Titles Excluded by Categories
Not all potential fine-art HDVD titles make it to the Alphalist. In order to limit our website to the "best of the best", we have learned to be quite strict in excluding poor material. This approach is also necessary as we strive to provide decent coverage to our material with volunteer work.
We exclude quite a few fine-art HDVDs in categories that usually contain weak content. We will make exceptions to many of the exclusions in the list below when we observe that a recording has special merit:
pure youth-orchestra recordings
Orchestras that were established for "political" reasons (this includes the Solti-founded Orchestra for Peace and Barenboims's West-Eastern Divan). Alas, we have been mostly disappointed in these kind of "celebrity" projects.
Opera and orchestra performances recorded in big public spaces like the Berlin Waltbühne, The Hollywood Bowl, the Arena di Verona, and the Bregenzer Lake Stage. Performances in small out-door spaces are often allowed when the unusual venue adds charm rather distractions.
religious titles even if there are classical selections involved
jazz artists with their interpretations of classical music
movie music titles
solo recitals where the artist uses sheet music
hip-hop choreography, as we are already spending too much time on this on You-Tube
if Liberace were still with us, we would exclude his videos because we are snobs
Titles that were published only in 3D. In 2018, 3D was long dead. We will keep on the Alphalist titles that were published in 2D and 3D, but the 3D only films should be culled.
Traditional New Year's programs or annual galas for the supporters of a performing group. Most of these are highly repetitive with little other than marches, waltzes, and polkas. We cover these bon-bons only if there is a world-famous soloist performing serious stuff or some other special feature or bonus that would make the title worthwhile in a HT. Any New Year's show or routine gala that makes it to our Alphalist is certain to have exceptional merit that warrants your attention.
puppets, manionettes, and the like
samplers and highlights --- we do cover a bargain disc with a full good-quality production plus bonus samplers
A special problem area has been the Shakespeare plays. Most directors (stage or video) cut William at least some. Where to draw the line? Well, we exclude a Shakespeare HDVD unless it (1) is substantially complete or (2) has enough of the original text to encourage a young person to aspire to read the whole play. So we exclude the Romeo and Juliet gangster movie with Leonardo DiCaprio. It was fun to watch, but it only has maybe 15% of Shakespeare's original text. But we do cover the Joss Whedon Much Ado About Nothing. It has maybe 50% of the text, one character is cut, and it's filmed in modern times. But it's used in high-schools in the US as a stepping stone to the full play, which, due to it's difficulty, is taught mostly in college or graduate schools.
Most documentaries we have seen about the fine-arts are too superficial to bother with. The typical fine-arts documentary consists of comments about artist X from artists A thru G. This is a complete waste, as (in modern times anyway) it is taboo for any artist to say anything critical about another. (That's why there is a need for critics like us.)
We do cover a few HDVD documentaries that:
also include substantial actual performances files, or
relate to the development of fine-arts video (such as titles about early, ground-breaking Karajan motion pictures films of symphony performances), or
are shown (in our judgment) to provide real and important information about the work of a particular artist (such as our A- documentary about Vincent Van Gogh, which also has fabulous images of most of his famous paintings).
Individual Excluded Titles
If you think something is out in Blu-ray and it's not on our Alphalist, first see if the title falls into one of the excluded categories discussed above. Below is a more detailed list of titles excluded individually, mostly for technical reasons.
Our definition of HDVD requires at least 4.0 sound (most titles have 5.0 or better sound). We usually exclude titles with only stereo (or mono) sound. Most of the exceptions we have made to the surround sound rule are for contemporary dance recordings from smaller companies. We will exclude a title if we feel the video source is too poor to take advantage of high-definition TV. Stated differently, we usually don't accept DVD-quality video spruced up in Blu-ray dress.
Remember to use the find tool with your computer to search this long list quickly!
Kulture Pirates of Penzance for stereo sound only and poor PQ.
Kulture La Bayadère for stereo sound only and poor PQ.
Kulture Romeo & Juliet ballet for poor PQ.
Arthaus 108106 Madama Butterfly for stereo sound only.
BBC Hamlet with David Tennant and Patrick Stewart. This video was based on a famous recent stage production of Hamlet by the Royal Shakespeare Company. It was then revived as a movie shot on locations to be shown on British television. Fine movie music was written for the film; but, probably because it was intended for broadcast television, the sound was recorded in stereo sound only.
Arthaus Callas assoluta for stereo sound only and lack of content that benefits from high-definition video.
Dacapo Antikrist opera for poor PQ.
The NHK Ozawa Beethoven Symphony No. 7 & Mahler Symphony No. 9 video is pitifully obsolete with DVD-grade performances shot in 1989 and 2002. The stereo sound is unlistenable to one who is used to the 96kHz/24 bit 5.0 PCM sound provided by NHK on recent HDVD recordings like their Brahms Symphony No. 2 & Shostakovich Symphony No. 5. The NHK Ozawa Beethoven Symphony No. 7 & Mahler Symphony No. 9 might be of interest to a fan of the Boston Symphony Orchestra---but this is legacy material to us.
The Gaumont Carmen film (Francesco Rosi) has images with a pleasing "film-like" feel, although soft compared to the sharp images we now enjoy with HD live recordings. The cinematographic treatment works well, and it's a delight to see and hear Placido Domingo and Ruggero Raimondi in their youthful, most handsome prime. But what lets this disc down is the 1984 movie sound --- dynamically compressed, almost harsh, with a very narrow sound stage. The voices are bearable, but the throttled orchestral sound is a huge, huge disappointment compared to Blu-ray standards. So this title must be excluded for poor SQ. Gordon Smith.
