mon 23/09/2019

Armida, Garsington Opera | reviews, news & interviews

Armida, Garsington Opera

Armida, Garsington Opera

A garish stage garden can't compete with the manor grounds, but fine singing saves the day

Rossini's sorceress chooses vengeance over love: Jessica Pratt impresses as Rossini's ArmidaJohan Persson

It's not hard to imagine the Bloomsburyites frolicking around the exquisite Garsington grounds in mock-ups of scenes from Tasso's Gerusalemme liberata. Lady Ottoline, chateleine of the enchanted garden, would writhe as eastern sorceress Armida, though Lytton and co would hardly make a very butch bunch of opposing crusaders. To be honest, there wasn't much more testosterone or sex on show in Rossini's dramatically flimsy, musically elaborate operatic nod to Tasso last night, and the gaudy onstage attempt at a garden of delights couldn't compare with the real thing. But it's something at least to field four light Rossini tenors, albeit of varying ability, and with Jessica Pratt's phenomenal final scene, a star was born.

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It was an amazing night, even if the rain wanted at the begining to scare everyone. The beautiful staging, costumes and amazing voices made a remarcable evening. The orchestra and chorus sounded amazing under the baton of the conducor David Parry. A fantastic cast for Rossini's opera seria .

Rview a tad mean minded. All sorts of echos of things to come from Wagner. Chrous vocally very good but agree about the swiming costumes, but an evenign of delight. Michael E Corby

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