A Wounded Butterfly at Covent Garden

Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, beautiful though it is, presents issues for contemporary values; hence the current rethink of the Moshe Leiser and Patrice Caurier production.  The Royal Opera brought in Japanese…

Rouvali’s mighty and stereophonic ‘Resurrection’ closes his first season with the Philharmonia

The final concert of the Philhamonia Orchestra’s Spring-Summer season came to an end with that greatest of Mahler blockbuster symphonies, the choral ‘Resurrection’. It also marked the end of Santtu-Matias…

Thrilling Macbeth from the Grange Festival

Verdi’s operatic makeover of Shakespeare’s Scottish play was given a highly charged staging at the Grange Festival when I caught up with it on its second night.  From the Preludio’s…

Georges Bizet’s Carmen at Opera Holland Park

Carmen was the last opera I saw before the end of the world.  Not necessarily what I would have chosen; for many of my friends it was Fidelio, whose absence…

Oedipus Rex at the San Francisco Symphony

Plague infested Thebes, plague infested San Francisco. Esa Pekka Salonen has brought his Peter Sellars staged Oedipus Rex and concluding Stravinsky prayer, Symphony of Psalms, to Davis Hall. Salonen, now…

Il prigioniero: Pappano and the LSO give an exceptional performance of Luigi Dallapiccola’s opera of torture and Inquisition

When it comes to the style and essence of their music Ottorino Respighi and Luigi Dallapiccola really come from entirely different places.  Church Windows and Il prigioniero, heard side by…

Tamerlano at The Grange Festival: superb singing but somewhat staid production

One might say of Daniel Slater’s production of Handel’s Tamerlano at The Grange Festival that the staging offers nothing about which to complain and that the singing gives much to…

Lise Davidsen and Freddie De Tommaso: voices of star quality in an exceptional recital

The last couple of times I have reviewed Lise Davidsen at the Barbican – who is beginning to feel at home in this hall as Birgit Nilsson once did at…

Don Giovanni at San Francisco Opera

The crowning jewel of Mozart’s operas has arrived at the War Memorial Opera House, San Francisco Opera now completing, finally, the Covid thwarted rollout of an integrated Mozart/DaPonte trilogy.  The…

A double bill of Monteverdi and Weill at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama

The London Conservatoires frequently serve up some of the most interesting operatic fare in the capital: unusual programmes, often in eclectic pairings, presented in inventive stagings – and, of course,…