The Kultur Blu-ray issue of Paul Czinner's Der Rosenkavalier from 1961 is probably the best video yet of this much-loved motion picture recording (with Karajan, Schwarzkopf, Jurinac, Rothenberger, and Edelmann at the Salzburg Festival). But both the PQ (grainy and bleached) and SQ (muffled stero) are now hopelessly dated.
The ITV Studios Hamlet with Laurence Olivier is a classic film, but we don't report it here due to PQ and lack of surround sound.
The MGM Kenneth Branagh Much Ado About Nothing from 1993 is a very nice adaptation, but it has only stereo inputs to the AVR.
The House of Classics Messiah with the Choir of King's College was a much-loved DVD, but neither PQ nor SQ were improved enough in the Blu-ray version to qualify here.
The ECM Sounds and Silence Blu-ray is far removed from our mission even though ECM is an important player in producing modern classical music records, mostly on CDs. But we would welcome, for example, an HDVD from ECM featuring the music and/or life of Arvo Pärt, a composer who has worked with ECM.
In 2011, NHK published 5 related titles, with music from the Saito Kinen Orchestra conducted by Ozawa, that appear to be legacy material. As best we can tell, they do have the audiophile features that appear in the Saito Kinen recordings from about 2006 on. We have therefore excluded NSBS-15069, NSBS-16033, NSBS-16035, NSBS-16037, and NSBS-16052.
We also exclude the Argerich Beppu Festival recording HSBS-16667. Half the disc is definitely legacy material from 2001; the 2007 segment appears to be Argerich playing with a student orchestra.
The EuroArts L'incoronatione di Poppea is excluded for having only stereo sound.
The Medici Classics Jerome Rose Plays Brahms is excluded for having only stereo sound.
The EuroArts Barenboim Plays Mozart Piano Concertos is excluded for having only stereo sound.
The Kurtur Don Quixote is excluded for bad PQ and stereo sound only. The package claims to have 5.1 Dolby sound. However, when this option is selected, I get an error message that the surround sound is "blocked by disc." This title came out later as Warner Classics 256459460, which is also excluded.
The Arthaus Musik Magifique is excluded for having stereo sound only.
The Sony Classical Liszt Now disc is excluded for only having stereo sound.
Idéale Audience 3079564 Martha Argerich at the Verbier Festival, is excluded for having only stereo sound.
NHK Eugene Onegin, NSBS-15640, is a reissue of a recording released in 2008 in DVD. This means it was probably recorded at very beginning of or before the time when HD picture quality was considered important. Until we get information that qualifies this title for our site, we will exclude it because of it's high cost.
The EuroArts title Bruckner Symphony No.7 with Celibidache conducting the Berliner Philamoniker is excluded because it was shot in 1992, is upscaled from SD, and has only stereo sound.
Margot/The Royal Ballet from BFS is legacy material. We don't know if the Blu-ray verison would be better than the DVD.
The Kulture The Nutcracker (Baryshnikov/Kirkland) is hopeless obsolete in every way. It does present a neat concept that we are currently missing in our HDVDs: Clara falls in love with the Prince, and Drosselmeyer is in a jam because his niece doesn't want to come home!
The C Major Solti - Journal of a Lifetime is excluded for having only stereo sound.
Tomomi Nishimoto is a highly respected (and extremely beautiful) Japanese female conductor. She has recorded, with relatively unknown orchestras, classical music published in Blu-ray for the Japanese market under the King Records name. From the meager information available to us now, we can't decide if the quality of these recordings would justify buying these titles, especially considering the high value of the yen. Until we get information that qualifies them for our site, we will exclude the following King recordings: KIXM50, KIXM51, KIXM52, and KIXM53. We would welcome more information about these titles.
EuroArts published in Blu-ray all the Beethoven Piano Sonatas played by Daniel Barenboim in 1983-84. This title is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2072244, a concert title with Zubin Mehta conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1977 (Mozart Bassoon Concerto and Bartok Concerto for Orchestra) is excluded as legacy material with stereo sound only.
The Warner Classics Wagner Ring title with Barenboim conducting at Bayreuth in 1991-1992 is excluded as legacy material.
The Kultur Le Nozze di Figaro (Fleming, Finley, and Haitink) was shot for DVD in 1994 and is excluded as legacy material.
The Kultur Theodora opera (Upshaw, Sellers, and Christie) was shot for DVD in 1996 and is excluded as legacy material.
The Pony Canyon The Best of Kumakawa (PCXE-50130) is excluded for stereo sound only.
The Deutsche Oper Berlin Die Hugenotten, published by Arthaus, was recorded in 1991. Few titles from this era benefit from Blu-ray standards. We exclude this as legacy material unless we get proof that is has high-definition video as well as decent surround sound.
The NVC (Kultur) Nureyev as Dancer & as Choreographer (3 disc package) is excluded as legacy material.
Ideale Audience 3079864, Spira Mirabilis, a documentary (and performance of Schumann Symphony No. 1) is excluded for stereo sound only.
NVC Arts Marriage of Figaro (#2564646101) Glyndebourne 1994 is excluded for stereo sound only.
NVC Arts Theodora (#2564646145) Glyndebourne 1996 is excluded for stereo sound only.
Euroarts 2057374 is a boxset of 9 Beethoven Symphonies recorded 2000-2001 by Abbado with the Berlin Philharmonic. This was released as a boxset in DVD in 2009, and was well-received. In 2000-2001, HD TV was still a bit in the future. In the early days on this website, we accepted a couple of titles made in 1999 or 2000. But we now consider video this old to be legacy material.
Euroarts Mahler Symphony No. 4 (2055484) and Mahler Symphony No. 9 (2054004), both performed by the Abbado Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra, are excluded because we don't cover pure youth orchestra recordings. Anyone with an interest in youth orchestras will doubtless find these titles rewarding.
