tue 23/04/2024

Rossini

Yende, Vaughan, Cadogan Hall

Lovely singer, consummate pianist, shame about the programme. “Art song” is a rather prissy term, but we could have done with a few to ballast a diet of old pop – French chansons, Italian canzonettas, Spanish canciones, Victor Herbert tralala. Even...

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Petite Messe Solennelle, BBC Singers, Brough, Milton Court

“A little skill, a little heart, that’s all,” wrote the 70-year-old Rossini as epigraph to his late, not so small and not always solemn mass. It’s not all, of course. This last major self-styled “sin of old age” (péché de vieillesse) stands in a...

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La donna del lago, Royal Opera

I mean, really, what is the point of Rossini? That’s actually not as stupid as it sounds. No-one has ever mistaken any of his operas for taut music-drama, and even the best of them are peculiarly difficult to pull off because without first-rate...

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The Barber of Seville, English National Opera

There is only one rule by which one should ever judge a Barber of Seville. If your eyes (and possibly also your trouser legs) aren’t moist by the time the interval arrives, you might as well leave. The last time this Jonathan Miller production was...

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La Cenerentola, Glyndebourne Festival Opera

Rossini's La Cenerentola is not an opera that I'd normally recommend to anyone with even half a brain. It takes the simple if mildly nauseating little tale of Cinderella, pads it out with parental abuse and drawn out cliffhangers, and ends in a pass...

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ENO's new 2012/13 season in full

The ENO's 2012/13 season includes premieres from Philip Glass (The Perfect American) and Michel van der Aa (Sunken Garden) and nine new productions from some of today's most iconoclastic stage directors. The Verdi bicentenary begins in the UK...

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Q&A Special: Bass Sir John Tomlinson, Part 2

A legend on the operatic stage, Sir John Tomlinson (CBE) has sung with all the major British opera companies, made countless recordings, and for sixteen years was a fixture at Bayreuth, where he performed leading roles in each of Wagner's epic works...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Byrd, Cage and Rossini

Phantasm: sumptuous in Byrd

This week's chronologically varied selection includes instrumental music written by one of the giants of Elizabethan music and a baffling, beguiling work composed by a 20th-century maverick, inspired by a visit to a Japanese garden. There's also a...

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BBC Proms: William Tell, Orchestra of the Academy of Santa Cecilia, Pappano

Rossini's William Tell has to be the most well-known unknown opera ever written. There's unlikely to be a man, woman or dog on the planet who can't whistle or bark a part of the overture. But the other four hours? What of that? One opera aficionado...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Ince, Previn, Rossini

Julia Lezhneva: Her extraordinary voice belies her youth

This week we’ve a grandiose choral work inspired by a composer’s love for the beautiful game, along with two noisily enjoyable attempts to portray physical movement in musical terms. A frighteningly young Russian soprano’s debut recital is released...

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Il Turco in Italia, Garsington Opera

Don Geronio (Geoffrey Dalton) catches Fiorilla (Rebecca Nelson) and Selim (Quirijn de Lang) in flagrante: Oo-er missus

What would opera do without the postwar British sitcom? Garsington Opera's new production of Rossini's Il Turco in Italia at Wormsley last night saw yet another opera buffa being sold to 21st-century man using the gestural language of 'Allo 'Allo...

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Juan Diego Flórez, Royal Festival Hall

We’ve all seen singers go wrong. Forgetting words, missing entries, skipping verses – it happens often enough, and is generally cause for little more than some awkward laughter and a second attempt. Never, however, have I seen a wrong entry (as ill-...

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