Bluebeard’s Castle. Review by Alan Price. Bluebeard’s Castle is one of Michael Powell’s striking music films. And he’s made quite a few of them. Powell directs the opera’s singers / actors with a purposeful intensity.
Last Night of The Proms 2023. Review by Julia Pascal. It was the presence of the hundreds of blue EU flags which made me realise that the Last Night of the Proms is not just a xeno-fest. It is a testimony to the international element of art and music.
Death Note, The Musical in Concert. Review by Barbara Lewis. The Japanese manga Death Note has sold more than 30 million copies, making it one of the best-selling mangas yet. Whether the musical version can be as successful in our straitened times remains to be seen. Judging by the London run, it’s conceivable.
Poetry review – LET HIM BRING A SHRUBBE: Edmund Prestwich takes a close and appreciative look at Katharine Towers’ collection which draws on the life & music of composer Gerald Finzi
Trouble in Tahiti. Review by Barbara Lewis. Opera typically is the medium for extraordinary emotion on a grand scale. The great straddler of genres Bernstein makes it the vehicle to explore the depressing ordinariness of the countless millions who can’t find their way back to the extraordinary emotion they once felt.
Annie Get Your Gun. Review by Barbara Lewis. Irving Berlin’s “There’s No Business Like Show Business” is the perfect opening for a show and especially for the inaugural show at the Lavender Theatre on Epsom Downs.
Candide, WNO. Review by Barbara Lewis. Too messy, too long, too anti-Semitic, too misogynistic: there are many reasons to avoid Bernstein’s Candide. And yet, director James Bonas and the Welsh National Opera bravely make a powerful case for staging this attack on the depravity of those in power and the futility of war.
The Mikado, Wilton’s Music Hall. Review by Barbara Lewis. In 1885, when the Mikado began delighting audiences, it was expedient to set the splendidly silly light opera in Japan to give it maximum freedom to satirise British institutions. Director Sasha Regan travels in time not space to send up a 1950s public school camping trip, in its way as exotic as imperial Japan.
Gypsy, The Mill at Sonning. Review by Barbara Lewis. “Mothers out!” roars the vaudeville maestro Uncle Jocky at the start of what has been fondly dubbed “the mother of all musicals”. But Gypsy Rose Lee is one mother who is staying right beside the daughters she is determined to thrust on the stage for the career she might have had had she not been born too soon or started too late.