“…Riccardo Muti conducts Don Pasquale in Ravenna - a great celebration for everyone.” This press quote from the Italian music magazine Il giornale della musica hit the mark exactly. Watching this realistic, young and vital production, directed by the 21 year old Andrea da Rosa and listening to a high potential and unspent young cast, you feel how powerful, charming and timeless this score by Donizetti is. This production was recorded during the Ravenna Festival in the gorgeous and patriarchal Teatro Dante Alighieri, in December 2006. Maestro Riccardo Muti shows one more time, what it means to perform an Italian opera with a young and professional Italian cast – an outstanding and breathtaking performance and really, "a great celebration for everyone".
This Magic Flute (part of the M22 project) is charming and delightful, a sheer joy. It achieves just the right balance between the fairytale and spiritual elements of the singspiel and is brimming with inventiveness. The bright pop-up-book colours and toyshop imagery perfectly represent the pantomime aspect of this "magic opera" which meshes well with the altogether more serious business of Sarastro's realm of Enlightenment wisdom. I love the burlesque touches which occur throughout and the comic scenes around Papageno which make this such a happy and constantly droll performance…
Riccardo Muti conducts the ever-wonderful VPO at a good pace and with a transparency that brings out the finest touches of orchestral detail.
Luca Ronconi’s production of Ernani opened La Scala’s 1982–83 season in high style. The spectacular yet subtly sinister sets by Ezio Frigerio—each scene has something of the tomb about it—and the sumptuous costuming by Franca Squarciapino complement a largely effective quartet of principals. Watching this production, one feels both the glamour and the decadence of the Castilian court—a genteel decay seems to be lurking behind every pillar and beneath every wig… - Raymond Tuttle, FANFARE
Recorded in 2010 during Riccardo Muti's first subscription concerts as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's tenth music director, this new double-CD release pairs Hector Berlioz's beloved Symphonie fantastique with its sequel, Lélio, ou le retour de la vie (Lélio, or The Return to Life). Berlioz intended Symphonie fantastique to be followed by Lélio in concert, as the artist returns to life to comment anew on music and art. Maestro Muti and the CSO are joined in Lélio by the acclaimed actor Gérard Depardieu as the narrator, tenor Mario Zeffiri, bass-baritone Kyle Ketelsen, and the Chicago Symphony Chorus. With the "conclusion and complement" of Symphonie fantastique, as Berlioz referred to Lélio, this recording increases listeners' familiarity with the music of a daring and revolutionary composer.