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Don Giovanni – The Grand, Leeds

Music: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Libretto: Lorenzo da Ponte Director: Alessandro Talevi Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood Completing the bill of the Fatal Passions season this winter is Mozart’s Don Giovanni.  It is one of Mozart’s most popular operas, and the audience has the opportunity to re-evaluate the title character, Don Giovanni. He is particularly relevent today, especially with what has come to light recently via ...

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Carmen 1808 – Union Theatre, London

Book and Lyrics: Phil Willmott Director: Phil Wilmott Music: Georges Bizet Arranger: Teddy Clements Reviewer: Karl O'Doherty The original opera is a relatively bleak production. Death, loneliness and danger stalk throughout the love story at its core. This vibrant reimagining manages to somehow increase the shadow of violence and yet come out as a vibrant, energetic and charismatic show. This ...

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Tosca – Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff

Director: Michael Blakemore Revival Director: Benjamin Davis Conductor: Carlo Rizzi Reviewer: Emily Pearce As one of the genre’s most empathetic composers, Puccini’s Tosca has everything one might want and from high opera and melodrama. An opera about an opera singer trying to defend her politically doomed lover as the state rebels; Tosca is a story steeped in betrayal, murder and ...

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Un ballo in maschera – The Grand, Leeds

Music: Giuseppe Verdi Libretto: Antonio Somma Director: Tim Albery Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood Un ballo in maschera (A Masked Ball) is Opera North’s first ever staging of this opera, forming part of the Fatal Passions season this winter.  Verdi’s opera is not as well known compared to his other works such as Aida, La Traviata and Rigoletto, however, it gives the ...

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Madama Butterfly – The Grand, Leeds

Music: Giacomo Puccini Libretto: Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi llica Director: Tim Albery Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood Madama Butterfly is part of the Fatal Passions season which Opera North is presenting this winter.  This production is a revival of Puccini’s well-known opera and its powerful and passionate music speaks for its tragic emotions.  Opera North has previously staged this production, but this ...

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Hamlet (Glyndebourne) – Theatre Royal, Plymouth

Director: Neil Armfield Composer: Brett Dean Librettist: Matthew Jocelyn Reviewer: Helen Tope Hamlet seems tailor-made for opera. A story of loyalty and revenge, it has all the core components. To amplify Shakespeare’s play into the larger-than-life dynamics needed for opera, nerves of steel are required. Too little, and the opera falls flat. Too much, and you lose the subtlety of ...

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Eugene Onegin – Arcola Theatre, London

Writer: Robin Norton-Hale Composer: Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Director: Lucy Bradley Reviewer: Karl O'Doherty Dedication to detail and a commitment to creative re-invention have marked out OperaUpClose’s productions over the last few years. The trait continues here - tackling Tchaikovsky’s grand-scale take on a Pushkin story. Robin Norton-Hale’s new version nips, tucks and tailors the original, leaving behind the essence of ...

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Hamlet – Milton Keynes Theatre

Libretto: Matthew Jocelyn  Music: Brett Dean Director: Neil Armfield Reviewer: Maggie Constable The disturbed, nay tormented, Hamlet, eponymous hero of Glyndebourne’s acclaimed opera, seeks revenge for his beloved father’s death and so begins one of the most infamous Shakespearean tragedies of all time at Milton Keynes Theatre tonight. It is worse still when poor, beleaguered Hamlet discovers the culprit of the King ...

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