English Touring Opera presents a powerful pairing of Tippett and Shostakovich

Michael Tippett’s 1943 cantata for tenor and piano, Boyhood’s End, was one of first vocal works composed specifically for Peter Pears and Benjamin Britten.  It was first performed on 5th…

A Choral Odyssey with The Sixteen

2020 marked the 20th anniversary of The Sixteen’s annual Choral Pilgrimage tour.  In 2000, founder and director Harry Christophers instituted the Choral Pilgrimage, taking the ensemble to English cathedrals from York to…

Il tabarro: Marek Janowski and the Dresden Philharmonic continue their series of verismo operas

During the 1880s and 1890s, Italian publishers were making a concerted effort to find a successor to Giuseppe Verdi who, however, remained a towering force in Italian operatic life. The…

English Touring Opera perform Tippett and Britten

Covid-19 brought English Touring Opera’s Spring 2020 tour of Giulio Cesare, Così fan tutte and the St John Passion to an untimely halt, but the company got back on the…

Mozart’s Betulia Liberata: Christophe Rousset and Les Talens Lyriques

Metastasio must have topped the charts in Padua in the early 1770s.  Performances of settings of his libretto Betulia Liberata seem to have abounded, with the Bohemian Josef Mysliveček’s account,…

The 2020 Kathleen Ferrier Award Final

Regular Opera Today readers will know that the annual Kathleen Ferrier Award Final is a keenly anticipated event in my musical year.  This year the Competition’s progress, inevitably, was somewhat…

The Royal Opera House Christmas Concert

Lockdowns and homeworking have made pyjamas the sartorial style of choice during 2020, so who would be surprised that director Dan Dooner decided to turn the Royal Opera House’s Christmas…

Messe de Minuit: I Fagiolini

Long, long ago,Oh! so long agoChrist was born in BethlehemTo heal the world’s woe. On Christmas Eve in 1940, while he was a prisoner of war at Oflag VII C…

VOCES8 sing Winter Tales

VOCES8’s concerts often resemble a Christmas tin of Quality Street chocolates – there’s something for everyone, and ‘favourites’ abound.  But, the ensemble’s range – and ambition – is impressive; during…

John Sheppard’s Media vita: The Choir of New College, Oxford

Modern scholarship directed at the English Reformation composer John Sheppard (c.1515-58) has come a long way since Peter le Huray’s research during the 1960s and David Wulstan’s pioneering performances a…