The Accentus Eastern Lucerne Festival with the Boliver Youth Orchestra is excluded as a pure youth orchestra performance.
Euroarts 2058594, Perlman Conducts, with a Beethoven Sym. No. 6 and the "Triple Concerto" is excluded because it only has stereo sound.
Warner Classics Tosca (2564645292) from 1992 was a famous recording, but it is excluded in Blu-ray form for stereo sound only.
Euroarts 2055484 with Mahler Symphony No. 4 is excluded as a pure youth orchestra performance.
Arthaus 108083 Tristan und Isolde from 1993 is excluded as legacy material. This originally came out in VHS and Laserdisc, then in a DVD published by TDK, and Arthaus now has the rights. Fred Cohn in the February 2014 Opera News at pages 55-56 states that the image on this is "washed-out, even on Blu-ray." He also notes that the original 4:3 picture is cropped to 16:9 format; and that at the moment of his death, Tristan's head drops right out of the frame.
The NVC (Kultur) Manon Lescaut (2564643917) was recorded in 1997. With an aspect ratio of 4:3 and stereo sound, this is legacy material.
Euroarts 2012744, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra 60th Anniversary Concert, was recorded in 1996 and has only stereo sound---a legacy title.
The Kultur Manon Lescaut from Glyndebourne (#4203) with its 4:3 picture and stereo sound is legacy material. Alert: this is out in two versions with different artwork on the front.
The C Major title Glenn Gould---The Russian Journey deals with material from 1957---56 years ago at this writing. That's legacy, baby.
The Graham Vick Lulu from Glyndebourne (Kutur BD 2253 and other packages) is legacy material with its 4:3 picture and stereo sound.
The Jon Lord Concerto with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic (Eagle Rock) is excluded because the concerto itself is audio only (there are extensive bonus features in video).
Arthaus #108089, Celibidache Rehearses Bruckner's Ninth, is excluded as legacy material and for stereo sound only. Where did they dig this one up?
The Kutur DB4602 Tosca is legacy stuff with a 4:3 picture and stereo sound. This title is a different but similar to Warner Classics Tosca (2564645292).
The Berlin Philharmonic plays a concert each May 1st in some different European city, and this is called the Europakonzert series. Euroarts has long had the video rights to this series. We exclude as legacy material the Europakonzert titles for 2001 and earlier. These titles have bland generic artwork on the keepcases, probably because the recordings are not good enough (often with stereo sound only) to warrant investment in pretty artwork. We do cover each of the more recent Europakonzert titles. We generally list these in the Alphalist under the names of the major pieces played in each. If you search for "europakonzert" using our search tool, you will find a list of all the titles in that series that we cover.
The Euroarts 2073934, Bruno Monsaingeon Edition Vol. 1, is excluded as legacy material.
The Ideal Audience Verdi Requiem (3079964) is legacy material recorded in 1964.
The Euroarts Celebrating Verdi (3079084) is a compilation mostly if not entirely of legacy material.
Jerome Rose Plays Beethoven Live (Medici Classics DVDBRM60089) is excluded for stereo sound only. Rose is a highly respected piano professor and performer. He self-publishes under the Medici name and uses VAI as distributor. It would be too harsh to call these Medici recordings vanity items. But we think they are of interest mostly to piano students and academia.
The Warner Classics Don Carlos (2564634780) was performed in 1996 (18 years ago at this writing). It appeared in VHS in 1997 and in DVD in 2000 with 4:3 picture and Dolby Digital sound. It got good reviews then except that the video was considered weak. We don't see how this can take advantage of HD TV and exclude as legacy material.
The Warner Classics The Makropulos Case (2564636281) was recorded in 1995, and it is excluded as legacy material because of its 4:3 picture and stereo sound.
Euroarts 3085294 with Perahia playing the complete Beethoven piano concertos is legacy material with a 4:3 picture and stereo sound.
Euroarts 3073984, Piano Classic Archives, and 3073974, String Classic Archives, with multiple selections by various artists, is legacy material with stereo sound and obsolete video.
Euroarts 3073994, the Collectior's Edition, has 4:3 video and something called "Dual Mono" spelled with inital caps! To our knowledge, this is the oldest trollop ever to be forced out on the street for one last time in blu-ray hotpants.
Euroarts 2013324 Gala from Berlin with Abbado is excluded for stereo only. Abbado was a great conductor who made a lot of fine recordings during his life. Many or most of them are now obsolete, so buyer beware if you want HDVD quality.
Euroarts 2012784, the Brahms Ein Deutsches Requiem conducted by Abbado, is excluded for stereo sound.
Euroarts 3075054, Classic Archive Celebrating Strauss, is 62 minutes of old stuff in stereo. Excluded.
C Major 716404 is called Igor Stravinsky in Hollywood. Could be great, but it's obviouly old video material and only has stereo sound. We have reported on a number of documentaries in stereo sound only. But this one is only 54 minutes long and has subtitles only in English and German. This fails our smell test. We will excluded it until somebody can show us that it benefits from Blu-ray treatment and that it's worth buying. Stated differently: just buy the DVD.
DG 735038, Rigoletto with Pavarotti/Chailly, is excluded for 4:3 letterbox video.
C Major 717004, Simon Rattle conducts El Sistema at Salzburg Festival. This is entirely a youth concert, a content category we exclude. Jeremy Nicholas reviewed this disc in the 2014 October Gramophone at page 49. He leaves no doubt that this title would be enthralling for anyone interested in youth orchestras or music programs for handicapped children.
Euroarts 2072184, Karl Böhm in Rehearsal and Performance, is excluded as 1970 legacy material.
