Blog Archives

Dialogues des Carmélites, Royal Opera House

Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites is a special and very particular opera. There is nothing else quite like it. Just as the drama – set to the composer’s own libretto – teeters between fear and faith so too does Poulenc’s score, an extraordinary apposition of austerity and lushness where belief is harmonically consonant, festooned in seraphic … [Read More]

Posted on 30/05/2014
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Posted in Opera, Reviews

Fidelio, English National Opera (Review)

The first words we hear don’t belong to Fidelio at all, the first music does, but not at all where you expect to find it. If you’ve read your programme (and who does before the show begins?) you’ll find a poem entitled “Labyrinth” by Jorge Luis Borges from a collection In Praise of Darkness. … [Read More]

Posted on 26/09/2013
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Janacek “The Cunning Little Vixen”, Glyndebourne Festival Opera

It might be deduced that the only thing worse than working with children and animals would be working with children as animals. But Leos Janacek was unfazed by the old Hollywood adage and his cartoon-strip derived opera The Cunning Little Vixen was spirited from page to stage with uncynical conviction and, it has to be … [Read More]

Posted on 21/05/2012
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Wagner “Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg”, Royal Opera House

The years have undoubtedly taken their toll and what seemed so fresh and new in 1993 – the pristine abstractions of Richard Hudson’s design, the washes of orange and gold light, the assertively jolly Brueghelesque costumes – now looks a little pantomimic. And yet the Shakespearian artifice of Graham Vick’s thoughtful and much-admired staging of … [Read More]

Posted on 20/12/2011
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Posted in Reviews

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