Tristan und Isolde at Seattle

Seattle Opera has long championed the operas of Richard Wagner. Legendary impresarios Glynn Ross and Speight Jenkins – the latter, at 85, still cutting a dapper figure in the audience…

Halévy’s La tempesta opens the 71st Wexford Festival Opera

“Be not afeard,” Caliban reassures the comic conspirators, Stephano and Trinculo, “This isle is full of noises,/ Sounds and sweet airs that give delight and hurt not.”  Indeed, the whole…

Dialogues des Carmelites in San Francisco

Poulenc’s masterpiece (1957), Camus’ La Chute (The Fall) Nobel Prize for Literature (1957), Bernstein’s West Side Story (1957), Gian Carlo Menotti’s The Saint of Bleecker Street (1954). San Francisco Opera…

Patricia Petibon blurs musical and theatrical boundaries at Oxford Lieder

Back in August, when I spoke to Sholto Kynoch about this year’s Oxford Lieder Festival, he told me that one of the things he was most looking forward to, as…

Mid Wales Opera triumphs with Puss in Boots

Mid Wales Opera has virtually created an instruction manual for the performance of community-based opera in rural areas, shrink-wrapping works into spaces that rarely enjoy professional presentation.  Its month-long SmallStages…

Revisiting familar forms and formats at Oxford Leider

If regular concertgoers thought that they knew what to expect from a lute-song recital or a lieder programme, the second evening of this year’s Oxford Lieder Festival would certainly have…

Battle Cry: Helen Charlston and Toby Carr at Oxford Lieder

The ‘Battle Cry’ presented by mezzo-soprano Helen Charlston and theorbist Toby Carr in this early- evening Oxford Lieder recital in the Sheldonian Theatre was a distinctively female one, the programme…

Oxford Lieder Festival: Opening Night camaraderie and conviviality

Friendship in Song is the theme of the 21st Oxford Lieder Festival, and the Opening Night recital in the Sheldonian Theatre certainly offered an evening of camaraderie and conviviality, as…

Idomeneo at the Met

Thursday night performances of lesser-known works often spark memorable Met moments. So it was last week, at the revival of Mozart’s Idomeneo. The house was far from full and a…

A dark, sombre Tamerlano from English Touring Opera

The Mongol conqueror, Tamerlane (1336-1405), doesn’t have a good reputation.  Also known as Timur, this son of a nomadic shepherd was a masterful military leader and tactician but is most…