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La Bohème -The Coliseum, London

Composer: Giacomo Puccini Libretto: Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica Director: Jonathan Miller Reviewer: Maryam Philpott If the thought of Christmas trees in November and another whole month of panto, adaptations of A Christmas Carol and tinsel fills you with dread then the English National Opera’s new production of La Bohèmemay be the respite you need. While technically this tragic love story ...

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Opera North: The Merry Widow – The Lowry, Salford

Writer: Music by Franz Lehár Book/Lyrics: Victor Léon and Leo Stein  Adaptor: Kit Hesketh-Harvey and Giles Havergala Director: Giles Havergal Conductor: Martin Andre Reviewer: Dave Cunningham For their current visit to The Lowry opera North seem to have discovered relevance. A highly contemporary interpretation of Tosca is followed by a sharply up-to-date adaptation of Franz Lehár’s The Merry Widow by Kit ...

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Glyndebourne – Cinderella (Cendrillon) – Theatre Royal, Norwich

Director: Fiona Shaw Reviewer: Lu Greer The classic fairy-tale Cinderella, which tells the story of the sweet Cendrillon living in servitude to her harsh stepmother and foul stepsisters before making it to the ball with the help of her fairy godmother, is one known the world over. Jules Massenet’s fairytale which brings colourful characters, beautiful orchestral scores and enchanting melodies, is ...

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Opera North: Tosca – The Lowry, Salford

Composer: Giacomo Puccini with Librettist Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica Director: Edward Dick Conductor: Antony Hermus Reviewer: Dave Cunningham   Opera is an art form that demands grand themes and high passion to be most effective. Well, stories do not come more melodramatic than the doomed love affair between the diva Tosca and the painter Cavaradossi. Tosca (soprano Giselle Allen) lives ...

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Scottish Opera: Rigoletto – Festival Theatre, Edinburgh

Composer: Giuseppe Verdi  Librettist: Francesco Maria Piave Director: Matthew Richardson Conductor: Rumon Gamba Reviewer: Dominic Corr Seduction, tangled with an overbearing father all play a part in the turmoil of Rigoletto, the hunchbacked jester. The 1851 libretto opera has been revived by the Scottish Opera following Matthew Richardson’s 2011 production. Now, fully escaping its historical censorship, Rigoletto can serve to ...

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Passion – The Lowry, Salford

Music: Pascal Dusapin Directors: Michael McCarthy & Caroline Finn Choreography: Caroline Finn Reviewer: Peter Jacobs Passion is a 2009 opera by French composer Pascal Dusapin that adds a contemporary twist to the legend of Orpheus, presented as a work for body and voice: a Dance Opera. This is a collaboration (their first) between Music Theatre Wales and London Sinfonietta, conducted by ...

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ENO: Porgy and Bess – London Coliseum

Composer: George Gershwin Libretto: DuBose Heyward and Ira Gershwin, based on the play by DuBose and Dorothy Heyward Director: James Robinson Reviewer: Scott Matthewman There has not been much in the way of good news coming from English National Opera of late. Perhaps – just perhaps – this new production of the Gershwins’ musical crowning glory, a co-production with New ...

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DUBLIN THEATRE FESTIVAL: Bluebeard’s Castle – Gaiety Theatre, Dublin

Composer: Béla Bartók Director: Enda Walsh Conductor:  André de Ridder Reviewer: Tricia O’Beirne Béla Bartók’s opera Bluebeard’s Castle, with Libretto by Béla Balázs, was first performed in the early twentieth century and is playfully re-imagined here in director Enda Walsh’s staging, presented by the Irish National Opera with music by the RTÉ Concert Orchestra. The opera is a duet sung ...

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