Opera and Classical Reviews

Steven Isserlis @ West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge

by William Norris

This was an exhilarating concert – even the five curtain calls at the end couldn’t do it justice.The early nineteenth-century Austrian composer Franz Schubert was,…



The Mikado @ Coliseum, London

by Dominic McHugh

Twenty years on, Jonathan Miller’s production of The Mikado remains witty and diverting.It’s without a doubt the greatest of the Savoy operas by W. S....

Eugene Onegin

by Dominic McHugh

Snow, rain, ice skaters, a lake – the Royal Opera’s new production of Tchaikovsky’s most familiar and enduring opera has it all.And in the two...

Chopin: Piano Concerto No 1; Mahler: Symphony No 5: LSO @ Barbican Hall, London

by Dominic McHugh

It was fascinating to hear Mahler’s Fifth Symphony the day after hearing Berg’s Wozzeck. Both composers dwelt in Vienna at the turn of the twentieth...


Genius of the Violin: Take a Bow!: LSO @ Barbican Hall, London

by Yangen Xu

For the first-time concertgoer unfamiliar with the sound of a string orchestra, attending the LSO’s Genius of the Violin: ‘Take a Bow!’ Concert could have...

Beethoven – Missa Solemnis: LSO @ Barbican Hall, London, 19

by Dominic McHugh

Four years’ work went into the composition of Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis, and you can really tell it’s his most intricate piece, and one of the...

Beethoven – Mass in C; Mozart – ‘Posthorn’ Serenade: LSO @ Barb...

by Dominic McHugh

Verve, wit, excitement, joy: only a few of the many facets to this concert by the London Symphony Orchestra under Sir Colin Davis. Opening with...

Sibelius – Kullervo

by Dominic McHugh

When the LSO opened their 2005-6 season in September with Sibelius’ Kullervo symphony, I was startled by the composer’s sense of the dramatic, something I...

Sibelius – Kullervo Symphony: CD review

by Dominic McHugh

track listing1. Introduction2. Kullervo’s Youth3. Kullervo and his sister4. Kullervo goes to battle5. Kullervo’s death When the LSO opened their 2005-6 season in September with...

The Marriage of Figaro

by William Norris

‘For here they talk about nothing but Figaro.Nothing is played, sung or whistled but Figaro. No opera is drawing like Figaro. Nothing, nothing but Figaro.’So...

Macbeth

by Dominic McHugh

It would not be sensible to stage Verdis Macbeth too literally nowadays, and the power of Phyllida Lloyds production for the Royal Opera lies in...

Iolanthe, or The Peer and the Peri

by Zan Buckner

Nothing much has changed in the world of politics. That is one strikingpoint brought home by watching Gilbert and Sullivan’s Iolanthe.Nashville Opera Artistic Director, John...

Wozzeck

by Dominic McHugh

When Keith Warner’s production of Alban Berg’s Wozzeck opened in 2002, it wowed the crowds and won every award in the book.Over three years down...

Mozart Birthday Weekend – Concert 3 @ St John’s, Smith Square, London

by Dominic McHugh

The London Mozart players really saved the best till last.The final concert in their Mozart Birthday Weekend, celebrating 250 years since the composer’s death, showed...

Mozart Birthday Weekend – Concert 2 @ St John’s, Smith Square, London

by Dominic McHugh

The second offering of the London Mozart Players’ Mozart Birthday Celebration weekend was a slightly mixed bag.The problem was in the programming which, despite being...

Mozart Birthday Weekend – Concert 1 @ St John’s Smith Square, London

by Dominic McHugh

It’s impossible not to give Mozart five stars on his birthday.Especially when it’s his two hundred and fiftieth.It’s lucky, therefore, that the London Mozart Players...

Mozart Birthday Weekend – Concert 1 @ St John’s, Smith Square, London

by Dominic McHugh

It’s impossible not to give Mozart five stars on his birthday. Especially when it’s his 250th.It’s lucky, therefore, that the London Mozart Players gave their...

Giselle

by Dominic McHugh

I must admit to being a little sceptical about the prospect of yet another revival of Giselle.It’s not long since they last performed it, I...

LSO/Valery Gergiev @ Barbican Hall, London

by Dave Paxton

According to one writer, the arrival of Valery Gergiev as Principal Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra was “the orchestral coup of the century”.Perhaps this...

Florestan Trio @ Wigmore Hall, London

by William Norris

There is perhaps no greater atmosphere on London’s classical music scene than a packed house at the Wigmore Hall.Its central location, fabulous acoustics, and its...