Iolanthe, English National Opera

Iolanthe, English National Opera

Fairy bad by Tom Sutcliffe English National Opera has had mixed experience with Gilbert & Sullivan – apart from Jonathan Miller’s never-fading Mikado brilliantly (and very distinctively) designed by Stefanos Lazaridis. Who now remembers Ken Russell’s...
Un ballo in maschera, Opera North, Leeds

Un ballo in maschera, Opera North, Leeds

By Tom Sutcliffe Who is to blame for the less than wonderful launch of Opera North’s latest Verdi? – the marvellous Un ballo in maschera, with its unconsummated central love affair, superstition and violent politics. Richard Farnes is widely accepted as a major...
Pooh, the bear that delights young and old

Pooh, the bear that delights young and old

There is an enchanted place in the V&A, a place where wonder is being created. From the moment you even look for information on the website and find your cursor has become a swarm of honey bees, the Victoria & Albert’s Winnie-the-Pooh: exploring a classic is...
La forza del destino, Welsh National Opera

La forza del destino, Welsh National Opera

The most startling aspect of WNO’s account of Verdi’s tale of doomed love is a wicked fairy. As though moonlighting from the Sleeping Beauty, Justina Gringyte participates in the overture beating her drum major-style mace on the ground in time to Verdi’s...