120 Posts
Contrasting Old and New: Vanessa Wagner on La Dolce Volta
In her recent recording for La Dolce Volta, pianist Vanessa Wagner played a piano recital of the music of one 18th century and one early 19th century masters: W.A. Mozart (1756-1791) and Muzio Clementi (1752-1832). She played the recital on
Read more
A lusty and lugubrious Lucia di Lammermoor at Royal Opera House
When the Royal Opera House premièred Katie Mitchell’s production of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor in spring 2016, the management posted numerous warnings about the on-stage sex and violence. Few contemporary directors, not even the provocative exponents of the more ambitious
Read more
William Kentridge turns Salzburg’s new Wozzeck into a Gesamtkunstwerk
Salzburg doesn’t fear difficult opera. And Alban Berg’s Wozzeck certainly qualifies as one. Infrequently performed on more conventional stages because of the inaccessible music and distressing storyline, Salzburg embraced it wholeheartedly, both musically and visually.
Read more
Salzburg: Giuseppe Verdi’s Aida by Shirin Neshat
The Salzburg music festival’s new director Markus Hinterhaeuser boldly outlined the motto of this year’s program as ‘power’: “strategies of power, its disgraces and horrors, but also with the ability to forgive.” With this bold declaration Hinterhaeuser possibly tried to
Read more
Feather light and forgettable
Mozart’s Don Giovanni at the Aix-en-Provence Festival 2017
There was little to commend the new production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni at the Aix-en-Provence Festival 2017. The stage set lacked any recognizable theme, and the intermittently raised and dropped metallic curtains offered no discernible purpose. Ditto on the costumes
Read more
Paris, Texas & Pearls
Wim Wenders directs Bizet’s Pearl Fishers in Berlin
George Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers (Les Pȇcheurs de Perles) is a work of such notorious boredom that is it easy to understand the decision of the Berlin Staatsoper (still in its temporary home in the Schiller Theater) to spice it
Read more
Jonas Kaufmann’s Otello at Royal Opera House
The hottest day in the United Kingdom in nearly 30 years. The day of the Queen’s Speech. And the hottest ticket in town was for opening night of the Royal Opera House’s new production of Giuseppe Verdi’s Otello, featuring German
Read more
‘Composed’ a documentary film by John Beder
Performance Anxiety – for many musicians and performers it’s the fear which cannot, must not, speak its name, and together with injury and illness, it’s a major taboo. We don’t discuss anxiety because we’re not supposed to feel it. As
Read more