Death in Venice: A Tony Palmer Film of the Opera By Britten DVD
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Directed by Tony Palmer
Produced in 1981
Main Language - English
Countries & Regions - British Film
A film of an Benjamin Britten's operatic adaptation of Thomas Mann's haunting novella, Death in Venice.
When he wrote the opera, Britten was already ill, suffering from a botched heart operation, and completing the work at all had clearly been a struggle. But he was determined to write an opera and a leading part specifically for his long-time lover and inspiration, Peter Pears. And it was Pears who gave the triumphant American première of the opera in October the following year at his own debut in the Metropolitan Opera House, New York. Britten listened to the applause over the telephone at home in Suffolk.
It was soon after Britten had died in December 1976 that Pears had first asked Tony Palmer to film the entire opera with all the original cast, if possible on location in Venice. After all, apart from Suffolk, Venice was the place which meant most to Britten. Despite a minuscule budget, Palmer eventually in 1980 managed to fulfil Pears' ambition. This is the filmed record of Britten's opera, with Robert Gard playing the ageing writer, Christoph von Aschenbach, who is fascinated by an aristocratic boy he encounters in Venice.
Length: 132 mins
Cat No: TPDVD176
Format: DVD Colour