What's Up?

Here's news about high-definition video disc ("HDVD") recordings of opera, ballet, classical music, plays, performance art, and paintings. We've got hard-to-find critical reports on hundreds of HDVDs. Pick the best titles for your excelsisphere.

March 20, 2019. We just posted a new review of the fun ballet Le Corsaire which earns an A for the swashbucklers. We recently reviewed the exciting grade-A modern dance title The Art of Ohad Naharin as well as the A+ hit recording of Handel’s Saul oratorio at Glyndebourne. Thanks to Wonk Lewis Chang for urging us to review (and loaning us his disc) of the exotic Le coq d’or opera by Rimsky-Korsakov that we recently graded A-. Chang also helped us review the delightful grade-A Le comte Ory opera published in 2015 by the Met, an A+ Berg Wozzeck opera recording, and Handel’s A+ Alcina opera directed by Katie Mitchell.

On our new home page you will see the beginnings of the most recent 26 stories about various titles. You reach the rest of the archives by using the Alphalist or our search tool. One problem is that the search tool doesn’t recognize all those tricky diacritical marks that we encounter in many languages. So if your search has unusual diacritical marks, try to figure out a search without the unusual marks.

It’s been about 10 years since we started this website. Since then, here’s what we have done:

  • We screened more than 1400 Blu-ray titles of fine-arts recordings that might meet our standards for hi-fi sound and HD video. We excluded over 20% of these titles as impostors mostly for (1) legacy material of poor artistic quality, (2) obsolete sound, and/or (3) video resolution too poor to benefit from modern TV displays. Our screening left about 1100 individual purchasable packages on our Alphalist. We believe this is the only comprehensive public list anywhere that is limited to high-quality fine-arts Blu-ray video titles.