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TURN-ONS AND TURN-OFFS IN CURRENT HOME ENTERTAINMENT RELEASES : Excellent Good Fair Poor : VIDEOCASSETTES

February 11, 1986|MARTIN BERNHEIMER | Compiled by Terry Atkinson

Verdi: "Il Trovatore." Sony. $79.95. This 1983 telecast documents an unintentional travesty from Australian Opera. Sidney Nolan's sets suggest shadow-and-splotch abstraction. Luciana Arrighi's costumes invoke "Pirates of Penzance." Elijah Moshinsky's staging fuses tableaux with live cartoons. Mezzo Lauris Elms sings well, but Jonathan Summers is a lyric baritone gone astray and Kenneth Collins a caricature tenor. The raison d'etre for this misguided affair, limply conducted by Richard Bonynge, must be Joan Sutherland's unidiomatic, dramatically stilted, vocally resplendent Leonora.

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