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Tag Archives: Opera North

Opera North’s La Bohème – Leeds Grand Theatre, Leeds

Music: Giacomo Puccini Director: Phyllida Lloyd Conductor: Renato Balsadonna Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood This Opera North’s production of Puccini’s La Bohème returns since its last showing in 2014.  This tragic opera, set to Guiseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica’s text, is based on Henry Murger’s Scènes de la vie de bohème and also his play, La Vie de bohème – collaborated with ...

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Giulio Cesare – Grand Theatre, Leeds

Composer: George Frideric Handel Libretto: Nicola Francesco Haym Director: Tim Albery Conductor: Christian Curnyn Designer: Leslie Travers Reviewer: Ron Simpson Handel’s Julius Caesar is not an early example of an opera based on Shakespeare. The full title is Giulio Cesare in Egitto and the knives out for Caesar are not in the hands of Cassius and Brutus, but of Ptolemy ...

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Opera North’s The Greek Passion – Leeds Grand Theatre, Leeds

Composer: Bohuslav Martinů Director: Christopher Alden Conductor: Garry Walker Reviewer: Dawn Smallwood Martinů’s The Greek Passion, a new production, marks the opening of Opera North’s autumn season.  Based on Nikos Kazantzakis’ text, it was written over 60 years ago and its score, albeit heavily revised, made its debut in Switzerland in 1961.  However, due to the themes’ relevance, Aleš Březina’s ...

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Byrd-Cage: The Shape of Sound – Leeds Art Gallery

Choir: Chorus of Opera North Conductor: Oliver Rundell Reviewer: Ron Simpson There are many ways in which different art forms can merge and identify with each other, from the Wagnerian concept of the Gesamtkunstwerk to people who sense music in terms of colour. So to programme a short concert by the Chorus of Opera North to fit into the Yorkshire ...

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Aida – Symphony Hall, Birmingham

Composer: Guiseppe Verdi Libretto: Antonio Ghislanzoni Director: Annabel Arden Conductor: Sir Richard Armstrong Reviewer: Tim Harding It’s easy to think of Verdi’s Aida in grandiose terms: extravagant sets, large choruses of soldiers and priests, dancers, horses and chariots.  But is that what this opera is all about?  True, the Triumphal March in Act 2 traditionally contains all these elements, but there is ...

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Aida – Bridgewater Hall, Manchester

Music: Giuseppe Verdi Libretto: Antonio Ghislanzoni Director: Annabel Arden Conductor: Sir Richard Armstrong Reviewer: Sam Lowe There couldn’t have been a better venue choice for tonight’s opera than Bridgewater Hall. The sound of music and singing effortlessly swirls around the acoustics of the auditorium. Opera North’s concert staging of Aidamixes everyone around: the performers are right at the front, followed ...

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Opera North | Aida – Leeds Town Hall

Composer: Giuseppe Verdi Libretto: Antonio Ghislanzoni Conductor: Sir Richard Armstrong Director: Annabel Arden Reviewer: Ron Simpson At 227 in the Classic FM Hall of Fame is Aida, followed by (in brackets) “includes Grand March and Celeste Aida”. That sums up the problem with the opera: its general popularity rests on the first two of four acts and, also, to an ...

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Reflections – Town Hall, Huddersfield

Orchestra: Orchestra of Opera North Conductor: Dalia Stasevska Soloist: Ana Maria Labin (soprano) Reviewer: Ron Simpson For the final concert in the Kirklees 2018-2019 season, the Orchestra of Opera North presented a programme under the title “Reflections”. Given that it started with Lutoslawski’s Musique funebre, continued with Richard Strauss’ Four Last Songs of which the final line translates as “Is ...

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