As the Royal Opera opens its new Don Giovanni, Jessica Duchen argues that its theme of moral vacuity is as relevant now as in Mozart's day
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Thursday 05 September 2013
American mezzo-soprano dedicates performance of 'Over the Rainbow' to LGBT community
Monday 26 August 2013
Noelle Barker had a distinguished career as a soprano, encompassing opera, oratorio and recital, but above all she was identified with new music: “There are few singers who devote so much attention to contemporary music as Miss Noelle Barker”, wrote The Times in the early 1960s of a performance of works by Robert Sherlaw Johnson and Francis Routh. She sang with Britten’s English Opera Group and other national companies before turning to teaching, and from 1976 was an influential professor at the Guildhall School of Music.
Sunday 14 July 2013
Olive Lewin was a Jamaican anthropologist and cultural historian who, over the last 60 years, pulled Jamaican folklore out of the shadow of Eurocentric prejudice.
Saturday 29 June 2013
Commissioned to celebrate the coronation of the present Queen, Gloriana was a rare flop for Benjamin Britten. Its story of silly, handsome Robert Devereux’s ascent and descent in the affections of the ageing Elizabeth I is doubly hampered by the Tudorbethan argot of William Plomer’s libretto and the composer’s garish orchestration of John Dowland’s lute songs. For every moment of beauty and brilliance, there is another of thumb-twiddling banality.
Friday 21 June 2013
A poem which famously inspired Nelson Mandela during his decades of incarceration has been set to music by a rising opera star.
Friday 24 May 2013
Comedy: I have been watching the HBO series Girls. It's my latest box set. It's extraordinary. Lena Dunham not only writes and stars in it but also directs it. Which is incredibly brave of her, but makes complete sense as it's totally her vision. And it's fantastic that a network has let her creativity flourish without interference. We need more of that in TV.
Friday 19 April 2013
The umbrella title for English National Ballet’s latest triple bill suggests decadent abandon.
Monday 15 April 2013
Tributes have poured in for Sir Colin Davis, the longest-serving principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), who has died at the age of 85.
Sunday 17 March 2013
His achievement was all the more remarkable for the fact that he was born with cerebral palsy
Monday 11 March 2013
Her portrayal of Tosca in the 1970s was described by one critic as 'valiant and touching'
Thursday 07 March 2013
Those who don’t like Andras Schiff’s Beethoven say he plays like a tyrant: for those who do, his way with the great sonata-cycle has something approaching the authority of an oracle. But even oracles can get things wrong, and so did Schiff’s account of the Rondo of Opus 31 No 1: Beethoven may have written in some quirkiness, but not to the mannered degree we got it here. Sometimes Schiff gets carried away by his own doctrinaire convictions.
Monday 04 March 2013
Embarking on its spring tour with a new production of Cosi fan tutte, ETO offers its audiences a typically provocative essay by the late Edward Said, as a way of intellectually limbering up.
Wednesday 06 February 2013
Hollywood A-listers jet in to add sparkle to Vienna's annual event with an image problem
Tuesday 05 February 2013
Which is Mozart’s last opera? Most people would say The Magic Flute, and it was indeed the last to be staged in his lifetime.
Sunday 03 February 2013
Royal Festival Hall, London
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
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