The best performances to see this monthby Neil Norman / June 16, 2016 / Leave a comment
Published in July 2016 issue of Prospect Magazine
23rd June to 8th July, English National Opera, London Coliseum
David Alden’s sizzling production of Leoš Janácek’s opera made a powerful impact on its debut in 2006, bagging two Olivier Awards in 2007. The tale of tragic love in a 19th-century Moravian community was updated to the 20th century and relocated to the grimy fringes of an industrial estate. First performed in 1904, Jenufa is a prime example of Janácek’s realist operas. Jenufa becomes ensnared in a web of love over her secret pregnancy. With elements that include infanticide and face-slashing, it is hardly less shocking today than it was when it first appeared. American mezzo-soprano Laura Wilde makes her debut as Jenufa while the crucial part of the Kostelnicka, or “stepmother” will be taken by Michaela Martens who returns to the role following her debut in the 2009 revival. In his last season as ENO’s Music Director Mark Wigglesworth will assuredly be conducting con brio.