fri 23/02/2018

Rimsky-Korsakov

Baráti, Lyddon, LPO, Jurowski, RFH review - Stravinsky's bright but derivative beginnings

"You have to start somewhere," Debussy is reported to have said at the 1910 premiere of The Firebird. Which, at least, is a very good "somewhere" for Stravinsky, shot through with flashes of the personality to come. The Symphony in E flat of two...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Soprano Aida Garifullina

There are certain roles where you’re lucky to catch one perfect incarnation in a lifetime. I thought I'd never see a soprano as Natasha in Prokofiev's War and Peace equal to Yelena Prokina, Valery Gergiev’s choice for Graham Vick’s 1991 production....

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The Snow Maiden, Opera North

Late January, and the soul longs for winter's end. Which is why Rimsky-Korsakov's bittersweet fairy story about the fragile daughter of Spring and Frost whose heart will melt when she discovers true love, allowing the sun to bring back warmth to...

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The Mighty Handful, ROH Orchestra, Pappano, Royal Opera House

What fun it must have been to attend any of the St Petersburg Free Music School concerts during the second half of the 19th century. Balakirev, idiosyncratic mentor of the group briefly together as the "Mighty Handful", and his acolytes – Borodin,...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Dutilleux, Rimsky-Korsakov, Roger Woodward

 Dutilleux: Symphony no 1, Tout un monde lontain, The Shadows of Time Xavier Phillips (cello), Seattle Symphony/Ludovic Morlot (Seattle Symphony Media)As symphonic openings go, this has to be one of the subtlest and most mysterious, a pizzicato...

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theartsdesk in Paris: San Francisco Ballet 1

In 2005, San Francisco Ballet were the first company to visit Paris as part of a new summer dance festival, Les Étés de la Danse. Helped not only by this auspicious start, but by the obvious demand for live dance in a month traditionally barren for...

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Diaghilev Festival Gala, London Coliseum

Bakst’s harem drapes and Roerich’s smoking, steaming Polovtsian camp may not have had the most lavish of recreations. But the rest of this homage to Diaghilev shone with an exuberance and even a precision one would not have thought possible from...

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The Golden Cockerel, Diaghilev Festival, London Coliseum

Rimsky-Korsakov’s bizarre final fantasy, puffing up Pushkin's short verse-tale to unorthodox proportions, has done better in Britain than any of his other operatic fairy-tales. That probably has something to do with its appearance in Paris, six...

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Crabb, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Hrůša, Barbican Hall

There are always risks involved in the uncompromising side of the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s family-friendly concerts. Succulent slices of fox-meat in the form of a suite from Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen gave the kids a nourishing start, and...

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No go Glasgow's SNO Maiden

The Royal Scottish National Orchestra's Glasgow concert tonight has had to be cancelled because of what my Scots godson, in far less extreme conditions down in the Borders, once described as "horrifying wind and rain". The programme? The Suite from...

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Olga Borodina, Dmitri Yefimov, Barbican Hall

In Italian opera, where lustrous Verdi mezzos are rare indeed, Olga Borodina tends to a first-the-music-then-the-words approach. In Russian song, the sole focus of last night's Barbican recital until the second encore, her classy, naturally...

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The Metamorphosis, Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House

My acid test for whether a show’s worth going to is, specifically, whether it was worth driving 27 miles into town and 27 miles back, spending, say, three or sometimes four hours travelling to see something 80 minutes long. Not often is it worth...

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