Opera & Dance649 entries

Miss Fortune

Opens: 12/03/2012 Closes: 28/03/2012 ROH, London
The ROH decide it is high time they staged an opera sporting break-dancers, a flaming kebab van, and a female writer – the first for one of their main stage commissions. British composer Judith Weir does the honours, with her first opera in 17 years continuing an interest in old-time parables, taking from a Sicilian folktale. For more information visit: http://www.roh.org.uk/whatson/production.aspx?pid=18138 Buy: http://www.roh.org.uk/booknow/calendar.aspx Watch:
50%
Opera Britannia“I had such high hopes for this opera...” This is an opera suffused with bathos, with a little street dancing thrown in to keep us entertained. In fact the dramatic apotheosis of the opera is rich-launderette-customer Simon’s momentarily impassioned aria...
 
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The Telegraph“This is a disaster...” It’s a sacred cow that new works are the lifeblood that will ensure opera’s future, but if Miss Fortune is the best that Covent Garden can do, I suggest that there’s a case for slaughtering this inconvenient beast...
 
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The Arts Desk“This work sees Weir in full compositional freefall...” I think of the UK premiere of Miss Fortune at the Royal Opera last night - the inertness of the music, the superficiality of the story, the platitudes and, most bafflingly, the racism - and I wonder, what has happened to Judith Weir?...
 
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60%
Evening Standard“Never quite delivers the goods...” Despite the fireworks when the kebab van is set upon by hooligan breakdancers, there are few signs of the blazing creativity of which Weir is actually capable...
 
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The Observer“I cannot find much to redeem Miss Fortune in its current form...” The work should not have been put on the Royal Opera House stage without rigorous overhaul, especially in a staging so crassly bare and wide open that the voices were left stranded, good singers reduced to reedy insubstantiality...
 
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Whatsonstage.com“An outstanding disaster...” I couldn’t help but think of all the operas crying out for a staging at this most prestigious of addresses, that continue to be neglected. Could no one have pulled the plug before this witless farrago ever got near a stage?...
 
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40%
Guardian“Even the music is drab and unengaging...” The real problem, though, is the slightness of it all. Scenes follow like cartoonish tableaux, without real characterisation, or confrontation, and without suggesting a dramatic shape...
 
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The Independent“Miss Fortune in name and deed...” It’s a social fable with contemporary resonances in everything but its words and music, and worst of all it’s an adult opera which sounds like it’s spoon feeding amateur philosophy to a child. Silly and naive...
 
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50%
The Stage“A lack of momentum...” There’s an air of whimsy about the enterprise that doesn’t wholly convince. Nor, in its entirety, does Weir’s score, despite its articulacy and frequent charm; there’s a lack of momentum and a dearth of really strong ideas...
 
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Reviewing: Miss Fortune

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