I Fagiolini: Au naturel

I Fagiolini like a ‘hook’, and they’re expert at devising one.  On this occasion it was a painting, or, rather, a series of paintings – The Four Seasons by Pieter…

Handel’s Heroes and Heroines: Mary Bevan and Barnaby Smith, Live from London

The now-familiar Live from London format was slightly revised for this recital of sinfonias, arias and duets from Handel’s oratorios and operas, titled Handel: Heroes and Heroines.  VOCES8 were represented…

A New Day: The King’s Singers, Live from London

The King’s Singers’ Live from London Summer programme was titled, optimistically, A New Day, reflecting the series’ theme of renewal and regeneration, and drawing together music ‘with a focus on…

‘All shall be well’: ORA Singers and Zeb Soanes reassure and inspire

The optimistic words of Julian of Norwich (1342-c.1417) might seem out of place in the modern world.  Yet, Mother Julian, as the English anchorite and mystic came to be known,…

VOCES8 open Live for London Summer with a sprinkle of stardust

VOCES8’s new Live from London summer festival opened in ‘sparkling’ fashion with a characteristically mixed repertoire programme, entitled Stardust.  Much was reassuringly familiar, and very welcome: the perfect blending and…

Leeds Lieder Festival: Benjamin Britten’s Five Canticles

Benjamin Britten’s five Canticles span his compositional career, from 1947 to 1974, and reflect the eclectic musical, poetic and cultural influences and idioms which he integrated into an independent expressive…

Natalya Romaniw and Iain Burnside: a wonderful lunchtime recital at Leeds Lieder 2021

Natalya Romaniw’s compelling but frustratingly foreshortened debut as Cio-Cio San at English National Opera in February 2020 was one of the last live performances I heard before the theatres of…

Covid’s Metamorphoses: an anniversary Song Gala at Wigmore Hall leads the way to hope and renewal

A programme entitled Covid’s Metamorphoses might not seem a very auspicious way to celebrate a 120th anniversary, but, curated by pianist Graham Johnson, this special Song Gala placed themes of…

Met Stars Live in Concert: Three Divas

From Four Wagnerians to Three Divas; from the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden to the 250-year-old theatre of Opéra Royal du Château de Versailles.  And, for Christine Goerke, from the opera stage…

Wagnerians Live in Concert

So, after months of serving as the immensely professional, amiable and modest host of the Metropolitan Opera’s Met Stars Live in Concert series, soprano Christine Goerke finally got her own…