Shame, camera, action: Verdi’s La traviata at Longborough

Heavyweight opera behemoth /institution La traviata is always in need of agile, intelligent reworkings like Longborough’s intriguing new production. Daisy Evans’ incisive update makes Violetta Valéry a Hollywood filmstar in the late Fifties, taking inspiration from the celebrated, yet tortured life of Marilyn Monroe. While this has certainly been done before (memorably by Grange Park Opera in 2014), Evans’ innovative metatheatrical approach has parts of the opera actually taking place during studio filming, where Baron Douphol is the all-powerful director. This opera depends fundamentally on the dangerous psychological tension between outward show and inner suffering, and Evans’ concept clarifies that contrast: the ease in which some lines translate to ‘performance’ is fascinating.

Click here to read my full review on Bachtrack.

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