sat 08/08/2020

Opera Features

theartsdesk Christmas Quiz

ismene Brown

You're going to test your stomach and sweet temper to the maximum today - test your brain and memory too with our monster quiz about the arts covered by theartsdesk in 2011. Every artform is represented here in 12 dozen questions. Settle down between courses, films and presents and see how many you and your near and dear can do.

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theartsdesk Christmas Quiz - Answers

theartsdesk

Here are the answers to our monster Christmas arts quiz of 12 dozen questions on the year past, as seen by theartsdesk writers. There are clues in all the questions in the main quiz page. If you don't want to know the answers just yet till you've grappled with them, close this page now.

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Christmas on theartsdesk: Brainteasers, Bran Tub, and the Best of 2011

theartsdesk

Any day now most of us will be hunkering down and for the most part drawing a curtain about the world outside. Before that happens, we’d like to tell you about theartsdesk’s plans for Christmas and the New Year.

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theartsdesk in Wexford: Wexford Festival Opera's 60th Anniversary Season

alexandra Coghlan

I’m within 20 yards of Wexford Opera House when I stop a couple for directions, convinced that my map is some sort of Irish practical joke. Approached down a narrow and frankly rather unpromising side street, from the exterior Wexford Opera House does a very good impression of a row of terraced houses.

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theartsdesk in Bayreuth: Wagner in the Laboratory

stephen Walsh

Richard Wagner has probably only himself to blame if his operas have become a laboratory for the testing-to-destruction of the intellectual preoccupations of that Opera Führer of our time, the stage director. Wagner it was, after all, who transferred the mythic concept of concealed meaning to the opera house: Wagner who recreated legend as psycho-social allegory, and made musical narrative the handmaiden of philosophy and political ideology.

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theartsdesk at the Buxton Festival: An Opera a Day

philip Radcliffe

An opera a day keeps boredom at bay. There’s no danger of boredom in Buxton in mid-July. Set 1,000ft up in the Derbyshire hills, on the edge of the Peak District, and blessed with an Edwardian gem of an opera house, the old spa town is now well established with its own place on the festival map. And when the sun shines on it, as it did for most of the first day, it’s a picture.

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theartsdesk in Göttingen: Handel With an Umlaut

David Nice

Georg Friedrich Händel of Halle probably never came here. Other great men certainly did: long after the official foundation of Göttingen's Georg August University in 1734 - the year in which the composer wrote a masterpiece, Ariodante, in another spa town, Tunbridge Wells - would-be or successful students included Goethe, Heine, the Brothers Grimm, Schopenhauer and Bismarck. It's hardly a Baroque town, either, though its beauties are manifold.

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theartsdesk in Clonter: The Opera Farm

philip Radcliffe

Deep in rural Cheshire farmland, music is in the air. It’s not the music of the spheres from the Jodrell Bank radio telescope nearby, nor even the sound of the birds and the bleating of the lambs nearby. It is the music of human voices at work on scales and operatic arias. The 250-acre farm is Clonter, where for years people used to come to be entertained in the barn while picnicking amid bales of straw. Now the barn’s converted into an opera theatre - "the Glyndebourne of the North".

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Year Out/Year In: Classical Music and Opera

theartsdesk

Earlier this month, George Osborne, Vince Cable and Jeremy Hunt were spotted in a Royal Opera House box surveying the country's most expensive artistic patrimony. What they thought - and how they and the Arts Council might wield their axe - will change the musical landscape of Britain forever.

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Bah Humbug: Richard Wagner - banish him from the stage

Igor Toronyi-Lalic

Now that The X Factor's finally over, can we please get back to heaping opprobrium on the only Wagner that really deserves it? In the coming year opera houses around the world will be deciding whether to temporarily bankrupt themselves in 2013 to celebrate the composer's centenary. Opera Australia have announced a £10 million Ring Cycle.

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