Call me Russ L

End-Of-Year-Count 2014: Opera

Posted in Music by Russ L on 4 January, 2015

I thought that this was going to be a weak total, but recounting shows that I actually went to 17 this year (equalling that heady operatic golden era of 2012).

“La Traviata” by Giuseppe Verdi – Opera Up Close – Belgrade Theatre, Coventry – 21/1/14
“Boulevard Solitude” by Hans Wener Henze – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 6/3/14
“Zeppelin Dreams” by Rachael Leach – English Touring Opera & sundry local community organisations – The Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton – 21/3/14
“Anon” by Errolyn Wallen – Welsh National Opera – Newhampton Arts Centre, Wolverhampton – 25/3/14
“Khovanschina” (here “Khovanskyate: A National Enquiry”) by Modest Mussorgsky – Birmingham Opera Company/CBSO – The Freedom Tent, Cannon Hill Park, Edgbaston, Birmingham – 22/4/14
“Der Rosenkavalier” by Richard Strauss – CBSO – Symphony Hall, Birmingham – 24/5/1
“Moses Und Aron” by Arnold Schoenberg – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 18/6/14
“Nabucco” by Giuseppe Verdi – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 19/6/14
“Usher House” by Gordon Getty – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 20/6/14
“La Chute de la maison Usher” by Claude Debussy – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 20/6/14
“Götterdämmerung” by Richard Wagner – Opera North – Symphony Hall, Birmingham – 21/6/14
“Duke Bluebeard’s Castle” by Béla Bartók – CBSO – Symphony Hall, Birmingham – 2/7/14
“Ariadne Auf Naxos” by Richard Strauss – The Royal Opera – Symphony Hall, Birmingham – 6/7/14
“The Trial” by Philip Glass – Music Theatre Wales – The Rep, Birmingham – 10/11/14
“Carmen” by George Bizet – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 19/11/14
“Moses In Egypt” by Gioachino Rossini – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 21/11/14
“William Tell” by Gioachino Rossini – Welsh National Opera – The Hippodrome, Birmingham – 22/11/14

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4 Responses

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  1. Dave C***t said, on 5 January, 2015 at 7:16 am

    Thought I’d spotted you at The Trial. Any thoughts on’t? I thought I was going to a fairly normal stage adaptation with a bit of music rather than a Glass affair (the tickets were a present and I failed to check in advance), and largely thought it terrible. But I’m guessing I was missing something which was more apparent to people who were there on purpose?

  2. Russ L said, on 5 January, 2015 at 11:05 am

    You’re a busy man, you can’t be expected to look at words on tickets.

    I really enjoyed it. Although I am quite easily pleased. Silly and surreal rather than grimdark, as any fule knows Kafka should be. And your Glass-repetition-type o’thing in the score fitted with the grinding inevitability of it all, if that’s not too trite an observation.

    The Berkoff production with the wooden frames is the best staging of it that I’ve seen, though (actually the only other staging of it that I’ve seen, now that I come to think of it).

  3. Dave C***t said, on 5 January, 2015 at 2:56 pm

    In my defence, I didn’t actually see the tickets at all. But yeah, a quick google wouldn’t have hurt.

    I can see a certain surreal point to how pretentious the operatising (it’s not a word, but I’m having it!) of daft words about breakfasts seemed, but it wasn’t for me. But good, glad it worked for other people.

    I’ve only seen one other staging of anything by him, an Icelandic production of Metamorphosis a few years back with a perpendicular climbing wall vermin environment thing. That was super.

  4. Russ L said, on 5 January, 2015 at 6:21 pm

    Yes! With the two-floor stage and Cave/Ellis music and the proto-Nazism angle dialled up to 88. That one was amazing.


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