Arthaus Musik 103111, Gluck 300, is excluded for having only stereo sound.
The ancient DG Madama Butterfly (735131), conducted by Herbert von Karajan, is excluded for 4:3 pillerbox video.
Euroarts 3075004, Collector's Edition, is excluded as pure legacy material.
Arthaus Musik 108134, Stravinsky L'Histoire du Soldat ballet, is excluded as legacy material. It originally came out in 1989 in a 4:3 DVD with stereo sound.
The Idéale Audience Yuri Temirkanov Conducts Rachmaninov and Rimsky-Korakov (including Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 2, Symphonic Dances; and Rimsky-Korakov Scheherazade) is excluded for only having stereo sound.
Arthaus published Tutto Puccini with 11 Blu-ray discs that (counting Il Trittico as 1) give you all 11 Puccini operas in one box (107547). Of the 11 titles, 7 consist of upscaled legacy material. The 4 HDVDs in the box have already been reviewed on this website: Edgar (decent production of obscure work), Tosca (we graded D), La Rondine (decent production), and Il Trittico (an excellent production we graded A). So for about $185 list price, you get exactly 1 title that belongs on every shelf. It's hard to see why anyone would want this box unless the legacy titles are all stellar stuff, and checking that out is beyond the scope of this website.
Arthaus Musik 108132, Platee, is excluded as legacy material and for stereo sound only. We sometimes make exceptions to the "no stereo only" rule for documentary and ballet titles. But we do not cover operas unless they have surround sound.
Arthaus Musik 108135, Hansel und Gretel, has upscaled video and stereo sound and is excluded as legacy material.
Arthaus Musik 108129, Harnoncourt Opera Collection, is excluded. The Fidelio and the Freischutz operas are upscaled and have stereo only. The Schumann Genoveva opera was published earlier as an HDVD that meets our standards. But the information we now have states that the Genoveva provided with this collection only has stereo sound. Buyer beware.
Arthaus Musik 108130, Harnoncourt Opera Collection, is excluded for stereo only.
Arthaus 108120, Wagner vs Verdi, is a collection of 6 upscaled documentaries with stereo sound and is legacy stuff.
C Major 718604, Best of Verdi Arias, and 718804, Best of Verdi Choruses, are offerred at a bargain- basement prices. These might be terrific buys, but they appear to be mostly if not entirely legacy titles.
Arthaus Musik 108122 Beethoven Symphony No. 9 Ode to Freedom, is a documentary about the lives of professional musicians in East German during and after the Cold War. Included is a legacy performance of the Beethoven Symphony No. 9 in 4:3 video and stereo. We doubt that HDVD technology contributes anything to this, so we exclude.
Arthaus Musik 107544 has The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, Swan Lake, and The Sleeping Beauty in one package.The Nutcracker and the Mouse King is a highly regarded HDVD. The other titles appear to be legacy. So if you want to get the "Mouse King" version of Nutcracker, you might get two legacy titles also for very little money. But the position of this website is that a free DVD is no bargain, so we exclude the collection.
EuroArts 2045094, the Bach Christmas Oratorio, was recorded in 1999 and was an admired DVD which appears to have gone out of production. The artwork on the Blu-ray keepcase is faded. The new DVD might be an excellent purchase, but the Blu-ray is excluded as a legacy item.
The Arthaus Mogli ballet is excluded for stereo sound only.
The Arthaus Anutcracker, the hip-hop Nutcracker, is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2059814, the Mahler Chamber Orchestra playing Britten and Shostakovich, is excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108127, Johann Strauss Simplicius, is excluded for upscale video.
Arthaus Musik 108130, with Harnoncourt conducting Mozart operas, is excluded for upscaled picture and stereo sound.
EuroArts 2075014, Vol. 2 Yehudi Minuhin, is excluded as legacy material.
Arthaus Musik 108123, Romeos and Juliettes, is a Hip Hop dance title which we exclude for stereo sound only. We will make an exception and put this on the Alphalist if we learn that the title is good enough to benefit from Blu-ray video. We saw a clip on YouTube that was not encouraging.
The famous Joseph Losey Don Giovanni film came out in 1980, and was one of the best "opera movies" ever. Gaumont restored this and published it in 2011 in Blu-ray in a Region B version. At that time Gordon Smith and I agreed that it ought to be reported on this website. In 2014 Olive Films published a Region A version. That prompted me to review both versions to see if they were the same. It turns out the Region A core film is similar, but the Region A product was cheapened in several ways such as no extras. But while making this review, I came to realize that neither version deserves to be considered an HDVD. The production values and directing are, to be sure, fabulous. The video, while having enough resolution, is a bit faded, lacks color saturation, and has some motion artifacts. You can tell it's from an older source. But the sound is the killer. Obviously we are interested in HD video on this website. But we are also impressed by how the sound quality of our titles continues to improve. The music on the Losey film had to be reworked from mono or stereo to create "surround" sound. The singing, although a bit harsh, is clear. But the recording of the orchestra now sounds hopelessly weak and muddy to me. So I decided to pull our coverage of the Losey DG because I now deem it to be legacy material.
The Teldec Tosca (2564645292) with 4:3 video and stereo sound is excluded as legacy material.
EuroArts 2001024, Mozart on Tour, is excluded for 4:3 video
EuroArts 3075084, Collectors Edition, is excluded for 4:3 video and "dual mono", whatever that is.
