sun 24/06/2018

ENO

Mørk, Bergen Philharmonic, Gardner, Cadogan Hall

The Bergen Philharmonic recently appointed Edward Gardner as its Chief Conductor – ENO’s loss is Bergen’s gain. He is contracted to 2021, so this is the start of a long relationship. On the strength of this concert, the London leg of a UK tour, it...

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Best of 2016: Opera

It was the best and worst of years for English National Opera. Best, because principals, chorus and orchestra seem united in acclaiming their Music Director of 14 months, Mark Wigglesworth, for his work at a level most had only dreamed of (“from the...

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ENO's Marvellous Miller in pictures

It should have been unmodified rapture: a gathering of English National Opera team members old and new celebrating the doyen of the company's best-selling productions. And, as has always happened with the artistic side of the company, this loving...

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Lulu, English National Opera

After a day of sheer pain, would it be endless night or cathartic relief at ENO? Both, must be the answer, and much more, all at once. Iconoclastic Frank Wedekind's "earth-spirit" Lulu, exploited as a street-child but now able to turn the tables for...

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Martyn Brabbins: a safe pair of hands at ENO

No-one can easily replace Mark Wigglesworth as Music Director of English National Opera: ask any of the musicians working there and you'll find they're all heartbroken. That said, they could not have chosen a nicer man or a better all-round musician...

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Don Giovanni, English National Opera

Pace-perfect musical articulation and meaningful surprises in the direction: both were to be expected after the conductor-generated sludge and the production overkill of the new Royal Opera Così fan tutte. Mark Wigglesworth has form in Mozart at ENO...

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Proms at...Roundhouse: London Sinfonietta, Gourlay

Some enchanted afternoon in Camden Town… the Proms returned to the Roundhouse after four decades with a dreamlike fusion of sound, space and light. Ron Arad’s Curtain Call – a 360° installation of 5,600 sillicon rods – encircled the London...

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Alberto Remedios: 'his natural instrument obeyed his inner thoughts with ease'

When I sang Isolde to Alberto’s Tristan at English National Opera all those years ago, it was a joy to hear such wonderful tenor sounds in my ears, my heart and my soul. It was always difficult for him to memorise his work and up until the first...

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Tristan and Isolde, English National Opera

"Bad Star Trek episodes" is how one director describes a certain unfortunate look in would-be intergalactic opera productions. The late Nikolaus Lehnhoff came perilously close to it in his Glyndebourne Tristan und Isolde but offered a coherent...

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Madam Butterfly, English National Opera

There’s a beautiful moment at the start of Act II of Anthony Minghella’s Madam Butterfly. Butterfly kneels, leaning forward to kiss Pinkerton, seated in his defiantly Western armchair. A paper screen moves swiftly across our view, and almost before...

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Daniel Kramer for ENO Artistic Director: cause for cautious optimism?

Within the wounded, divided company of English National Opera – artists and administration still at loggerheads – the buzz is surprisingly positive. CEO Cressida Pollock does finally seem to be listening: union deputies from chorus and orchestra met...

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Sunset Boulevard, London Coliseum

Could the fascination of Glenn Close's Norma Desmond transcend the frequent bathos of Lloyd Webber? Would they have sorted out the miking which wrecked last year's first choice of semi-ENO musical, the infinitely superior Sweeney Todd? Yes, to...

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