 minThe legendary Luciano Pavarotti duets unforgettably with a host of the world’s greatest musical stars, including Elton John, Bono, Andrea Bocelli, Sting, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion and many more, in a programme featuring such classics as Live Like Horses, Miss Sarajevo, The Magic Of Love, It’s A Man’s World and ’O sole mio.
Summer Night Concert 2015
Runtime: 1 hr 33 minThe Vienna Philharmonic performed its annual Summer Night Concert Schönbrunn, an open-air concert with free admission, in the unique ambience of the gardens of Schönbrunn Palace on Thursday, May 14, 2015. Zubin Mehta conducted the Summer Night Concert with Rudolf Buchbinder as soloist.
This year's concert, which also represented the opening concert of the Vienna Festival, was attended by 100,000 visitors.
With this open-air concert in Schönbrunn, the Vienna Philharmonic wishes to provide all Viennese, as well as visitors to the city, with a special musical experience in the impressive setting of Schönbrunn Palace and its beautiful baroque gardens, a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site.
The Ring of the Nibelung - Götterdämmerung - Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires
Runtime: 1 hr 23 minTo honor Richard Wagner’s 200th birthday, Latin America’s famous opera house in Buenos Aires hosts a one-of-a-kind project: Performing Wagner’s powerful music drama “The Ring of the Nibelung” on stage in a single day. Stage Director Valentina Carrasco, who has worked with the award-winning Catalonian theatre group “La Fura dels Baus” for the past ten years, transposes the “Colón Ring” into the 1970s – the period of Argentina’s military dictatorship. Symbols of that age are seen on the costumes, while the characters also make references to the period in their behavior and gestures.
Hearing the Silence
Runtime: 60 minAn original portrait sketched under the sign of the German poet Holderin - the actor Bruno Ganz recites on of his poems at the beginning of the film. Claudio Abbado is sparing in his words although he is generous in his emotions. That is what makes this documentary special: Abbado talks about his illness (he was operated on for cancer in 2001) and the revolution this illness caused in his life, he shares a little of his private life and talks about his work as a conductor.
We also see him at the age of 35, in 1965, in an interview he gave in Vienna just after directing the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in Bruckner’s First Symphony. We also find out that he and his companion Zubin Meha sang in the choirs of Musikverein under the direction of Bruno Walter, Herbert von Karajan, Hermann Scherchen and Joseph Krips solely for the purpose of attending the rehearsals of these legendary conductors.
Many interviews of orchestra musicians, namely those from Berlin who talk about his departure in 2002, provide us with a clearer picture of his personality. As for the testimonial of is friend Bruno Ganz, it gives us a very personal insight into this exceptional being.
Sehnsucht - Münchner Rundfunkorchester
Runtime: 58 minBeethoven, Mozart, Weber and Wagner, performed by German tenor Jonas Kaufmann and the Münchner Rundfunkorchester, under the direction of Michael Güttler.
This recital includes masterpieces such as Dies Bildnis ist bezaubernd schön, from The Magic Flute by Mozart, In fernem Land, from Wagner's Lohengrin, the Valkyrie's Winterstürme, or excerpts from Weber's Freischütz.