ENO tackles anti-war epic
An opera in three acts, three film screens and over 100 musicians
Sunday 24 November 1996
The English National Opera's London premiere of Soldiers, Bernd Alois Zimmermann's rarely staged 1960s anti-war opera, has been both acclaimed as a masterpiece of multi-media and total theatre and rejected as unperform-able. Based on an 18th-century play, and first performed in Cologne in 1965, the score calls for an augmented orchestra of 100-plus, five conductors, three film screens and four offstage percussion groups - with enough gear to stage a war themselves.
Directed by Michael Freeman, Eno's production has been described as contemporary opera's ultimate challenge.
There are further performances on 26, 28 November, and 5, 10, 12 December. (Booking: 0171-632 8300)
Critics, Real Life, p11
Photograph by LAURIE LEWIS
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