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Upcoming at ROH and Glyndebourne 2019

What with everything, I missed the Gen Sale for the return to Wagner at ROH (oh, no!). The Ring Cycle is back this Autumn, with Pappano at the helm. I may look up returns for Stemme’s sake (aka, best intentions). Otherwise, we have the following:

Solomon in concert with Zazzo in the title role

Verdi’s Requiem with Jamie Barton and Stoyanova; sold out at this point

Simon Boranegra… for those of strong Verdi constitution (but where there is Wagner, there is also Verdi and there will be another production for the hardcore Verdians soon; an opera we know and I love to make fun of, because a recent new production at ENO clearly was not enough)

Carmen and Hansel and Gretel for the mezzo-deprived; Dudnikova might be an interesting Carmen, I liked her Principessa de Bouillon.


The Queen of Spades = must not forget

Traviata for the casual goer – it’s still the much loved production

Katya Kabanova – I’ll probably go

Così returns but don’t count me in

Insights Masterclass with soprano Angel Blue who’s doing a stint of Traviata this season


La forza del destino 😉 yep, that one, in Loy’s vision; with Trebs and the Alvaro of our times

Faust – hm, I might go, see how Damrau is holding up, PLUS it’s got Abrahamyan in her ROH debut (!) as Siebel (let’s all lament the fate of very good mezzos). On the downside, Ettinger conducts.

Billy Budd conducted by Ivon Bolton – the all male cast opera, let’s check it out…

Andrea Chenier – NOT with the Alvaro of our times but with Alagna and Radvanovsky! How can we resist that offer?!

Tosca with Opolais/Grigolo/Terfel but the last show brings Draculette back to her rightful territory so yay for those who care.


Boris Godunov still with Terfel but without Ain Anger; so soon? Maybe because they were short of money for a new production…

Carmen, because we’d already missed her, this time with Margaine, and Pisaroni as Escamillo, ha!

Figaro after a couple of seasons, because there are only 3 operas and 1/2 by Mozart; this is the season with Kimchilia Bartoli as Cherubino but also unusually with Gerhaher as Figaro plus Keenlyside as the Count. You know it might actually be worth revisiting and weirdly enough, for the men.

La fille du regiment returns once more, now with Devieilhe, and Camarena will show us his 3283576 high C in a row. Then again, Pido conducts.

In conclusion, some interesting turns but generally a rather meh year ahead for yours truly’s taste.

Glyndebourne 2019

La damnation de Faust – a Richard Jones production, so it could be much fun

Rusalka – nah

Il barbiere – see below

Die Zauberflote – I’ll have to see it at some point, don’t know that this is that point; however, Agathe, David Portillo is Tamino 😉

Cendrillon – usually a spectacular mezzo-mezzo borefest, now with DeNiese and the ever trouserable Kate Lindsey; I mean, they had to make up for the music…

Rinaldo with DeShong in the title role. A bit of a strange choice IMO, but to be honest I have not heard her live and in Handel to boot. I was proven wrong before.

Awwwpera moment…

I’m not a total grouch and being that toaday is for gushing and hearts, the Daily prompt has actually spurred me to share my first moment of awwwpera:


p style=”text-align:justify;”>I was looking around on youtube, just getting my feet wet, listening to a bit of this and a bit of that and feeling somewhat unsure about how this exploring opera thing went, when I came across this rendition. I immediately thought it was the most adorable thing. I then went on a JDD rampage (there was a lot of youtube pillaging, yes). To this day JDD is my favourite Rosina, just the right mix of playfulness and venom 🙂

Zipping through Paisiello’s Il barbiere di Siviglia (1782)

When this earlier Barbiere (also based on Beaumarchais’ play) was mentioned on that long list of operas I commented on before I assumed it couldn’t be terrible. I made time to watch/listen to it and here’s my informed verdict:

Mildly exciting but very listenable and some really nice bits – Almaviva’s wooing cavatina Saper bramate and a couple of Rosina’s arias. No Figaro arias! (although he has at least one good duet early on with Almaviva). There is also a much less exciting Calunnia and a different one for where Contro un cuor (Rosina’s music lesson aria) comes (Gia riede primavera – amico Wolfie wrote his own version which I think is better, but you could see that coming – Schon lacht der holder Frühling) plus a swinging one for Bartolo when he sings to Rosina “one from his youff” which is at least as catchy as Rossini’s. The ensembles aren’t nearly as good as Mozart’s or Rossini’s yet this was immensely popular in its day, moreso than Rossini’s version. Paisiello seems a little unfocused in his writing, compared with these two, as a result the arias go on too long and the dramatic impact is lessened. Rosina is satisfyingly bratty, though.