The Turn of the Screw

Neil Fisher at Glyndebourne [Times Online, 24 October 2006]
The first thing to say about Jonathan Kentís new production of The Turn of the Screw is that it isnít scary. The second thing to say is that this opera probably doesnít need to be ó unlike the Henry James novella on which it is based. In Brittenís world the two ghosts that haunt the Governess and her young charges, Miles and Flora, occupy ambiguous ground. Should she confront them? Does she even need to? In Kentís mind the battle lines are fuzzy. Kate Royalís youthful Governess is no Victorian tragedienne, but she and her household come from the cosy world of 1950s domesticity. Here family values take precedence, the friendly housekeeper, Mrs Grose, does the vacuuming, and children are allowed to be children.