Ariadne auf Naxos, Longborough Opera

Ariadne auf Naxos, Longborough Opera

“Is there no ‘beyond?’/ Are we already there?” Ariadne asks towards the end of Ariadne auf Naxos. At the opening night, conductor Anthony Negus and the Longborough Orchestra were conveying exactly that sense of having suddenly stumbled across new and unexpected joys....
Pelleas et Melisande, Glyndebourne

Pelleas et Melisande, Glyndebourne

Road to nowhere by Tom Sutcliffe Self-referential production concepts have become tediously common at Glyndebourne over the years. The very high standing of Britain’s oldest and most distinguished opera festival no doubt makes it hard totally to avoid...
The Lodger, Bremerhaven State Theatre

The Lodger, Bremerhaven State Theatre

Undead By Tom Sutcliffe Phyllis Tate’s 1960 opera has not deserved the neglect into which it has fallen. Will the current claims about advancing the status of women composers actually mean anything? Tate was married to Alan Frank who ran OUP’s music list for 21 years...
Capriccio, Garsington Opera

Capriccio, Garsington Opera

No contest By Robert Thicknesse It’s a legal requirement these days to preface any discussion of Richard Strauss’s final opera with snarky comments on its wartime composition in Munich. Sure, it seems a bit odd to us now to have premiered this whimsical...
Roméo et Juliette, Grange Park Opera

Roméo et Juliette, Grange Park Opera

Juliette bravo “Dramatic art is the art of a portraitist,” Gounod wrote in his Mémoires d’un artiste. “It must translate characters as a painter depicts a face or an attitude.” It is a curious proposition, indeed it might be thought to raise more questions...
Lohengrin, Royal Opera House

Lohengrin, Royal Opera House

One-sword wonder By Lucien Jenkins One of the first decisions in any opera production is the setting. For Wagner, the old-school approach was to tog up in faux Dark Age armour. The epoch-making Chéreau-Boulez centenary Bayreuth Ring was famously costumed for Wagner’s...