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,…

Garsington Opera: Così fan tutte

Dismissed by Beethoven and Wagner, it has taken nearly two centuries for Così fan tutte to emerge from society’s censor and for Mozart’s genius for expressing human nature through sublime…

Bampton Classical Opera 2022: Handel’s Clori, Tirsi e Fileno

This autumn Bampton Classical Opera will be giving performances of Handel’s Clori, Tirsi e Fileno, one of his most extended and loveliest cantatas, at venues in Sussex, Oxfordshire and Surrey.  Also known…

Monteverdi’s Orfeo at Garsington Opera

What is most striking about John Caird’s new production of Monteverdi’s Orfeo at Garsington Opera is the extent to which it reminds us that the humanist theories informing the aesthetic…

Kathryn Rudge sings an exquisite Sea Pictures beside Vasily Petrenko’s safe Mahler Sixth

The coupling of Elgar’s Sea Pictures and Mahler’s Sixth Symphony is not an obvious one. One tangible link is that Mahler conducted Sea Pictures in the final year of his…

Hamlet at the Met

Today, with post-romanticism and minimalism in decline, most new operas fall into one of two categories. They are either “popularist” or “modernist.” Populist operas are crossover works. Building on Gershwin’s…

Missed chances and haunting memories: Eugene Onegin at Opera Holland Park

If the first night of Julia Burbach’s production of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at Opera Holland Park marked the start of London’s summer opera season, it certainly didn’t mark the start…

A gripping Siegfried at Longborough Festival Opera

There’s something wholly satisfying when an opera is allowed to breathe its own magic without overworked directorial interference.  This new production of Siegfried – originally planned for 2021 – forms…

Chelsea Opera Group present a superb Andrea Chénier at the Southbank

The 2022 summer opera season has been getting well and truly underway this week, with first nights at Opera Holland Park (Eugene Onegin) and Garsington (Orfeo), following Glyndebourne’s production of…

Samson et Dalila at the Royal Opera House

To describe Saint-Saëns’s Samson et Dalila as ‘old-fashioned’ doesn’t seem controversial.  The French composer’s score harks back to the past with its allusions to Handelian fugue and Bachian chorale, betraying…