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Titel / Title The Flying Opera 
Label Nuclear Blast 
Web www.tobiassammet.com
Total run time

Tobias Sammetīs Avantasia: a project that was supposed to last only for a short while but has turned into a real success story. The singer of Edguy goes solo. Now, three years after Avantasiaīs first world tour, the first DVD comes out featuring this unbelievably elaborate show. It always has been Tobiasī dream to make music with his idols and thatīs exactly what he managed to do. Besides Klaus Meine (Scorpions), Kai Hansen (ex-Helloween, Gamma Ray) and Michael Kiske (ex-Helloween) there are many other musicians involved with this project.

The DVD The Flying Opera presents a documentary about Avantasiaīs first world tour including concert impressions from Wacken Open Air in front of 85,000 people and the Masters of Rock festival show in the Czech Republic. On two dics the viewer becomes part of the spectacle. Appearances on this tour were from Bob Catley, Jorn Lande, Andre Matos, Amanda Somerville and Kai Hansen.

Part 1 contains the recording of the gigs at Wacken and the Masters of Rock festival, However, at first glance, itīs hard to see any differences and you have to guess what song was played where. The impressions, especially from the crowd, are amazing, how must the musicians have felt at that moment when so many people were raising their arms into the air? The camera and light are not ideal, though. The angle is switched way too fast and so you have a chaos of pictures; at Wacken almost all fast scenes when e.g. Andre Matos paces over the stage werenīt caught on camera at all. So you realise quickly that the guys behind the camera didnīt really know when the musicians had their turn. Whatīs more, I think itīs a pity that both background singers Amanda Somerville and Cloudy Yang are hardly shown, also Amandaīs solo goes visually unnoticed. Even though, sheīs at the centre of the stage, the camera only catches a glimpse of her after she had already finished her solo part.

Part two is a documentary movie „Around the world in 20 days“ including an interesting interview with Tobias Sammet, which is, however, in English without any subtitles. I donīt think thatīs very nice towards all German fans. One couldīve at least placed on subtitle. In the interview, Tobias talks about the two new albums and it pretty much seems like this really is the last we will see and hear from Avantasia.

With the documentary, you get interesting impressions about the atmosphere on tour especially on stage. Personally, I wouldīve wished for a bit more backstage material and less on stage scenes because this gets boring after a while. And if Jorn Lande wouldnīt joke around in the backstage area occasionally, one would indeed really get bored.

In any case, Avantasia The Flying Opera is a nice bonus for all fans of Tobi and his comrades. Despite certain things that couldīve been done better like light/editing and the documentary, itīs still an absolute must-have for all fans.

Sandy Mahrer

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