Reviews

Vancouver Opera's Storybook Perfect Cenerentola

Vancouver Opera's Storybook Perfect Cenerentola

Rossini is incredibly unforgiving in his lighting-fast patter, overlapping harmonies, and blistering tempi in the ensembles, and every single one was perfectly precise, executed flawlessly, and were still all funny, evocative, and playful.

Melissa Ratcliff
A dismal opera: Werther

A dismal opera: Werther

The effect was darkly whimsical and visually captivating, allowing the drama to unravel within a framework of fiction – well-suited to the opera's poetic exaggerations and high-flying emotions.

Carly Gordon
The Mikado in the White House

The Mikado in the White House

Although meant to generate laughs at the expense of privileged white people, it's extremely difficult today to present this show, even as gently written as it is, without entering dangerous racist waters.

Loren Lester
Multifaceted success: HGO's The Phoenix

Multifaceted success: HGO's The Phoenix

In short, if this opera causes such a heady discussion about how best to fertilize our soil with culture, philosophy, and the pursuit of authentic enlightenment, it certainly deserves not only the reviews that will surely come up about it, but a whole book of Platonic dialogues as well!

Andrew Schneider
Transcendent & ambitious: Billy Budd at ROH

Transcendent & ambitious: Billy Budd at ROH

This production co-produced with Teatro Real, Madrid and Rome Opera is the first return of the opera to the Royal Opera stage in nearly 20 years and welcomes back the incomparable Deborah Warner, who has made a career staging Britten.

Alessia Naccarato
Mahler's Resurrection Symphony: so hopeful it'll make you cry

Mahler's Resurrection Symphony: so hopeful it'll make you cry

So confident was I that I almost took it for granted; so, when Mahler's music began, it was as though it dragged me by the nape of my neck through an emotional rollercoaster I didn't know I needed.

Jenna Simeonov
The rapture and troubles of Egyptian Helena

The rapture and troubles of Egyptian Helena

The plot is rather fantastical even compared to some of Strauss' prior works, to the point that I would almost be tempted to call it hallucinogenic: Helen and Menelaus find themselves washed up on an island where a sorceress enchants Menelaus to fall in love with Helen all over again.

Arturo Fernandez
Classic & lavish: Faust at ROH

Classic & lavish: Faust at ROH

He subjects Faust to a writhing, grotesque circus; tormenting him with visions of a pregnant Marguerite, and a dead Valentin. Schrott is maniacal and callous, delighting in the pain of others and becoming more despicable every moment he is on stage.

Alessia Naccarato
Very light indeed: The Mikado in the Midwest

Very light indeed: The Mikado in the Midwest

The comedy of this silly, convoluted plot is no longer dependent on racist stereotypes, imagery and impersonations; instead it forces the players step up to the plate and be imaginative.

Callie Cooper
A timeless treat: Manitoba Opera's Barber of Seville

A timeless treat: Manitoba Opera's Barber of Seville

The highly engaged audience was obviously enthralled with all elements of this production, laughing uproariously at onstage antics and giving hearty applause where appropriate (including at one especially effective lighting gag).

Neil Weisensel

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