wed 17/01/2018

Opera Reviews

The Return of Ulysses, Royal Opera, Roundhouse review - musical drama trumps dodgy stagecraft

david Nice

The power of music solves every problem, at least when as bewitchingly performed as it was here.

Read more...

Salome, Royal Opera review – lurid staging still packs a punch

Gavin Dixon

David McVicar may seem too gentle a soul for the lurid drama of Strauss's Salome, but his production, here returning to Covent Garden for a third revival, packs a punch.

Read more...

National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, Elder, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review – maturity from teenage players

Robert Beale

Seventy years old and still imbued with youthful flair and enthusiasm – that’s the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, which pioneered new territory in its first concert of 2018 last night. The flair and enthusiasm also apply to Sir Mark Elder, who conducted the event.

Read more...

Best of 2017: Opera

david Nice

It may not have been the best year for eye-popping productions; even visionary director Richard Jones fell a bit short with a tame-ish Royal Opera Bohème, though his non-operatic The Twilight Zone is something else. Instead there's been time to reflect on what makes a true...

Read more...

Cendrillon, RNCM, Manchester review - magic and spectacle

Robert Beale

The Royal Northern College of Music’s production of Massenet’s Cendrillon has a particularly strong professional production team, and it shows. This is one of the most attractively spectacular operas the college has mounted for years.

Read more...

Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci, Royal Opera review - one tenor, two samey brutes

david Nice

Are "Cav and Pag" inseparable? Clearly not, to judge from Opera North's "Little Greats" and elsewhere, but it's still the pairing of choice. Tricky, because as music-theatre, Leoncavallo's drama of rough life entwined with rough art stands high above Mascagni's Sicilian village shenanigans, despite great scenes and numbers in both.

Read more...

I, Object review - this operatic double-bill delivers just a single hit

alexandra Coghlan

A comma divides the title of this opera double-bill in two, but the works paired here (Michael Nyman’s The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Kate Whitley’s Unknown Position) each explore what happens when you take it away – when natural divisions, between human and object, self and other, perception and reality are dissolved, dismantled or elided.

Read more...

Falstaff, RLPO, Petrenko, Liverpool Philharmonic Hall review - Bryn Terfel leads a merry dance

david Nice

Even seemingly immortal singers grow old. Sir Bryn is closer to the "Martinmas summer" of Shakespeare's and Verdi's Sir John than when first he put on the fat suit at the Royal Opera 18 years ago. Even if he walks the gouty walk that matches the belly, vocally he seems richer than ever.

Read more...

The Bear, Mid Wales Opera review - small stage, big ambitions

Richard Bratby

Go west, opera-lover: Mid Wales Opera is back in business. In fact, it’s been back since spring this year, when it toured venues in Wales and England with a warmly reviewed Handel Semele and a striking (and impressively cast) Magic Flute inspired by 1970s British sci-fi.

Read more...

The Rake's Progress, Wilton's Music Hall review - mercurial Stravinsky made cumbersome

david Nice

If you're not going to mention the imaginative genius of Stravinsky, Auden and Kallman within the covers of your programme, and the only article, by the director, is titled "Acting Naturally", then the production had better deliver.

Read more...

Pages

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?

latest in today

Art UK, Art of the Nation review - public art in a private s...

Art fairs are vaguely promiscuous. So much art, so many galleries, so very many curators. They’re a glut for the eye yet curiously anodyne — the...

The Commuter review - trouble on the main line

Nobody is more sensitive about the notion of becoming a geriatric action hero than Liam Neeson (“guys, I’m sixty-fucking-five,” as he points out...

Art, Passion and Power: The Story of the Royal Collection, B...

Henry VIII had a troubled marital history and Charles I lost his head, but both have also gone down in...

The Best Plays in London

London is the theatre capital of the world, with more than 50 playhouses offering theatrical entertainment. From the mighty National Theatre to...

The Best Films Out Now

There are films to meet every taste in theartsdesk's guide to the best movies currently on release. In our considered opinion, any of the titles...

CD: First Aid Kit - Ruins

With the tragic passing of Cranberries lead singer Dolores O'Riordan, I've been thinking a lot about the importance of the soundtrack to youth....

Downsizing review - little things please little

Alexander Payne’s best-loved film is Sideways but that title may as well work for everything and anything in his oeuvre. In Election...

DVD/Blu-ray: Hounds of Love

Hounds of Love is the latest in a long line of...