tue 22/08/2017

Royal Opera

Jette Parker Young Artists Summer Performance, Royal Opera review - vocal promise, poor stagecraft

They get to work with the best music and language coaches in the business. They make their mark in small parts throughout the Royal Opera season and showcase their art more prominently at the end of it, proving to the world that there are major...

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Mitridate, Re di Ponto, Royal Opera review - Crowe and costumes light up pointless revival

Why stage a stiff opera about half-frozen royals by a not-yet-divine Mozartino? The best Mitridate really deserves is one of those intimate concert performances with brilliant young singers at which Ian Page's Classical Opera excels. Yet this is the...

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Otello, Royal Opera review — Kaufmann makes a pretty Moor

Recorded on disc, this cast would be extraordinary for much of the time — to look at, not so much. Royal Opera conductor Antonio Pappano lured Jonas Kaufmann to London for his first attempt on the Everest of tenor roles, and with so many recent...

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Madama Butterfly, Royal Opera

"È un'immensa pietà" - "it's heartbreaking," rather than "it's a huge pity" - sings consul Sharpless of "Butterfly" Cio-Cio San's fatal belief that her American husband will return to her. Heartbreak is what we expected from Ermonela Jaho after her...

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Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Royal Opera

Recent British-based productions have taken Wagner's paean to creativity, the reconciliation of tradition and the individual talent, at face value. Graham Vick's long-serving Covent Garden colourfest, with its brilliant staging of the night brawl;...

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Adriana Lecouvreur, Royal Opera

Adriana Lecouvreur deserves to be better known. The opera has a toe-hold in the repertoire, with occasional appearances, usually as a showcase for the soprano in the title role. Its composer, Francesco Cilea, is known for little else, but the opera...

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La Traviata, Royal Opera

It takes some pretty special casting to spice up Richard Eyre’s Royal Opera regular, currently returning for its 14th revival (with a 15th on the cards later this year). And that’s exactly what was on the bill here, with house debuts from both Joyce...

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Written on Skin, Royal Opera

There’s a passage in Martin Crimp’s impeccable libretto for Written on Skin that describes a page of illuminated manuscript. The ink, he tells us, stays forever wet – alive with moist, fleshy, indecent human reality rather than dried into decorous...

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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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Der Rosenkavalier - Cast 2, Royal Opera

Fiftysomething may well be the new 32, the age Strauss and Hofmannsthal made the central figure of the Marschallin in their "comedy for music" Der Rosenkavalier. Hearts and minds no doubt still move with Renée Fleming, senior doyenne of the role in...

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Der Rosenkavalier, Royal Opera

Der Rosenkavalier is an opera of thresholds. Characters are caught between states – girlhood and marriage, lover and lover-no-more, woman and whatever lies beyond sexuality and desirability – while around them a city and a nation are also poised on...

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Manon Lescaut, Royal Opera

Jonathan Kent’s Manon Lescaut is back for a first revival at Covent Garden. It’s a gaudy affair, and seems calculated to provoke. But there are some interesting ideas here, and the musical standards remain high, even from the lesser-known names of...

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