Category Archives: Opera

McBurney paints The Rake’s Progress onto a blank canvas in Aix

Stravinsky: The Rake’s Progress **** Théâtre de l’Archevêché, Aix-en-Provence A blank sheet of paper can intimidate or inspire. The fresh page can stifle a writer, trapped in the glare of expectation, or can encourage daring originality, be it words in … Continue reading

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Carmen as therapy: Tcherniakov challenges clichés but is stumped in Aix

Bizet: Carmen ** Grand Théâtre de Provence, Aix-en-Provence, 4th July 2017 Love may well be a rebellious bird, but that’s as nothing to maverick director Dmitri Tcherniakov. In his beloved Russian repertoire he displays genius – his recent Snow Maiden in Paris fully … Continue reading

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Boesmans’ dark Pinocchio opens Festival d’Aix-en-Provence

Boesmans: Pinocchio *** Grand Théâtre de Provence, Aix-en-Provence, 3rd July 2017 If I wrote that I loved Philippe Boesmans’ Pinocchio, my nose may grow a little. Commissioned to open the 2017 Festival d’Aix en Provence, Boesmans’ opera finds the 81-year-old composer in … Continue reading

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John Copley directs a peach of an Albert Herring for Grange Festival

Britten: Albert Herring **** Grange Festival, 25th June 2017 With a combined age of 161 years, John Copley and Steuart Bedford certainly bring ample experience to Grange Festival’s new production of Britten’s Albert Herring. As a youngster, Copley played the apprentice in Peter Grimes, while his … Continue reading

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A bronze-toned lion of Venice: Kaufmann debuts as Otello at Covent Garden

Verdi: Otello **** The Royal Opera, 21st June 2017 After all the hype, he sang. Speculation about whether Jonas Kaufmann would even turn up for rehearsals to sing his first Otello have kept both press and social media frenzied for months. Even … Continue reading

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