Arthaus Musik published in DVD a number of titles about fine-art paintings derived from video that was originally produced in the 1980s for a SD television show called "1000 Masterpieces" or "1000 Meisterwerke." Arthaus released in Blu-ray a "sampler" title (108131) called "300 Minutes of Art" from this series. This sampler has 30 10-minute mini-programs, each about a single work of a famous artist. The video was appropriate for a DVD. But the pictures now look "shopworn" and don't have the intense color and fine resolution we expect in HDVDs. The sound is humdrum Dolby Digital stereo. We regard all "1000 Masterpieces" content as legacy material.
EuroArts 2075064, with Termirkanov conducting Rachmaninov and Rimsky-Korsakov, is excluded for stereo sound.
Arthaus Musik 108124, Orpheus dance piece is excluded for having only stereo sound.
Arthaus Musik 108153, Gala Mariinsky II concert is excluded for having only stereo sound.
Arthaus Musik 108174, Johann Strauss Gala concert is excluded for having only stereo sound.
Arthaus Musik 108128, Purcell The Fairy Queen opera is excluded for having only stereo sound.
Arthaus Musik 107546, The Jiří Kylián Edition ballet compilation is excluded. With the exception of the Kaguyahime title, which we have covered as a separate story, all of this box set appears to be legacy material with stereo and/or 4:3 picture.
EuroArts 2016364, Mozart Requiem, was made in 1999; it's excluded as legacy material due to stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108147, Handel's Ariodante is excluded for upscaled video and stereo sound only.
Ideale Audience 3073514 Richter: L'Insoumis, a documentary about Richter is excluded for 4:3 image and stereo only.
EuroArts 2012534 and 2012538 (yes, two different numbers for the same title) the 1996 Europakonzert, is excluded for stereo sound only. Also, as explained above, we generally exclude as legacy material the Europakonzert titles for 2001 and earlier.
EuroArts 2013504, the 96/97/98 New Year's Eve Concerts with the Berlin Phil, is excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108154, An Evening with Alvin Ailey is excluded for for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108174, Johann Strauss Gala is excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108176, Jiří Kylián/Black & White is excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108147, Jiří Kylián's Car Men, sounds like a blast, but it's excluded for upscaled video and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108148, Jiří Kylián/Sinfonietta, Symphony in D, and Stamping Ground is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108149, Jiří Kylián/Nederlands Dans Theater ballet is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108150, Jiří Kylián/Nederlands Dance Theatre Celebrates is excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108151, Jiří Kylián Forgotten Memories is excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 108152, Jiří Kylián the Choreographer, is excluded for upscale video and stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2072724, Beethoven Symphonies 5 and 9, is excluded for upscale video and stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2061078, The Planets (with ice skating and synchronized swimming), is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2061088, The Firebird, is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2013114, Debussy Préludes---Book 1, is excluded for upscale pillarbox and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109062, Rossini Opera Festival, is excluded because half the titles in the box are DVDs.
ITV Studio Home Entertainment just released in Blu-ray a 1944 Henry V film and 1948 Hamlet film with Laurence Olivier---both are obviously legacy items.
Network Studio has just released in Blu-ray a 1955 Richard III film with Laurence Olivier, another legacy work.
Illuminations Studio released in 2010 a film adaptation of Macbeth staring Patrick Stewart and Kate Fleetwod. This film is excluded because it only has stereo sound.
ECM 0762897, Marta & Gyorgy Kurtág: In Memoriam Haydée, a recital of short piano pieces, is excluded for stereo sound only.
The cross-over violinist David Garrett made a movie (UCXL-9001) based on the life of Paganini named Der Teufelsgeiger (The Devil's Violinist). This was released in Japan in Blu-ray form. It appears the soap-opera aspects of this film are more important than the violin-concert aspects. We will exclude it unless someone gives us information that would convince us to put it on the Alphalist.
NHK NSBS-16037 with the Saito Kinen Orchestra conducted by Osawa has selections from Ravel and Takemitsu. It appears much of this is older legacy material (1992-1996) and that the disc does not have 96kHz/24-bit sound. We would cover this expensive disc if someone would convince us that it benefits from HD playback and is free of DVDitis.
EuroArts 2001944, Prometheus, Musical Variation on a Myth, was made in 1992 and is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 3074978, Alceste, is excluded for having stereo sound only.
Delos DV7008, Dinara Alieva in Moscow, is excluded for having stereo sound only.
StudioCanal The Tales of Hoffmann is excluded for being legacy material.
VAI DVDVAIBD8202 Sharon Isbin: Troubador is excluded for having stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2053038, Solti: Rehearsal & Performance, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2060854, Masters of Classical Music (4 discs), looks like a good deal, but is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 3074978, Alceste, is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 2060868, Carlos Kleiber: Rehearsal & Performance, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109087, Verdi Aida, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109089, Ponchielli La Gioconda, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109091, Verdi Macbeth, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.>
Arthaus Musik 109093, Prokofiev War and Peace, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109095, Puccini Turandot, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.>
Arthaus Musik 109097, Bizet Carmen, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109099, Strauss Rosenkavalier, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109101, Mozart Così fan tutte, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109105, Verdi Un ballo in maschera, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109107, Weber Missa Sancta No. 1, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109109, Mahler Symphony No. 4, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109111, Walton London Concert, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109120, Mahler Symphony No. 3, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109122, Dvorak The Wood Dove, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109124, The Kings Singers, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Virtuosty, is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 20611108, Manuel de Falla - When the Fire Burns, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Klassik und Kalter Krieg, for stereo only.
C Major 731704, Mozart: Davide Penitente is excluded for being an animal show.
EuroArts 2060974, Waldbuhne 2015: Lights, Camera, Action, is excluded for being purely movie soundtrack material.
C Major 730404, A John Williams Celebration, is excluded for being purely movie soundtrack material.
