DVD International // 2000 // 57 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Rogers (Retired) // April 25th, 2000
Early eighteenth baroque composer Vivaldi was a trained priest who had music in his heart. The Italian priest became renowned in his time as a composer of operas and concertos, and was recognized as a leading figure in the musical world. The mark of Vivaldi compositions is often the complex stringed instrument work required to properly play them.
Another in their line of "background" DVDs, DVD International selected Vivaldi and paired it to a broader selection of video imagery than graced the Bach disc. The video uses architectural and landscape images, but also urban and city life shots of quaint village festivals and festivities. While the video remains soft and of generally low quality, there glaring artifacting, low frame rates, and heavy image degradation present on the Bach disc is absent on the Vivaldi. It is almost as if a separate team prepared the video for Vivaldi, both in composition of the shots, and in the engineering of them on the disc.
The sound, of course, remains strong. Presented in both Dolby 5.1 and DTS, the sound field is immersive and deep. Surrounds are used only to broaden the field, and overall, the entire musical arrangement projects wonderfully from the speakers and is wonderfully done.
As with the Bach disc, the video is not up to DVD standards of quality and engineering. This is unfortunate, but ultimately fails to be as critical an error as it would become for a more visual title. Here, it's just an unfortunate oversight, hopefully to be corrected with future editions of the line.
The disc length remains low, a more prominent reason for some when deciding a purchase. Barely an hour of material is presented.
Basically, the Naxos Musical Journey line remains constant, with the same qualities. The sound is excellent, but the length is marginal. Video is unfortunately lacking. That sums the line up so far.
Great idea, wonderful sound, not a bad buy, though a bit pricey for an hour of material.
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Scales of Justice
Studio: DVD International
* Full Frame
* DTS 5.1 Surround (Music Only)
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (Music Only)
Running Time: 57 Minutes
Release Year: 2000
MPAA Rating: Not Rated