8 June 2011

Don Giovanni back at Glyndebourne

When I first saw the programme for this year's Glyndebourne Festival I was a little disappointed by the number of revivals of operas that I had seen recently. There are six operas in the season and I've seen four of them.

Choosing to see the other two operas was an easy choice but if I wanted to see more than just two operas I had to pick some to see again.

Don Giovanni was chosen for me as some friends wanted to see that and I had said last year that I would be happy to see it again.

This year's performance is a revival of last year's production but with a different cast and a different conductor and that made it a very different show.

A much better one.

My minor gripes about some of the cast not being fully convincing in their roles (as actors) were swept away and the production was close to perfect.

Of course there will be some people who do not like the possibly over elaborate box that transforms itself to make each scene and who will be dismissive of the opera because of that but I keep saying that, for me, it's all about the singing and that was stupendous.

The star for me was Albina Shagimuratova as Donna Anna (the first woman that Don Giovanni wrongs during the opera). I was transfixed.

It may have been a repeat performance but Don Giovanni was a very strong start to the new season.

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