Arthaus Musik 109140, Massenet Werther, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109142, Verdi Rigoletto, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109144, Verdi Simon Bocanegra, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109146, Mozart Nozze di Figaro, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109148, Boito Mefistofele, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109150, Dvořák Rusalka, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109152, Britten Gloriana, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109154, Wagner Tannhäuser, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109158, Verdi Nabucco, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109160, Músorgski Khovanshchina, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109081, The Searchers of the Grail, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 101791, Best Wishes from Luciano Pavarotti, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109173, Górecki The Symphony of Sorrowful Songs, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109130, Lehar The Merry Widow, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo sound only.
Opus Arte OABD7135D, The Rape of Lucretia, is excluded because was originally filmed in SD and stereo sound and later reworked and republished in Blu-ray livery. Opus Arte deserves full credit for disclosing this in contrast to so many other publishers who attempt to pass off legacy material as having the same quality as items filmed later.
The Erato Tristan and Isolde recorded at La Scala in 2007 with Barenboim conducting was a famous DVD. It's excluded, however, as legacy matter because the Blu-ray version has a 4:3 aspect ratio.
Euroarts title 2060974, Lights, Camera, Action, is excluded as all movie music. This was the 2015 Waldbühne concert.
Warner Classics 2564605415, Maria Callas: Toujours, is excluded as legacy material.
Warner Classics 2564605423, Maria Callas in Concert, is excluded as legacy material.
Warner Classics 2564605440, Maria Callas at Covent Garden, is excluded as legacy material.
Decca 4747226, Andre Rieu - Wonderful World, is excluded as kitsch.
C Major 732404, Sibelius Symphonies Nos. 1,2,5 & 7 were recorded in the 1980s on motion-picture film and in stereo. We will consider this legacy material until someone can show us that this title ought to reported as an HDVD.
Sony 377380, The Highest Level, with Lang Lang and the Berliner Philharmoniker, has only stereo sound with its video recordings. It also has audiophile-level sound recordings with no video. So this strange recording doesn't meet our standards.
Arthaus Musik 109167, Symphony fantastique, is 4:3 and stereo only legacy material. It's also ridiculous to offer 58 minutes of content with a single symphony on a Blu-ray disc that can hold 4 hours of music.
Arthaus Musik 109139, Jardi Tancat, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109162, Fledermaus, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 101799, Kirov Classics, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Euroarts title 2061424, In Rehearsal and Performance, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 108153, Mariinsky Gala (opening of the new "Mariinsky II" theater in St. Petersburg) is excluded for stereo only. This was produced in 2013, with mostly classical music and some ballet, but without surround sound!
The following titles, all from Arthaus Musik, are excluded for having 4:3 picture and for being upscaled: 109180 Mozart Requiem, 109179 King Priam, 109181 L'Africaine, 109182 Damnation of Faust, 109187 Penguin Cafe, 109209 Death for Five Voices, 109185 Swan Lake, 109184 Bohème, 109183 Cinderella, 109203 Gazza Ladra, 109199 Norma, 109201 Orlando, 109156 Wozzeck, 109169 Ken Russell The Planets, 109211 Story of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, and 109213 Tribute to Knappertsbusch.
The following titles, all from Arthaus Musik, are excluded for having upscaled picture: 111111 Nozze di Figaro, 109177 Bartoli 3 Titles, 109186 Coppélia, 109207 Cunning Vixen, 109197 Madame Butterfly, 109195 Freischütz, 109193 Iphigénie, 109191 Zauberflöte, 109205 Dialogues.
The following titles, all from Warner Classics, are excluded for having 4:3 picture, having only mono sound, and for being upscaled: 0825646054152 Maria Callas: Toujours, 0825646054237 Maria Callas in Concert, and 0825646054404 Maria Callas at Covent Garden.
Arthaus Musik 109189, Gulda Mozart Recital, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 108121, A Nutcracker, is a dance title excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109224, Fidelio, is upscaled from a 2004 film.
Arthaus Musik 109219, St. Matthew Passion (Hamburg Ballet) is excluded for stereo sound only.
Arthaus Musik 109232, Carreras Best Wishes, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109236, Mozart/Da Ponte Operas, is excluded for uprezzed video.
Arthaus Musik 109222, Rattle/20th Century, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
EuroArts 2061284, Virtuosity, is excluded for stereo sound only.
EuroArts 3074974, Alceste, is excluded for stereo sound only.
C Major 736004, Bernstein, Larger than Life, is excluded for lack of HD video with surround sound.
C Major 719904. Thielemann Ein deutsches Requiem is excluded as legacy material that does not take reasonable advantage of HD video. The performance was strong, sound quality is good, and video resolution was also good. But this was performed in 2007 at the dawn of HDVD. The video suffers from erratic and poor lighting, focus and image stability errors, excessive zooming and panning, DVDitis, and sloppiness/poor judgement in editing. We believe that a good video can lift an excellent performance above all its audio-only peers. But an inept video can also kill a great performance for us. There were good reasons why this title was not published in Blu-ray until 8 years after it was shot.
EuroArts 2053674, Carmina Burana, is excluded for stereo only.
The following Arthaus Musik titles are excluded for stereo only: 109239, 109241, 109243, 109245, and 109247 (all called Great Arias) as well as 109264, Magic Flute for Children.
Arthaus Musik 109254, Lloyd Newson Selections, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
C Major, Joni Mitchell's The Fiddle and the Drum, is excluded (736404). This began as a DVD with stereo pop music sound. We will not accept the "remastering" of old stereo into alleged 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound.
Arthaus Musik 109262, a Gounod Romeo et Juliette, began life in 2003 as a 70-minute popularized mini-version of the opera. Alagna and Gheorghiu sang the lead roles. Actors were used for all other parts with singing dubbed in. This is excluded for many reasons included upscaled HD video.
