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Musical notes

Modern opera stagings too often work against singers and musicians. Transposing Lady Macbeth to 1970s Russia is striking, but confused

By Stephen Everson   August 2004

Covent Garden gets it right The Royal Opera is having rather a good season. There has been a proper balance between operas of different periods and nationalities, and also between the familiar and the less familiar. So we have had Aida and Madama Butterfly, but also Simon Boccanegra, Orlando and Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk; Der Rosenkavalier and Ariadne auf Naxos, but also Arabella and Samson et Dalila. Casting has often been starry, but as often intelligent and satisfying. Intelligent too has been the choice of conductors: Christoph von Dohn?nyi lithe and lyrical in Arabella, the young Philippe Jordan controlled and…

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