King Arthur, St John’s, Smith Square

King Arthur, St John’s, Smith Square

Brexcalibur by Robert Thicknesse Who will write the King Arthur for another fractured age? Purcell’s sweet pageant is unlikely to serve as a rallying point, I fear. But that’s surely what it was in 1691, as England and Britain began a long climb out of a half-century...
Così fan tutte, Classical Opera, Cadogan Hall

Così fan tutte, Classical Opera, Cadogan Hall

Growing pains by Robert Thicknesse I confess I wasn’t expecting huge things from Ian Page and Classical Opera’s Così. Nice cast, for sure, but Page isn’t (despite his unswerving devotion to the composer) the greatest Mozart conductor, and his orchestra is only a bit...
L’elisir d’amore, Glyndebourne

L’elisir d’amore, Glyndebourne

Potent potion Pleasing crowds since 2007, Annabel Arden’s sunny production of Donizetti’s perfect sentimental comedy runs around the country on tour before returning to the main festival again next year. I guess it will run for ever, and why not? – really it’s an...
Agrippina, Royal Opera House

Agrippina, Royal Opera House

Mommie dearest By Paul Levy Among my regrets is that I am old enough to have seen and heard Maria Callas perform at Covent Garden, but young enough at the time to feel I could not afford the tickets. It goes some way to make up for this lapse that I have seen Joyce...
Romantic affinities

Romantic affinities

Brahms and Rachmaninov: the acceptable face of conservative programming? These two composers, each representing his own kind of retro-chic, make for a nice balance of sensual and intellectual, a celebration of the Romantic orchestra, of virtuosity and earnestness....