Il Turco in Italia
Director: Thomas Grimm
Distributor: Digital Classics Distribution Ltd.
Lenght: 137 mins.
16:9 shot in 1080i HDTV | stereo & 5.1 surround sound
© 2002, a co-production with Kinowelt Home Entertainment, SF DRS, SWR/arte, TSI & TSR
Cecil­ia Bar­to­li has been her­al­ded as the most ex­cit­ing, ac­com­plished Rossini sing­er to ap­pear in the mod­ern era. Fior­illa is the only ma­jor solo role in the com­poser’s "Il turco", which de­rives much of its charm from its en­semble set pieces. It is a part which Bar­to­li was long­ing to take on when she made an au­dio re­cord­ing of the op­era with Ric­cardo Chailly a few years ago. She made her first stage ap­pear­ance as the flir­ta­tious, vi­va­cious and be­guil­ing young wife in this Cesare Lievi pro­duc­tion for Zurich Op­era and, throughout a dazzling col­oratura per­form­ance, oozes charm and ex­plos­ive pas­sion.

Lievi’s dir­ec­tion stresses the Pir­an­del­lian as­pects of the plot – though this time it’s an au­thor in search of six char­ac­ters – and Tul­lio Peri­coli’s de­light­fully play­ful sets and cos­tumes are drawn in a col­our­ful, story­book style, dis­tort­ing scales and per­spect­ives.
All this suits won­der­fully with the prot­ag­on­ists who are ca­ri­ca­tures to a tee: the un­faith­ful wife, the wronged hus­band, the wily, las­ci­vi­ous Turk.

With a cast in­clud­ing Rug­gero Rai­mondi, Paolo Ru­metz, Re­in­aldo Ma­cias, Oliv­er Wid­mer and Ju­dith Schmid, all in fine voice and throw­ing them­selves in­to their roles with gusto, this sta­ging can­not fail to be a hit. Op­era News summed up the per­form­ance as one that "bubbled with high spir­its and such rous­ing vi­tal­ity that one felt as if one were rid­ing a rock­et". Franz Welser-Möst con­ducts the Chor­us and the Or­ches­tra of the Op­era House Zurich.

Avail­able on DVD: a Must, not only for Bar­to­li fans but also for lov­ers of the Itali­an Op­era.