mon 22/07/2024

Opera Buzz

Henze attends his own Elegy

David Nice

Many of us younger opera-goers have never had a chance until now to see Hans Werner Henze's Elegy for Young Lovers in action.

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Wainwright's Prima Donna IS Anna Russell

David Nice

Those of us who shied away from the Manchester world premiere of Rufus Wainwright's first opera, Prima Donna, last year are biting our nails about the first London performance at Sadler's Wells Theatre on Monday. Fond as we are of some masterly songs on his albums, we wonder if he's boxing above his weight in indulging his love of opera... and in French, too (OK, he grew up speaking it, but even so, it's pretentious French for English-speaking audiences). This evening,...

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Royal Opera House hits low note

Josh Spero The Royal Opera House's website in stasis

As anyone on the Royal Opera House's mailing list will no doubt be aware, today is the first day you can book for the new season. In theory.

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1954 Cunning Little Vixen

Igor Toronyi-Lalic Front of Suprapon's recording of The Cunning Little Vixen

Filmed extracts of a fantastically vivid 1954 production of Janáček's The Cunning Little Vixen have been unearthed by the great blogger Doundou Tchil of Classical Iconoclast. Václav Neumann is the conductor; Berlin's Komische Oper is the house. Whets the appetite for tonight's Bill Bryden revival production at Covent Garden. Hard to imagine the...

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New World theme for Edinburgh International Festival 2010

Ismene Brown

Jonathan Mills has announced the programme for Edinburgh International Festival 2010, on a theme of modern culture in the New Worlds of the Americas and Australasia.

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Irina awaits the Spring

David Nice

The redoubtable and always stylish Russian mezzo-soprano Irina Arkhipova, who died a week ago at the age of 85, still has a song to sing about the prolonged winter we're enduring. Among many roles in which she plunged in true Slavic fashion to contralto depths was that of the shepherd-boy Lel in Rimsky-Korsakov's Snegurochka (The Snow Maiden). This "Spring fairy-tale" is about how we're destined to carry on shivering until the Snow Maiden, daughter of Frost and Spring,...

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Lawyers and Libretti

Josh Spero Sarastro initating Pamina in Allen & Overy's Magic Flute

Let’s get the obvious one out of the way first: if a law firm is going to put on an opera, it should probably be Gilbert & Sullivan’s Trial by Jury. Instead, having progressed through G&S’s Mikado and Pirates of Penzance in previous years, Magic Circle firm Allen & Overy last weekend staged The Magic Flute, and not just anywhere, but at Glyndebourne. The house which has resounded to Peter Pears and Felicity Lott this time was filled by...

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BBC joins opera talent hunt

Ismene Brown

The BBC launched today its own popular opera talent hunt (details below), while ITV's Popstar to Operastar has suffered heavy critical attack and disappointing public ratings. The BBC's Commissioning Editor for Music and Events, Jan Younghusband, added a private comment to...

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theartsdesk an essential site of 2009: BBC Radio 5 Live

theartsdesk

radio 5theartsdesk received a New Year's gift last night when we were given a significant accolade from BBC Radio 5 Live. In Web 2009 with Helen and Olly, the station's podcasters and self-styled "internet obsessives" Helen Zaltzman and Olly Mann recognised theartsdesk as one of the five "essential sites of 20...

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Boxing Day Bloat: theartsdesk recommends

theartsdesk

The morning after the day before has dawned. If you're not inclined to join the shopping queues, theartsdesk is happy to suggest alternatives. Our writers recommend all sorts of cultural things you could get up to in the next week.

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