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’…

Songs of innocence and experience: Verdi’s Falstaff at Garsington

Bruno Ravella’s fast-paced direction for Garsington Opera honours Falstaff’s intense immediacy with a clear emphasis on dynamic physical and visual comedy underpinned by taut stagecraft, while still allowing time for its vital moments of pathos to breathe on stage in this subtle, elegant production. Henry Waddington’s dextrous characterisation means Falstaff’s connection to Rigoletto, another Verdi tortured clown, feels unmistakeable.…

Norwich Opera Club: Don Carlo, Verdi

Tonight’s programme: a screening of Verdi’s Don Carlo (CD and DVD presented by Wilson Graham). Norwich Opera Club is a sociable, informal gathering of opera enthusiasts. The Club doesn’t produce performances, so you don’t need to be able to sing.  You may want to learn more, you may want to share your expertise or you may…

MET Opera Screening: Verdi’s Luisa Miller

Plácido Domingo adds yet another chapter to his legendary Met career with this rarely performed Verdi gem, a heart-wrenching tragedy based on Friedrich Schiller’s novel Intrigue and Love. The young maiden Luisa loves Rodolfo, unaware that he is actually the son of the local lord. An unscrupulous rival for her affections tells her father of…

ROH Live Screening: Verdi’s Macbeth

The warrior Macbeth fights on the side of the King of Scotland – but when a coven of witches prophesy that he shall become king himself, a ruthless ambition drives Macbeth and his wife to horrific acts. Murder makes Macbeth king, and intrigue and butchery are the hallmarks of his brief, doomed reign. The witches make…

Pre-performance talk by Charlotte Valori: Verdi and Macbeth

Come along to the Fisher Theatre bar before their screening of the Royal Opera House’s production of Macbeth, directed by Phyllida Lloyd, and you will find me talking about Verdi and his Macbeths – yes, there were two – and why this dark, Shakespearian tale of Scottish murder so utterly captivated the Italian composer for much…

Norwich Opera Club: Rigoletto, Verdi

Tonight’s programme: a screening of Verdi’s Rigoletto (DVD presented by Roger Everett). Norwich Opera Club is a sociable, informal gathering of opera enthusiasts. The Club doesn’t produce performances, so you don’t need to be able to sing.  You may want to learn more, you may want to share your expertise or you may simply want to…

La traviata: Verdi, Ellen Kent International

Ellen Kent International bring a lavish touring production of La traviata to East Anglia, with international soloists, chorus and full orchestra. Performed with sumptuous sets and costumes, the opera is sung in Italian with English surtitles. A tragic tale of searing passion and memorable music, La traviata is Verdi’s outstanding interpretation of one of the…

La traviata, Verdi: Ellen Kent International

Ellen Kent International bring a lavish touring production of La traviata to East Anglia, with international soloists, chorus and full orchestra. Performed with sumptuous sets and costumes, the opera is sung in Italian with English surtitles. A tragic tale of searing passion and memorable music, La traviata is Verdi’s outstanding interpretation of one of the…

Clamorous harbingers of blood and death: Verdi’s Macbeth at Buxton

Buxton International Festival are currently staging Verdi’s first, 1847 Macbeth, written for the Teatro della Pergola, Florence, a theatre similar in size to the Edwardian jewel-box of Buxton’s own Opera House (just look how beautiful it is). This earlier version is a shorter, sharper work, which sees Macbeth dying on stage with one final aria to…