R. Strauss: Salome (michael, Moser, Volle)
Label: OPUS ARTE
Nadja Michael (Salome), Michael Volle (Jokanaan), Michaela Schuster (Herodias), Thomas Moser (Herod), Joseph Kaiser (Narraboth) The Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Philippe Jordan (conductor) & David McVicar (stage director)
Recorded live at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden on the 3rd, 6th and 8th March 2008. Warning: Contains nudity and scenes of violence. Bonus Documentary – ‘David McVicar: A work in process’.
2010 THE GRAMOPHONE CLASSICAL MUSIC GUIDE “For all its nudity and gore Salome ends the evening in a white petticoat red with blood (mostly from the executioner) – this is a conventional production which lays out the story straightforwardly. It is based on Pasolini's film Salo which gives us the 1930s setting and 'decadent' extras (who could be much more animated) standing around watching an everyday story of the Herods. Es Devlin's handsome set shows us Herod's banquet in progress upstairs in addition to the main area of the basement, and becomes nicely mobile during a Dance in Seven Rooms (which, according to the accompanying documentary, depicts Salome's abused upbringing). Nadja Michael has become in short order Europe's Number One not-quite-hochdramatische choice for physically demanding productions. She is an attractive Salome, moving like a dancer, as physically unafraid as she is vocally – and this tricky sing, with its ferocious tuning, suits her. Michael Volle is an imposing, richtoned Narraboth, given little to do but emote about Jesus. Both these German artists make a considerable impact through their own voices and physicality – but it is Thomas Moser's weakly human Herod who emerges as the most truly lived-in character. Philippe Jordan seems to have balanced his orchestra extremely well for both house and cast and is especially alert to the most modern twists of Strauss's harmonies. The filming (Jonathan Haswell) is sensitive to David McVicar's work while being much more than merely a static record.”