Arthaus Musik 101799, Kirov Classics, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109275, Death in Venice, is excluded for stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109271, Nederlands Dans Theater, is excluded for stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109277, Nutcracker, is excluded for stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109279, Car Men, is excluded for stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109281, Giselle, is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109283, Six Ballets, is excluded for stereo only.
Arthaus Musik 109250, Liedestoll, is excluded for mono sound only.
The Kenneth Branagh Henry V from 1989 is regarded as an important movie. But it had a standard movie soundtrack. Shout! Factory has just released this in Blu-ray, and it is excluded for legacy stereo sound.
Arthaus 109177, Best Wishes from Cecilia Bartoli, has 3 opera recordings from 1988, 2001, and 2002. This is excluded for some 4:3, some stereo only, and upscaled video.
Naxos Verdi Box (NBD0052-54) has a Tosca from 1992 that started life 4:3 / stereo and a Traviata from 2000 I saw for sale in October 2016 in DVD for $3.00. Some better is the Rigoletto from 2010. But it was made for TV, which usually means stereo sound. The product descriptions on the box are skillfully written to be true but incomplete and misleading. This is maybe the nastiest Blu-ray offering I've seen and no bargain at $72. And this is being pushed to consumers at a time when we are starting to move into the new era of 4K! Kerberos had fun ripping the pants off this legacy material.
Euroarts 0880242640147 Brahms Complete Chamber Music is excluded for 4:3 picture and stereo only.
C Major 751304, Prey Schubert Song Cycles is legacy material in 4:3. Prey died in 1998.
Sony 88985332979 Lang Lang's New York Rhapsody is excluded as crossover material (shown on PBS).
EuroArts 2057394, Silversterkonzert 2008, is excluded for stereo sound only.
Sony 88985329122, Festliches Adventskonzert 2015, is excluded for stereo sound only.
The Shout!Factory Candide recording was, I think, originally made for TV, came out in DVD in 2005, and is now offered as in Blu-ray. It's excluded for stereo sound only.
Axiom Films Don Giovanni starring Christopher Maltman is excluded because it's a movie cut to about half of the opera.
Gramola GRAM20001, Beethoven Complete Works for Violin and Piano, is excluded for stereo sound only.
BelAir BAC412, 1789:Theatre Du Soleil, is a 40-year old movie (about the French Revolution), now pimped out in Blu-ray rags. It's excluded for mono sound.
C Major 740504, Die Zauberfloete, is excluded because it is a student work, albeit doubtless a very fine one.
Mr. Gaga is a documentary film by Tomer Heymann about Ohad Nadarin's dance vision. It was made over the course of 8 years and is probably an important resource for anyone interested in contemporary dance. But we have not been able to determine who published this title in Blu-ray or if it is available for purchase generally. (It appears it was sold mostly or solely in Germany.) If someone could help learn more about this title, we would be happy to cover it if it meets our standards for HD video and surround sound.
The ancient Kultur Nureyev Don Quixote (Australian Ballet) is excluded for 4:3 video.
The Mariinsky label Golden Cockerel opera (MAR0596) is excluded for stereo sound only.
The LSO album of French music LSO3038 is excluded for stereo sound only.
The Naxos NBD0060 Pixel dance title is excluded for stereo sound only.
The C Major 741904 Mozart Requiem is excluded as an animal act.
The Sony title Roland Kaiser - Live in Dresden is excludedfor stereo sound only.
Ideal Audience International 3079964, Verdi Requiem, is excluded for pillarbox, B/W, and mono.
Warner Classics 9029580420, Maria Callas Remastered, is legacy material from 50 years ago or more.
Arthaus Verdi Missa da Requiem with Price, Norman, Carreras, and Raimondi was a treasured DVD and Arthaus has no doubt reclad this in Blu-ray as well as possible, but the video was made in 1982 and is legacy legend.
The EuroVideo Carmen with Migenes, Domingo, Raimondi, and Maazel was an opera movie from 1984 that eventully became a beloved VHS and DVD. Sorry, it's legacy now.
The Studiocanal (or is it Arthaus?) Carmen with Antonio Gades, Laura del Sol, Cristina Hoyos, etc. plus music from Paco de Lucía came out in 1983 as an opera movie. It's legacy stuff, and apparently is afflicted with embedded subtitles in German. The spritural successor to this might be our Carmen dance show that was choreographed by Gades (it's a dance concert, not a movie).
Mariinsky MAR0597, The Tale of Tsar Saltan, would be a welcome recording of an intriguing Russian opera, but the Mariinshy cut quality by publishing in stereo sound only, and this title is excluded.
LSO3038, Ravel, Dutilleaux & Delage looks like a fine program of French music, and it got an award from BBC Music Magazine. But it has 48kHz/16-bit stereo only. The LSO tries hard in their literature to obscure that there is no surround sound. We bought it just to find out for sure. This was originally recorded to show on French TV. So no need for surround sound. The video has no substitles for the songs sung in French and no translated subtitles. All 4 pieces have movements. But there are no track numbers in the booklet or subtitles in the video to announce the movements you encounter. Worst of all, this title has a terminal case of DVDitis --- it was designed to be shown on SD French TV. True, the Blu-ray version looks a lot better than the DVD that comes in the package. But it's still a loser on obsolete video content. The performance and SQ are both excellent. So you could just treat this as a CD, except you would turn on the video for the Delage songs where the problem of DVDitis is reduced by the small forces involved (plus Bullock is pretty impressive in this). All considered, this is a shoddy package for the HT; and it's sad to see this being offered by the LSO, which is supposed to be a reputable operation that's probably subsidized by British taxpayers.
