Proms Hail Bernstein

Proms Hail Bernstein

Several of the Proms have celebrated the American composer Leonard Bernstein in his centenary. Nothing has been more rapturously received than Bernstein’s musical West Side Story performed at the halfway weekend by the John Wilson Orchestra under the founder-conductor...
Jakub Józef Orliński, Wigmore Hall, 13 June 2018

Jakub Józef Orliński, Wigmore Hall, 13 June 2018

by Fiona Hook Polish countertenor Jakub Józef Orliński is perhaps most famous for the YouTube clip, viewed over a million times, in which he sings Vivaldi in cutoffs and trainers. He’s also a champion breakdancer and looks like a more cheerful version of...
Proms off like the Clappers

Proms off like the Clappers

By Rick Jones Oh for goodness’ sake. The Proms begin and all anyone can talk about is applause in the wrong place. The audience clapped the individual planets of the Solar System instead of waiting for Neptune at the end of Holst’s suite on opening night. Pluto was...
L’incoronazione di Poppea, Longborough Festival Opera

L’incoronazione di Poppea, Longborough Festival Opera

Victims of love As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods: but in Longborough Festival Opera’s production of Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea, it’s the girls you have to watch. Love, Fortune and Virtue – the mismatched trio of allegorical figures who provide...
L’Ange de Nisida

L’Ange de Nisida

Recording angel Donizetti would have been tickled pink to hear Sir Mark Elder and the orchestra of the Royal Opera giving the world premiere of his opera semiseria. Elder has spent years championing little-known bel canto works, recording nine of them for Opera Rara,...
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....