Opera & Dance652 entries

The Pilgrim's Progress

Opens: 05/11/2012 Closes: 28/11/2012 ENO, London
The ENO dusts off Vaughan Williams’ allegorical opera for its first staging in 60-odd years. Based on John Bunyan’s 17th-century Christian morality tale, this took decades to write, but never became an opera house staple despite being hailed a masterwork by some. Director Yoshi Oïda, a Noh theatre expert and long-time Peter Brook associate, aims to put it back on the map. For more information visit: http://www.eno.org/see-whats-on/productions/production-page.php?&itemid=2132 Buy: http://www.eno.org/see-whats-on/productions/production-page.php?&itemid=2132
60%
Evening Standard“Musically it’s a triumph...” Martyn Brabbins unfailingly captures the spiritual ecstasy of a score that often shows the composer at his most inspired. Heading a strong cast, Roland Wood, doubling as Bunyan and The Pilgrim, suitably combines rapture and anguish...
 
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40%
The Independent“It’s a full hour before we get some real drama...” Wood apart, the plaudits must go to conductor Martyn Brabbins and his wonderful brass, to the chorus, and to the Protean Timothy Robinson, who lights up every scene in which he appears...
 
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60%
Whatsonstage.com“Falls short of a thrilling theatrical experience...” Worth seeing because it’s such a rarity (this is the first fully-staged London production for over 60 years) but mostly for Vaughan Williams’s glorious score, so redolent of his symphonic output, and Martin Brabbyns’s conducting of it...
 
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80 %
The Arts Desk“Immersive and unconventionally dramatic, this is ENO back at their best...” The orchestra are if anything outdone by the chorus – delighting in some of the finest ensemble-writing they’ll get to sing all season, their blend and painfully-precise tuning transformed the Coliseum into a vast, resonating bell...
 
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60%
The Stage“Roland Wood achieves greatness in the role of Pilgrim...” The spiritual heart of the piece comes over powerfully, including its simplistic and sententious moral judgements. The score remains problematic. There is much that is beautiful in Vaughan Williams’ characteristically visionary writing...
 
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