thu 18/12/2014

Alexandra Coghlan

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Bio
Alexandra is the classical music critic of the New Statesman, and has written on arts for The Times, The Independent, The Guardian, Prospect, Gramophone, Opera Now, The Oxford Times and The Monthly. She was formerly Performing Arts Editor at Time Out, Sydney. She writes about classical music, theatre and film for theartsdesk.

Articles by Alexandra Coghlan

Golem, 1927, Young Vic

British theatre company 1927 celebrate their 10th birthday next year. Over this nearly-decade they have produced just three shows (plus a reimagining of The Magic Flute for Berlin’s Komische Oper)....

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The Way Back Home, ENO, Young Vic

A Martian, a Spitfire and a flatulent penguin are the unlikely ingredients for The Way Back Home, English National Opera’s first foray into the colourful world of children’s opera. And if those don’t...

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Messiah, OAE, Howarth, Royal Festival Hall

Goldilocks would not have been a good conductor. There’s a reason why there isn’t a dynamic marking between mezzo forte and mezzo piano. Mezzo on its own would be a pretty bland state of affairs, sat...

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Pelléas et Mélisande, Philharmonia, Salonen, RFH

In an operatic world in which the director is an increasingly despotic king, it’s good to be reminded that, sometimes, not staging an opera is the most radical reading of all. No elaborate set or...

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Glare, Linbury Studio Theatre

Søren Nils Eichberg’s new opera Glare is advertised as a “taut” thriller. It’s actually a short thriller. Big difference.The question of whether or not opera – a medium that wouldn’t win any prizes...

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Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang, The Rose Playhouse

Is the Rose Playhouse London theatre’s best-kept secret? Or simply its worst-publicised? Either way, this gem of a space, tucked away behind the Globe in Bankside, needs and deserves a greater...

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Levsha, Maryinsky Opera, Barbican Hall

Of course unavoidable circumstances do strike, and concerts do get delayed, but it’s astonishing just how often those circumstances seem to conspire against Valery Gergiev. Last night’s UK premiere...

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'Tis Pity She's a Whore, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

So TFL have banned the Globe’s posters for ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore for being too racy. What a gift. They couldn’t have given the production a better advertising boost if they’d covered every single...

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The Marriage of Figaro, English National Opera

To take Figaro – the ultimate operatic assault on class distinctions and social hierarchies – and set it on a giant revolve is a gesture as wilful as it is elegant. Not only are divisions of above...

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The Trial, Music Theatre Wales, Linbury Studio Theatre

According to the programme essay, Philip Glass describes his latest opera as “serious, but also hilariously funny”. All I can say is, if The Trial is his idea of thigh-slapping hilarity then never,...

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Alcina, The English Concert, Bicket, Barbican Hall

What’s the collective noun for mezzo-sopranos? A "warble"? A "might"? A "trouser"? Whatever it is, it doesn’t get a lot of usage outside a choral context. Where in opera would you ever find multiple...

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Henry IV, Donmar Warehouse

It’s hard to believe that almost two years have passed since Phyllida Lloyd’s Julius Caesar at the Donmar Warehouse. Harriet Walter’s stricken face as the play ended is still burningly fresh in the...

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L'Incoronazione di Poppea, The Academy of Ancient Music, Howarth, Barbican Hall

Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea is an opera with a one-track mind. The music throbs and pulses with dancing desire, suspensions and elaborate embellishments defer gratification, while...

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Piau, Les Paladins, Correas, Wigmore Hall

2014 is the 250th anniversary of the death of Jean-Philippe Rameau, France’s baroque giant and maverick. To say that the UK celebrations have been muted is to put in generously, reconfirming a...

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'For classical musicians, Radiohead are the band'

The first time I interviewed Richard Tognetti he told me a story. Prior to touring the Australian Chamber Orchestra to Japan, the group’s leader and artistic director was discussing publicity with a...

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DiDonato, Lyon Opera Orchestra, Minasi, Barbican Hall

At the end of last night’s giddy, triumphant concert at the Barbican, Joyce DiDonato was presented with a bouquet by a member of the audience. It included, among more conventional flowers, a tomato...

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