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Recently in Performances

Les Indes galantes, Bavarian State Opera

Baroque opera has long been an important part of the Bavarian State Opera’s programming. And beyond the company itself, Munich’s tradition stretches back many years indeed: Kubelík’s Handel with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, for instance.

Don Giovanni, Bavarian State Opera

All told, this was probably the best Don Giovanni I have seen and heard. Judging opera performances - perhaps we should not be ‘judging’ at all, but let us leave that on one side - is a difficult task: there are so many variables, at least as many as in a play and a concert combined, but then there is the issue of that ‘combination’ too.

A dance to life in Munich’s Indes galantes

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Il barbiere di Siviglia, Glyndebourne Festival Opera at the Proms

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‘This is the way the world ends. Not with a bang but a whimper.’ It is, perhaps, a line quoted too often; yet, even though it may not have been entirely accurate on this occasion, it came to my mind. Its accuracy might be questioned in several respects.

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Nice, July 14, and then . . .

J.S. Bach’s cerebral Art of the Fugue in Aix, Verdi’s massive Requiem in Orange, Ibn al-Muqaffa’ ‘s fable of the camel, jackal, wolf and crow, Sophocles’ blind Oedipus Rex and the Bible’s triumphant Psalm No. 150 in Aix.

Jette Parker Young Artists Summer Performance

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Prom 2: Boris Godunov, ROH

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First Night of the Proms 2016

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Il trionfo del tempo e del disinganno in Aix

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OPERA TODAY ARCHIVES »

Performances

24 Mar 2005

Parsifal Gets Poor Reception in Berlin

A controversial new production of Wagner’s “punk” Parsifal, by Bernd Eichinger, film-maker and writer of Downfall, provoked outrage when it was premiered in Berlin last Saturday. Here he defends his production. A lot of critics complained that it was staged too close to the orchestra. But that is not a failure – that is exactly what I wanted to do. In a Wagner opera, you have to understand that there are more than 100 musicians; it is a big orchestra, big music. In order that the singers can really be appreciated you have to bring the action forward, closer to the audience. If you put them too far away in the distance of the stage you hear less.


Hanno Müller-Brachmann as Amfortas (Photo: Monika Rittershaus)

Kein Gral weit und breit

Buhkonzert in der Staatsoper: Bernd Eichingers Bühnendebüt "Parsifal" ist müdes Stehtheater

Von Klaus Geitel [Berliner Morgenpost, 21 Mar 05]

Noch nie gab es im Entrée zur Staatsoper ein derartiges Photographengedrängel. Die Kameraleute boxten sich beinahe um die besseren Positionen. Und das alles bei der Premiere des "Parsifal". Es war, als habe unversehens Hollywood die Produktion übernommen. Dabei war doch bloss die Erstlingsregie von Bernd Eichinger in den heiligen Hallen der Oper angesagt.

Click here for remainder of article.


Punk Parsifal provokes outrage in Berlin

Krysia Diver in Stuttgart [The Guardian, 22 Mar 05]

It is one of the world's great opera houses, used to being filled by some of music's finest voices.

But the sound ringing around the Staatsoper in Berlin last weekend was of a different sort.

Click here for remainder of article.


Brust, Bauch, Helm, Speer

Von Eleonore Bünning [FAZ, 21 Mar 05]

21. März 2005 Als "Winterbayreuth" hat sich die Lindenoper in Berlin schon oft verkleidet, nicht erst seit den grossen Kupfer-Barenboim-Wagnerfestivals der neunziger Jahre. An diesem Abend trägt sie den Titel zu Recht. Die neue "Parsifal"-Produktion, die fortan im Spielplan die zwar langweilige, aber regiehandwerklich superkorrekte Inszenierung von Harry Kupfer aus dem Jahr 1992 ersetzen soll, tritt auf wie ein Gegenentwurf zur schrillen Bayreuther "Parsifal"Premiere des vorigen Sommers.

Click here for remainder of article.


They booed? That's great!

[The Guardian, 23 Mar 05]

A controversial new production of Wagner's "punk" Parsifal, by Bernd Eichinger, film-maker and writer of Downfall, provoked outrage when it was premiered in Berlin last Saturday. Here he defends his production.

A lot of critics complained that it was staged too close to the orchestra. But that is not a failure - that is exactly what I wanted to do. In a Wagner opera, you have to understand that there are more than 100 musicians; it is a big orchestra, big music. In order that the singers can really be appreciated you have to bring the action forward, closer to the audience. If you put them too far away in the distance of the stage you hear less.

Click here for remainder of article.


Parsifal, Staatsoper, Berlin

By Shirley Apthorp [Financial Times, 22 Mar 05]

"Can we have your liver?" the Knights of the Holy Grail ask Amfortas. "But I'm using it!" the king protests. To no avail. Resigned, he reaches into his torso and produces a palpitating organ. Just in time for Mass!

Click here for remainder of article.

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