• Review

Proms 18 and 20, review

Prom 18: Connolly/Tiffin Boys’ Choir/LSO/Haitink and Prom 20: Monteverdi/NYCS/ORR/Gardiner

  • Review

First Night of the Proms review

This year’s Proms opened with a rousing rendition of the Marseillaise from the BBC Symphony Orchestra under Sakari Oramo: the day after the Nice atrocity, no gesture could have better underlined solidarity with our traumatised concitoyens. From that it was a graceful segue into Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet overture, with strings and woodwind in coruscating form. Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky cantata gave the combined choruses of the BBCSO and BBCNOW their head, with a refined intervention from Olga Borodina in the ‘Field of the Dead’ section; this Russian mezzo’s artistry allowed her to weave exquisite arabesques around the choral theme.

Why the other classical musics of the world deserve a place in UK conc

The British classical-music establishment is full of complacent cultural imperialism. Britain is now a very multi-ethnic society, but you’d never know that from its concert halls.  There’s an increasingly need for the other classical musics of the world to be given their proper place in UK concert programmes, says Michael Church

  • Review

Tristan and Isolde, English National Opera, review

Much buzz surrounded the opening night Tristan and Isolde directed by the ENO’s incoming artistic director, the irrepressibly optimistic 39-year-old American Daniel Kramer, taking over at a time of great turbulence. It’s not his first production for the company, following Birtwistle’s Punch and Judy in 2009 and a Josef Fritzl-imbued Duke Bluebeard’s Castle which was topical, but a very particular take on Bartòk’s vision. Broadly speaking, his treatment of Wagner’s hymn to the apotheosis of love is a success.  

  • Review

La Voix humaine review

An intimate living room presentation of Poulenc's 1958 operatic monologue by the inaugural Cardiff Festival of Voice

  • Review

Richard Farnes

To see and hear the Ring Cycle sung, played and performed at the extraordinary level reached by Opera North this summer is a very special musical experience indeed

  • Review

Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Glyndebourne, review

The Leiser-Caurier “Barber” at Covent Garden has been the contemporary benchmark for productions of Rossini’s sparkling opera buffa, but Annabel Arden’s new one outdoes it through sheer visual sophistication.