sun 05/07/2015

Verdi

La Traviata: Love, Death and Divas, BBC Two

Verdi's La Traviata has become one of the best-loved and most-performed works in the operatic repertoire, but this is no thanks to sections of the English press. In this entertaining romp through the opera's history, presenters Tom Service and...

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First Person: Once More With Feeling

As a child back in Lithuania, I always wanted to be an actor, but opera has taken me in a different direction – though recently it has opened up doors for the big screen and TV. This month Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail is being beamed...

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Il Trovatore, Scottish Opera

"The darkness deceived me," sings Leonora in Act I as she mistakenly rushes into the arms of the Count di Luna, rather than those of her beloved, the mysterious troubador Manrico who’s been serenading her for nights on end. Seeing Robert B Dickson’s...

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Best of 2014: Opera

When everything works – conducting, singing, production, costumes, sets, lighting, choreography where relevant – then there’s nothing like the art of opera. But how often does that happen? In my experience, very seldom, but not this year. It's been...

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Un Ballo in Maschera, Royal Opera

Covent Garden’s masked balls circling around the New Year feature not the seasonal bourgeois Viennese couple and a bat-winged conspirator but a king, his best friend’s wife and – excessively so in this production – the grim reaper. Big voices are...

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I Due Foscari, Royal Opera

First the good news. At 73, is Plácido Domingo anywhere near retiring? Er, no. When the question came up in an interview on Sunday (on video below), he answered : "The reason I don't retire is because I can still sing." And then with a glint in his...

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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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Otello, English National Opera

From one great operatic storm to another. 2014 opened at English National Opera with David Alden’s Peter Grimes, gale-tossed and wet with sea-spray, and now the director turns his attention to Verdi’s Otello. Restlessly urgent, Edward Gardner’s...

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La traviata, Glyndebourne

Some of us have witnessed Traviatas where single stars were born: Angela Gheorghiu for Solti at the Royal Opera nearly 20 years ago springs quickest to mind. Some would claim a dream couple in Anna Netrebko and Rolando Villazon on peak form at...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Tenor Michael Fabiano

You can usually trust the buzz around rehearsals. From Glyndebourne, five weeks into preparation for La traviata, which opens tomorrow, one of the team working on Tom Cairns’ new production declared in an e-mail conversation that newcomer soprano...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Soprano Kristine Opolais

The best that you can usually expect from an interview is that it takes off from stock beginnings in spontaneous and unexpected directions. This one was rather exciting from the start: the end of a day in the life of a new role, Puccini's good-time...

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La Traviata, Royal Opera

The German soprano Diana Damrau has had the role of Violetta Valéry in La Traviata in her sights for a very long time. As she has explained in interviews, seeing the Zeffirelli film of the opera, with Teresa Stratas in the title role, as a 12-year...

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