Werther by Massenet - with Jonas Kaufmann, Sophie Koch, Benoit Jacquot director and the National Opera de Paris.
Hard on the heels of a triumphant Lohengrin, Decca follows up with an equally astonishing debut performance of Jonas Kaufmann: Goethe's love-lorn hero Werther in Massenet's romantic opera.
His premiere appearance in the role, in Paris in January 2010, took the French operatic world by storm, his assumption being hailed by Le Monde: "Werther is portrayed by the tenor of the moment, the German Jonas Kaufmann. He brings to the part a sublime timbre (warm, at times "baritonal" and musky), exceptional musicality, a very wide palette of tonal shadings and immaculate diction. Add to that his histrionic gifts and matinée-idol appeal and you've got a cocktail of qualities that rarely all come together at the opera."
He was supported by a superb French cast, including Sophie Koch as Charlotte and Ludovic Tézier as Albert, with the venerable Michel Plasson giving an expansive, lyrical interpretation from the pit. Film director Benoît Jacquot's attractive, straight-forward production, first seen at the Royal Opera House in London, focuses successfully on the various personal dramas of the opera.
Filmed in high definition widescreen by Idéale Audience, this new Werther is Jonas Kaufmann's third Decca DVD, and follows the extraordinary success of his Royal Opera Carmen and the recently-released Lohengrin from Munich.
"What Jonas kaufmann did in Paris was awesome! Absolutely stunning! The whole cast, director and conductor delivered one of the most vibrant and breathtaking Werther ever performed..."
As always, click here for a taste of what's to come.