Nico Muhly's Marnie is a must-see, alongside Semiramide and The Rake's Progressby Neil Norman / October 12, 2017 / Leave a comment
Published in November 2017 issue of Prospect Magazine
English National Opera, 18th November to 3rd December
Nico Muhly, above, follows up his 2011 opera debut Two Boys with his version of the psychological thriller Marnie. One of Alfred Hitchcock’s most insidiously erotic movies, Marnie is about a young woman whose compulsive kleptomania and fear of the colour red hide a dark past. Broadway musical director Michael Mayer makes his UK opera debut at ENO with mezzo Sasha Cooke in the title role and bass baritone Daniel Okulitch as her sadistic boss Rutland. Lesley Garrett will sing the part of his mother. Although generally regarded as a classical composer, Muhly has worked with artists like Björk. This is the most hotly anticipated new opera this year.
Royal Opera House, 19th November to 16th December
The Royal Opera’s first ever production of Rossini’s magnificently doom-laden opera is in the capable hands of David Alden, a pioneer of politicised opera. Based on a story by Voltaire, it has elements of Greek tragedy in the tale of a queen who murders her husband and passes the crown to an unknown man. Semiramide features magnificent choruses and a powerful central role for Joyce DiDonato.