LSO3028, Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring with Hannigan and Rattle looks like a spectacular program. But it has 48kHz/16-bit stereo only. I would welcome a chance to see Hannigan in all the selections on this disc. But it probably suffers from the same defects as LSO3038 discussed above and is excluded.
EuroArts 8024282334, In Rehearsal and Performance, is exlcuded for being a standard DVD-quality video repackaged as a Blu-ray and for having stereo-only sound.
Naxos NBD0068V, Copland Conducts Copland, is excluded for having stereo-only sound.
C Major 745104, Maria Callas - Magic Moments of Music is excluded for having stereo-only sound.
The AIX Bryan Pezzone Piano Pieces, the Idéale Audience Menahem Pressler Recital, and the Oxingale O'Riley's Liszt titles are excluded because the artists played from sheet music.
The following documentaries are excluded for limited fine-arts content: Argerich-Evening Talks; Carlos Kleiber: I Am Lost to the World; Carlos Kleiber: Traces to Nowhere; Colón Ring; GORZARAN Time Passing; The Italian Character; Mission Mozart (Lang Lang); Orchestra Mozart (Abbado); Paths through the Labyrinth; Reichsorchester; Richard Strauss/End of Rainbow; Silk Road; Kinshasa Symphony; El Sistema; Die Thomaner; Unquiet Traveller; and Wagner's Dream.
The AIX Chamber Music Palisades is an audiophile sound demo record with respectable local artists playing a short program in soft video. It has been replaced by the AIX Mozart Chamber Music disc as our reference program for high-fidelity sound.
C Major 714204, Glenn Gould, the Russian Journey, is legacy material from 1957 and is also in stereo.
The LSO Live recording of Bruckner Symphony No. 8 is excluded for having stereo-only sound.
C Major 746504, Haydn Symphonies with Leonard Bernstein, is excluded for having stereo-only sound, for being in 4:3 aspect ratio, and for being legacy material.
C Major 746304, Tristan und Isolde with Leonard Bernstein, is excluded for having stereo-only sound, for being in 4:3 aspect ratio, and for being legacy material.
C Major 800104, Birgit Nilsson: A League of Her Own documentary is excluded for having stereo-only sound.
Alpha 292, Le sacre du printemps, is excluded under our rule that no title will be reported unless the video lasts more than 35 minutes. (This unusual recording has Le sacre twice, once as a CD with sound only and again with a Blu-ray video. Both tracts last, it seems, 35:58 minutes, for a total of almost 72 minutes.) Mark Pullinger (who liked the musical performance) commented in the April 2018 Gramophone, page 66, that the video contains "deliberate blurring" and short clips designed to create a "restless feel." All this goes against our view that the videographer should be neutral and go unnoticed by using as few clips as possible in all cases, whether the pace of the music is fast or slow.
C Major 746104, a box set with 6 Salzburg Festival concerts, is excluded. One of the concerts is played by youth orchestra and another is by the West-Eastern Divan, a "political" orchestra we don't cover. The remaining concerts are covered on the website. Probably the best thing is for the consumer to just buy the individual titles he most prefers.
C Major 746704, Leonard Bernstein at Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival is excluded for being stereo-only, 4:3 legacy material.
NVC Arts/Kultur 0825646405428, Berg Lulu with Christine Schafer is excluded for being stereo-only, 4:3 legacy material.
Royal Opera House OA 3D 7096D, Carmen in 3D, is culled as worthless after the death of 3D. We also culled OA BD7188D, which was this same 3D film reissued in 2D. The result was a terrible mess as the 3D production had been altered in many ways to take advantage of 3D. But these alterations looked ridiculous in 2D later.
Harmonia Mundi Wozzeck, HMD980905354, is excluded for having only stereo sound.
Yuja, C Major 745504, is excluded as a light-weight "road-trip" documentary with only short performances of bonus extras. But if you are interested in Yuga Wang as a person and artist, this would be a good bet.
Naxos Le Comte Ory, NBD0062V, is excluded for having stereo only sound.
Alpha Caligula, ALPHA716, is excluded for having stereo only sound.
Verdi Messa da Requiem from Delos, DV7013, is excluded for having stereo only sound.
C Major Leonard Bernstein’s Young People’s Concerts Vol. 1, 800304, is excluded for being legacy material with stereo-only sound.
EuroArts The Morricone Duel, 8024264884, is excluded for being movie music.
Arthaus Musik Edvard Grieg - What Price Immortality, 109375, is excluded for being a documentary.
Julie Taymor’s 1999 motion picture Titus is excluded. The film originally came out in DVD. Later Twilight Time made a limited edition of 3000 prints published in Blu-ray. Based on reports from motion picture critics who reviewed this, we conclude that the video print does not take reasonable advantage of HD video presentation. (The critics did say that the sound was much better on the Blu-ray than on the DVD.) Taymor’s film was controversial, but movie buffs may want to have it on the shelf. But we are well served with the excellent recording by RSC/Opus Arte of the play Titus Andronicus.
Naxos Léonore opera, NBD0085V, is excluded for having stereo-only sound.
Dynamic Orlando furioso, Blu-ray 57803, was staged outdoors at the Ducal Palace in an area large enough to hold “the excess that is absolutely the heart of this production” per the December 2018 Gramophone, at page 123. Accordingly this is is excluded for arena sickness.
Arthaus Musik Werther, Blu-ray 109140, was recorded in 2005 and is excluded for stereo sound only.
C Major 745704, Giovanna d’Arco, is excluded because the huge and oddly shaped Teatro Farnese in Parma is unsuitable for recording a opera (just as the out-of-doors venues are). If anyone can inform us that this recording is successful when shown in the HT, we will relent.