tue 21/11/2017

opera directors

La Traviata, Opera North

You’d expect a regional opera company to focus on the core repertoire in these economically challenging times. Happily, Opera North’s La traviata is a new staging and not a weary revival. Alessandro Talvi’s production doesn’t take many risks and...

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Alright on the Night: at Glyndebourne with the OAE

If you only ever listened to opera from recordings, you might overlook the fact that it's as much theatre as it is music. In the opera house on the night, it's all well and good for the orchestra to play the score and the singers to sing their parts...

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theartsdesk in Buxton: Dvořák rarity, Gluck tercentenary

Buxton has gone Bohemian, digging into Dvořák’s treasure trove and celebrating Gluck’s tercentenary. The choice of Dvořák’s The Jacobin fits the Buxton Festival tradition of rooting out neglected works, since this has been unjustly overlooked since...

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The Barber of Seville, Longborough Festival

Speaking from the stage before curtain-up on The Barber, Longborough’s founder and chairman, Martin Graham, stressed the hard work put in by director Richard Studer and conductor Jonathan Lyness on their two 2014 productions, this one and Tosca. He...

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Ariadne auf Naxos, Royal Opera

Can it really be 12 years since Antonio Pappano inaugurated his transformative era as the Royal Opera’s Music Director conducting Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos? Christof Loy’s production seemed so radical at the time. We were put off our guard by...

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Don Quichotte, Grange Park Opera

Grange Park Opera has a strong penchant for French repertoire, and has been valiant, consistent and highly imaginative in presenting it ever since 1998, when Wasfi Kani and Michael Moody first started inviting opera-goers to the unique setting of a...

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theartsdesk in Lyon: Britten Fêted

“Assez vu” (“seen enough”) is the first line of Benjamin Britten’s last Rimbaud setting in his electric song cycle Les Illuminations. Victor Hugo and Paul Verlaine had been the objects of his 14-year old attention in the Quatre Chansons françaises;...

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Mark Wigglesworth for ENO

This is great news. It should have been great news back in 2006-7, when Wigglesworth – Mark, not to be confused with the young, photogenic Ryan, composer and, when I last saw him, barely competent baton-wielder - was among the contenders for the...

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Manon, Royal Opera

Massenet had just two lingering thoughts about Manon when he wrote his memoirs in 1910, a quarter-century after the opera's first performance. First, he enjoyed reminding himself how many times it had been performed (a staggering 763 by the...

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Patrice Chéreau, 1944-2013: a partial view

It has to be partial, because out of the 10 opera productions from the iconoclastic French actor-director, who died yesterday of lung cancer at the age of 68, I’ve seen but two, on screen only – but a big two at that – and only three of his 11 films...

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Die Fledermaus, English National Opera

Rich, racy, randy and irreverent: such were the R words gathered up by a Canadian critic to capture the essence of Christopher Alden’s production of Johann Strauss’s cork-popping operetta when it premiered in Toronto last year. Other R words, alas,...

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Interview: Serge Dorny of Opéra de Lyon

 A lot has changed in the 10 years since Serge Dorny arrived at Lyon Opera. Attendance in a supposedly dying art form has risen to 96 per cent, and no charges of elitism or unfashionable nostalgia have deterred the 25 per cent of Lyon’s...

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