tue 28/01/2020

Players of the Royal Opera House Orchestra, Pappano, Cadogan Hall | reviews, news & interviews

Players of the Royal Opera House Orchestra, Pappano, Cadogan Hall

Players of the Royal Opera House Orchestra, Pappano, Cadogan Hall

Intimate Wagner charms, but Schoenberg's miniMahler can't replace the real thing

'Spring's peaceful message', the visual equivalent of the Chinese poetry which inspired Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde

What a versatile master is the Royal Opera’s resident dynamo Antonio Pappano. On Saturday night, he was in the Covent Garden pit getting big-band sounds and tender elegies from the whole orchestra in Turnage’s Anna Nicole. And here he was again, moving from a surprisingly fine score to a great one, the shadow-of-mortality approach to Chinese poetry that is Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde, albeit in its ingenious chamber reduction by Schoenberg. Oh, and with the small detail of a mezzo’s ultimate challenge being faced by a baritone.

Eclipsing the so-whats of the first work and the unavoidable disappointments of the song-symphony's transcription was a perfect Siegfried Idyll

Share this article


I can't imagine Vogt being anything but aptly refined as he was for us at the Met in New York a few years back as Lohengrin.

Interesting you say that, because I was discussing exactly the question of Vogt's refinement with one of my opera class students this afternoon. She's a huge Vogt fan and had to admit she was very disappointed. It just wasn't very committed or polished. But she assures me he is indeed a wonderful Lohengrin. We can't imagine his Lieder singing on these terms.

Add comment

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?


Get a weekly digest of our critical highlights in your inbox each Thursday!

Simply enter your email address in the box below

View previous newsletters