Choice: Opera

The List
Bluebeard's Castle, Symphony Hall, Birmingham (0121-212 3333)

Bartok (above) was one of a select band who only attempted one opera. Why write more when your first is this good? It is also one of the few operas which really doesn't need a full staging. Bartok used a larger orchestra than for anything else he wrote, so it is fitting that this concert performance of his bold one-act thriller features Simon Rattle conducting the CBSO plus the dynamite cast of John Tomlinson and Kristine Ciesinski. The evening, which is repeated on Thursday, is completed by Mozart's Prague Symphony and Strauss's boisterous tone poem `Till Eulenspiegel'.