4 Rick Fulfils a Long Held Dreamnotrickwakeman | 08/10/2009 | See all notrickwakeman's reviews (1)I wanted to go to one of the special peformances of the Six Wives at Hampton Court earlier this year, but when I saw the ticket prices I knew I'd have to wait and make do with the DVD that was promised.Well, after what seemed forever I got my hands on the said DVD last week, and I am not disappointed! It's a wonderful show with some typical Rick extravagances - it just wouldn't be the same without them!The backdrop of Hampton Court Palace lit up in all sorts of changing colours is fantastic to see.In addition to the album tracks there is the missing 'Defender of the Faith' piece on Henry himself that had to be left out because there was no more room to fit it on the vinyl. In truth, what was performed at the Hampton Court gig was written new by Rick based on the basic theme and ideas that he had created back in the early 70's. But it's a suitably magnificent atmospheric piece that is not out of place among the original great stuff. The other brand new pieces - 'Tudorture' and the closer 'Tudorock' which includes the 'traditional' keytar dual between Rick and Adam - also acquit themselves well.All the original tracks are brilliantly performed by Rick, and the Orchestra Europa conducted by (Rick's very old friend) Guy Protheroe, the (full!) English Chamber Choir and the (ever changing) English Rock Ensemble all sound terrific - in particular the orchestral arrangements and choir voices give a wonderful depth and pathos to whole experience.Higlights? Well for me, it was Rick's lovely keyboard runs on, for instance, 'Kathryn Howard' and 'Katherine Parr'; the ever magnificent 'Jane Seymour' played on a splendid elevated church-type organ, and 'Ann Bolyen' a 'tour de force' and a particular favourite of mine - Rick played the beautiful closing hymn section on an elevated piano.I'm not a technical guy but the picture and sound quality seem very acceptable.Any downsides? I may not be popular but though a Narrator was a great idea to introduce the pieces I just found Brian Blessed to be a little to much, departing ill advisedly at times from the paper script. And it would have been nice to have him dressed up in period dress! But, hey, that's just a little gripe about what is a magnificent spectacle. This was clearly a very emotional time for Rick and I applaud him for this great achievement.