The best news about the Met’s eleven-year-old Jonathan Miller
production of Le Nozze di Figaro is that it has been restaged by
Gregory Keller, more tautly spun, many elegant jokes or character moments
inserted, several idiocies discarded and with plenty of room remaining for
singers with a flair for it (such as Luca Pisaroni and Isabel Leonard) to
invent comic business of their own.
Sir Peter Hall created this production of Otello at Chicago Lyric Opera in 2001.
ENO did not exactly ‘import a choir of Heathens’ to encourage the Shaws of this world to ‘hasten’ to its version of ‘Messiah’ ‘if only to witness the delight of the public and the discomfiture of the critics,’ the contribution of ‘Heathens’ in musical terms being limited to representing the populace of an initially grey Britain (or so I assume) but for every critic who was discomfited — most of us — there were hundreds of audience members who loved it, so it’s fairly safe to predict a considerable hit.