Friday, May 24, 2019

Theatre

Wake Review – Birmingham Opera Company Breathe Life Into Lazarus Tale

No one could ever accuse the Birmingham Opera Company of lacking ambition. Over the last quarter-century its productions have spanned the whole history of opera, from Monteverdi’s Return of Ulysses to the British premiere of Stockhausen’s Mittwoch...

Dove’s Flight Takes off Superbly to Launch Royal Academy’s New Theatre

After Stephen Barlow’s winning production for Opera Holland Park – a recent triumph at Scottish Opera despite a couple of performances being grounded by snow – it was wonderful to experience this work again...

From the House of the Dead Review – Formidable Performances Humanise Janáček’s Vision of...

Krzysztof Warlikowski’s new Royal Opera staging of Janáček’s From the House of the Dead, the first in the company’s history, opens with silent but subtitled footage of the philosopher Michel Foucaultheatedly discussing the prison system, which...

The Week in Classical: Goldilocks and the Three Little Pigs; The Marriage of Figaro...

This is the Opera Story’s second show – the company launched itself last year with Snow White. It started as it means to go on – its new opera, Goldilocks and the Three Little Pigs, receiving...

A Midsummer Night’s Dream review – Carsen’s Classic Staging Makes a Welcome Return

Here’s a thing. Robert Carsen’s production of Britten’s Shakespeare opera first arrived at ENO in 1995 and was most recently revived in 2004. In 2011, it was replaced by a Christopher Alden production whose seedy, sexualised 1950s boys’...

The Met’s Bohème: As if it were new

The Met’s 36-year old, Franco Zeffirelli production of La bohème, like the opera itself, does not really get old. The lavish sets – realistic on a staggering scale – still pleases the eye and...

A Thrilling Don Giovanni at Welsh National Opera

After Don Giovanni has just shanked the Commendatore, Leporello asks: “Who’s dead? You, or the old man?” It normally gets a big laugh. But WNO’s revival of John Caird’s production, directed by Caroline Chaney here, leaves this...

Suffering, Transcendence, Redemption: The Met’s Parsifal is a Long Trip, Well Worth It

The Met’s now-five-year-old production of Wagner’s Parsifal is a harrowing affair. There is neither a blade of grass nor a shrub for Act 1’s characters to touch or smell, just uneven expanses of gray/brown dirt separated...

Flight Review – Jonathan Dove’s Airport Opera Soars Above the Ordinary

The banality of the airport departure lounge – a bland environment of bustle and tedium – seems an unlikely setting for an opera, but in Jonathan Dove’s Flight this humdrum environment becomes a microcosm of...

Iolanthe review – House of Lords Satire Bursts with Frothy Exuberance

Satire may not be quite timeless, but it keeps well. WS Gilbert wrote his libretto for Iolanthe in 1882, sending up many things but mostly the hereditary peerage; now, not two decades after the House of...

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