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    1. August 7, 2016

      Norma/Opening Concert, Edinburgh International Festival — review

      “My wife and four or five dolls” was the formula for a successful opera season prescribed by the husband of Regency...

    2. June 22, 2016

      Werther, Royal Opera House, London — ‘The air sizzles’

      Who said that Puccini and Tchaikovsky gave us the height of operatic passion? Try the later stages of this revival of...

    1. March 15, 2016

      Boris Godunov, Royal Opera House, London — ‘Triumphant Terfel’

      An autocratic leader holds Russia in his grasp. Anybody who obstructs his path to power is eliminated. The Russian...

    2. March 4, 2016

      Schumann: Piano Concerto — review

      Schumann Piano Concerto Jan Lisiecki (DG) Is Schumann’s songful Piano Concerto the music of a dreamer or a bright-eyed,...

    3. February 9, 2016

      The Mighty Handful, Royal Opera House, London — ‘A fiery sound’

      Covent Garden’s new production of Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov opens in just over a month. This concert by Antonio...

    4. December 7, 2015

      Cavalleria rusticana and Pagliacci, Royal Opera House, London — ‘Gripping’

      Few operas are as rooted in place as the “heavenly twins”, Cavalleria rusticana and Pagliacci. It is possible to update...

    5. October 9, 2015

      Verdi: Aida — review

      Verdi Aida Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia (Warner Classics) An all-star cast in a studio recording...

    6. September 18, 2015

      Puccini: The Puccini album — review

      Puccini The Puccini album Jonas Kaufmann (Sony) Singing Puccini at the Last Night of the Proms is unlikely to have done...

    7. August 28, 2015

      Sir Peter Maxwell Davies: Symphony No. 10 — review

      Sir Peter Maxwell Davies Symphony No. 10 London Symphony Orchestra (LSO Live) It is hard to shake off the image of the...

    8. August 28, 2015

      Haydn, Santoliquido, et al: Live at Wigmore Hall — review

      Haydn, Santoliquido, et al Live at Wigmore Hall Joyce and Tony (Erato) “Joyce and Tony” they may be to Erato. To the...

    9. June 30, 2015

      Guillaume Tell, Royal Opera House, London — review

      One of the highlights of the 2011 BBC Proms was a concert performance of Rossini’s monumental Guillaume Tell, conducted...

    10. June 26, 2015

      ‘Pappano’s Classic Voices’, BBC4

      Last weekend’s big offering in the BBC’s season on the classical voice seemed nervous of devoting a programme to an...

    11. May 7, 2015

      Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Royal Opera House, London — review

      When Antonio Pappano became music director of the Royal Opera he had a dream of giving concerts with the Orchestra of...

    12. May 4, 2015

      Król Roger, Royal Opera House, London — review

      At the climax of Euripides’ The Bacchae the head of the central character is paraded on a staff, torn off by the...

    13. January 21, 2015

      Andrea Chénier, Royal Opera House, London — review

      It is 30 years since the last Andrea Chénier at the Royal Opera House. Nobody seems to have missed it much, but when...

    14. October 21, 2014

      London Symphony Orchestra, Barbican, London – review

      It is fitting that the London Symphony Orchestra should take a leading role in marking Andrzej Panufnik’s centenary....

    15. October 15, 2014

      I due Foscari, Royal Opera House, London – review

      It was considerate of Verdi to leave his opera I due Foscari to posterity. The central role of Francesco Foscari, Doge...

    16. October 10, 2014

      Upcoming concerts and festivals

      I due Foscari, October 14-November 2, Royal Opera House, London Plácido Domingo – once a tenor, now a baritone –...

    17. September 15, 2014

      Otello/Anna Nicole/Rigoletto, London – review

      As the 2014/15 season opens, the wheel of fortune has dealt very different hands to London’s two opera companies. While...

    18. September 8, 2014

      Joyce DiDonato, Wigmore Hall, London – review

      Every year Wigmore Hall opens its new season with a celebrity song recital. This year’s opening, though, was different...

    19. September 5, 2014

      Upcoming concerts and festivals

      Joyce DiDonato, September 6, Wigmore Hall, London The Wigmore Hall season opens with the star duo of mezzo Joyce...

    20. June 27, 2014

      Ariadne auf Naxos, Royal Opera House, London – review

      No composer was so intent on navel-gazing as Richard Strauss. In his 150th anniversary year we are getting plenty of...

    21. June 18, 2014

      Manon Lescaut, Royal Opera House, London – review

      It is a brave director who tries to update Puccini. For a group of works commonly (if erroneously) described as...

    22. June 11, 2014

      La Cenerentola/Rossini Sacred Works, Salzburg Whitsun Festival – review

      Cecilia Bartoli, artistic director and resident prima donna of the Salzburg Whitsun Festival, made news last year with...

    23. May 20, 2014

      Orchestra of the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Royal Festival Hall, London – review

      Since Antonio Pappano took over as musical director in 2005 the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia has started to...

    24. May 9, 2014

      Angelo Bozzolini: The Italian Character – review

      Put Antonio Pappano in front of a movie camera and the result is compulsive viewing. Put him in front of an Italian...

    25. February 7, 2014

      LSO/Pappano, Barbican, London – review

      A year ago Sir Peter Maxwell Davies thought he was on his deathbed: diagnosed with leukaemia, he had been admitted to...

    26. December 2, 2013

      Parsifal, Royal Opera House, London – review

      Mankind is sick. The conventional remedies, religious and medicinal, have proved useless. Where lies the cure for our...

    27. October 20, 2013

      Les Vêpres siciliennes, Royal Opera House, London – review

      If opera was only about theatrical spectacle and fine singing, this new Verdi production would count as a success. The...

    28. August 14, 2013

      Don Carlo, Salzburg Festival, Grosses Festspielhaus – review

      Take a world-famous stage director, an all-star cast, a first-rate orchestra and a great conductor, put them to work on...

    29. April 12, 2013

      Rossini: Petite Messe Solonnelle

      Rossini’s treatment of the Latin Mass is subtle, genial and, yes, jaunty: we could not be further from the opulent...

    30. October 5, 2012

      Der Ring des Nibelungen, Royal Opera House, London

      After the 18-hour marathon of Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen it would seem natural that the overwhelming emotion...

    31. July 16, 2012

      Otello, Royal Opera House, London

      It is remarkable how many operas have been inspired by Shakespeare’s plays. The tally even includes three each of...

    32. July 13, 2012

      Puccini: Il Trittico

      Richard Jones’s staging of the three Puccini one-acters was the one unqualified success of the Royal Opera’s 2011-12...

    33. June 26, 2012

      Les Troyens, Royal Opera House, London

      More is less. But don’t try telling David McVicar, director of the new Royal Opera staging of Berlioz’s Trojan war...

    34. March 9, 2012

      Rolando Villazón: Werther

      In July 2010, after well documented vocal problems, numerous cancellations and failed comebacks, Villazón croaked his...

    35. January 11, 2012

      LSO/Pappano, Barbican, London

      Does the timing mean that somebody at Buckingham Palace had been checking the Barbican’s classical music programme?...

    36. December 31, 2011

      2012 new year’s honours

      Knights Bachelor Gerald Acher , for charitable services Rodney Aldridge , chairman, the Aldridge Foundation, for...

    37. December 20, 2011

      Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Royal Opera House, London

      Since the Royal Opera first unveiled its Meistersinger nearly 20 years ago, Wagner’s only comedy has become the...

    38. November 5, 2011

      Mahler: Symphony No 6

      More Mahler, more invidious choices. Unless you are a believer in only one way of doing things, which negates the very...

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