Blog Archives

Charpentier “Medea”, English National Opera, London Coliseum (Review)

Hell hath no fury… and in Medea’s case comes so precipitously that even her children must be taken from the room whenever her demons threaten an unscheduled appearance. That is but one of many telling details that trouble the senses in David McVicar’s new staging of Charpentier’s take on the myth at English National Opera … [Read More]

Posted on 16/02/2013
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Posted in Opera, Reviews

Verdi “Rigoletto”, Royal Opera House

Distressed and decaying amidst crumbling masonry Michael Vale’s brutalist set tilts and turns towards catastrophe like some sort of post-modernist installation. The Court of Mantua is a world off its axis in David McVicar’s much-revived staging of Verdi’s Rigoletto and as this world fornicates its way to extinction it’s as if the roaring boys from … [Read More]

Posted on 31/03/2012
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Posted in Reviews

Wagner “Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg”, Glyndebourne Festival Opera

Some pieces you just have to trust and trust implicitly. When a text is as good as Wagner’s Die Meistersinger it’s a wise director who takes a step back and let the words, the characters, the bountiful score go forth and prosper. Some might call David McVicar’s first Glyndebourne staging “traditional” but that’s something of … [Read More]

Posted on 22/05/2011
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Verdi “Aida”, Royal Opera House

David McVicar’s darkly primitivist Aida was a necessary antidote to the whole tedious tradition of sub-De Mille spectacle in this piece. The cleverest thing about his staging – and I cannot for the life of me work out why it was greeted with such derision on its first outing – is that it honours the … [Read More]

Posted on 12/03/2011
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Adriana sensitively exhumed

Kaufmann and Gheorghiu were not the only star attractions of this early and clearly expensive Christmas gift from the Royal Opera. Cilea’s Frenchified melodrama hasn’t been seen in the house since 1906 and the dusty wing space of Charles Edwards’ extraordinary set looked like it might actually have been excavated from the theatre as it … [Read More]

Posted on 19/11/2010
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