Category Archives: review

An Orfeo that would make Wagner’s mouth water

The new production of L’Orfeo by De Nederlandse Reisopera and Opera2Day is a Gesamtkunstwerk that would have made Wagner’s mouth water. Director Monique Wagemakers forges song, dance, music, costumes and décor together into one flowing, inseparable whole. The performance is … Continue reading

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La Cenerentola Rossini: coloraturas by linear metre

  The first thing that catches the eye when entering the Dutch National Opera is the large number of young people who crowd into the cloakroom. The organisation has emphatically advertised its new production of La Cenerentola (Cinderella) as a … Continue reading

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Four reasons to attend Pelléas et Mélisande at Dutch National Opera #HF19

Due to its wide range of events the Holland Festival is at times its own competitor. I missed Turan Dokht and the premiere of Pelléas et Mélisande because I attended aus LICHT. To visit a performance of Debussy’s first and … Continue reading

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Tannhäuser at DNO: no ‘director’s theatre’ but subtle view on hypocrisy around love

Recently, a petition was launched for the restoration of Olivier Keegel’s press accreditation by Dutch National Opera. They no longer provide press tickets because he fiercely attacked Pierre Audi’s programming on the Flemish blog Operagazet and in the Dutch newspaper … Continue reading

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Petra Stump-Linshalm advocates contrabass clarinet on ‘Fantasy Studies’

Just out: Een os op het dak: moderne muziek na 1900 in vogelvlucht: The bass clarinet is no longer the odd one out as a solo instrument. The Dutch pioneer Harry Sparnaay convinced many a composer of its versatility, immense … Continue reading

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Lessons in Love and Violence: smouldering music fails to animate icy drama

‘Love is poison’, Mortimer tells the king in the first scene of Lessons in Love and Violence. The military adviser denounces his relationship with Gaveston, on whom he heaps favours while his subjects are starving. ‘Don’t bore me with the … Continue reading

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Maya Fridman: Prokofiev’s Fiery Angel with hardrock attitude

The Russian-Dutch Maya Fridman (Moscow, 1989) plays classical and contemporary music as well as rock, jazz, folk and flamenco. Communication with the audience is her most important goal, so why limit herself to a particular style or genre? The website … Continue reading

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La clemenza di Tito: exhilarating performance by Teodor Currentzis & musicAeterna

Classical music matters again. At least judging from the protests against the Stockhausen retrospective Aus Licht and the fierce polemics about the interventions of opera directors. Thus La clemenza Di Tito by Teodor Currentzis and Peter Sellars caused controversy even … Continue reading

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Recensie #Reinbertbio: ‘De Leeuw teruggebracht tot menselijke proporties, mét behoud van magie’

Soms lacht het leven je toe. Zo stuitte ik geheel toevallig op een prachtrecensie van mijn biografie Reinbert de Leeuw: mens of melodie van Jaïr Tchong. Hij schreef zijn bespreking al in 2015 voor het online magazine Mixedworldmusic, maar deze was tot vandaag … Continue reading

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Composer Marie Jaëll: French flair, Russian pathos

If her name had been Marc, not Marie Jaëll (1846-1925), she would undoubtedly be considered one of the leading French composers of the late nineteenth, early twentieth century. But she was a woman – therefore unimportant. During her lifetime praised … Continue reading

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