All stories by Edward Bhesania on BroadwayStars

Friday, September 14, 2018

The Second Violinist review at Barbican Theatre, London – ‘innovative and absorbing’ by Edward Bhesania

Following their first opera The Last Hotel, a chilling tale in which a couple helps a woman to commit suicide, composer Donnacha

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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Blue Electric/Einstein’s Dreams/Nibiru! review at RADA studios – ‘some strong ideas’ by Edward Bhesania

The one thing you can be sure of with a Tete a Tete triple bill is unpredictability. And yet on this occasion

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Friday, August 3, 2018

Mary’s Hand review at Holy Cross Church, London – ‘well-conceived operatic monodrama’ by Edward Bhesania

The Tete a Tete Opera Festival, running until August 18, thrives on the new and the experimental, so the 80-minute monodrama Mary’s

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Thursday, June 7, 2018

Der Fliegende Hollander review at Longborough Festival Opera – ‘beautifully played but dramatically inert’ by Edward Bhesania

In Wagner’s Der Fliegende Hollander, the ‘romantic wanderer’ figure takes on a supernatural element. The titular sea-captain is condemned to sail the

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Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Goldilocks and the Three Little Pigs review at Coleman Gallery, London – ‘an operatic fairytale’ by Edward Bhesania

If Marvel’s Avengers and DC’s Justice League can do it, then so can opera. For its second production the enterprising company the

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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

La Boheme review at Trafalgar Studios, London – ‘dramatic immediacy’ by Edward Bhesania

This is the first of two King’s Head Theatre shows transferring to the West End, the company now having left its home

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Friday, October 27, 2017

Rodelinda review at London Coliseum – ‘bold and inventive’ by Edward Bhesania

Seventh-century Lombardy, the setting of Handel’s Rodelinda, may feel remote even by opera seria standards, but in Richard Jones’ English National Opera

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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

The Barber of Seville review at Glyndebourne – ‘high musical standards’ by Edward Bhesania

It’s a shame, given that Rossini’s comedy The Barber of Seville delivers in primary colours, that Annabel Arden’s production doesn’t match the

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Monday, September 25, 2017

Fever Pitch – The Opera review at Union Chapel, London – ‘an excellent score’ by Edward Bhesania

Written in 1992, Nick Hornby’s million-selling semi-autobiographical first novel about a fan’s obsession with Arsenal has been made into two films –

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Friday, July 28, 2017

Tete a Tete Festival 2017 review at the Place, London – ‘an engine room for new opera’ by Edward Bhesania

With subjects ranging from Brexit to a Mars mission, from Trump to the Berlin Wall, this year’s 10th-anniversary Tete a Tete opera

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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Il Turco in Italia review at Garsington Opera, Wormsley – ‘a world-class achievement’ by Edward Bhesania

Martin Duncan’s 2011 production of Rossini’s frothy and at times acerbic comedy makes its first return at Garsington. It’s an evening that

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Monday, June 26, 2017

Fidelio review at Longborough Festival Opera – ‘imaginative and unsettling’ by Edward Bhesania

Beethoven’s message in his only opera, Fidelio, is that love and courage can counter oppression and leverage freedom. It’s a testament to

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Monday, June 5, 2017

Silent Opera’s Vixen review at the Vaults, London – ‘bold, unsettling, riveting’ by Edward Bhesania

Viewed by some as the most crusty of art forms, opera has occasionally tried too hard to reinvent itself, to be ‘relevant’,

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Friday, June 2, 2017

Semele review at Garsington Opera – ‘a triumph’ by Edward Bhesania

Garsington’s new production of Handel’s Semele, directed by Annilese Miskimmon (soon to join Oslo National Opera as Artistic Director), is something of

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Monday, May 22, 2017

La Traviata review at Glyndeboune – ‘a noteworthy Glyndebourne debut’ by Edward Bhesania

Glyndebourne’s website points to the “visual beauty’ and “opulent” production of Verdi’s tragic profile of the consumptive courtesan Violetta and her selfless

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Thursday, May 18, 2017

Meet the world’s largest arena by Edward Bhesania

When opera was born, in Florence around 1600, no one could have imagined that it might develop from its intimate courtly origins

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Thursday, March 23, 2017

La Voix Humaine review at Royal Albert Hall, London – ‘movingly performed’ by Edward Bhesania

One of opera’s great (and unsettling) monologues, Poulenc’s La Voix Humaine is a vocal and dramatic tour de force for soprano. Based

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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Shahrazad review at Leighton House, London – ‘impressive singing’ by Edward Bhesania

With its golden-domed, Iznik-tiled Arab Hall, the sumptuous orientalism of Leighton House – former home of the Victorian painter Frederic Leighton –

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

La Traviata review at Royal Opera House – ‘solid, but cautious’ by Edward Bhesania

Richard Eyre’s production of Verdi’s tuneful crowd-pleaser returns for its 14th revival, determined, it seems, to earn its keep. With a cast

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Friday, November 25, 2016

Hallelujah: Oratorio Balbulum review at Mupa, Budapest – ‘a unique new oratorio’ by Edward Bhesania

The title alone – Hallelujah: Oratorio Balbulum (Stuttering Oratorio) – of this one-hour work for orchestra, chorus, two soloists and narrator –

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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Manon Lescaut review at Royal Opera House, London – ‘breathtaking orchestral playing’ by Edward Bhesania

Manon Lescaut stands at some remove from Puccini’s most popular operas – there are relatively few standout arias, plus something of a

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

L'Elisir d'Amore , Royal Opera House, London by Edward Bhesania

Royal Opera House, London: There's a sure-footedness about Laurent Pelly's L'Elisir d'Amore, now receiving its third revival at the Royal Opera House. Read the full review

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Ottone , Hackney Empire, London by Edward Bhesania

Hackney Empire, London: Ottone is a 1722 opera seria charting the story of the German king Otto (Ottone) who, while en route to Rome to claim both the throne and his Byzantine bride, Teofane…

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I due Foscari , Royal Opera House, Covent Garden by Edward Bhesania

Royal Opera House, Covent Garden: Not many 73-year-olds can routinely endure the rigours of stage performance. Read the full review

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Xerxes , Coliseum, London by Edward Bhesania

Coliseum, London: Nicholas Hytner's Oliver award-winning 1985 production of Handel's Xerxes has aged well, if it's aged much at all. David Fielding's designs place the ac…

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Monday, September 8, 2014

The Blank Canvas , King's Head Theatre, London by Edward Bhesania

King's Head Theatre, London: "Where has it come from, this dazzling geometric jumble?" So asks the artist Lucy, as she involuntarily sees metrical shapes appear in what she knows t…

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Friday, July 25, 2014

Tete-a-Tete Opera Festival 2014 , Central Saint Martins/Kings Place, London by Edward Bhesania

Central Saint Martins/Kings Place, London: After eight seasons at Hammersmith's Riverside Studios, the experimental opera festival Tete a Tete has relocated to Central Saint Martins and…

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Norma , Holland Park Theatre, London by Edward Bhesania

Holland Park Theatre, London: In certain sections of Bellini's Norma - a pinnacle of the bel canto repertoire - the music takes on an almost Wagner-esque dramatic intensity, in line wit…

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Thursday, June 19, 2014

Quartett , Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House by Edward Bhesania

Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House: Premiered at La Scala in 2011 and now receiving its UK premiere, Luca Francesconi's Quartett is an adaptation of Heiner Muller's play of …

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Monday, June 16, 2014

Vert-Vert , Garsington Opera Pavilion, Wormsley Estate, Oxford by Edward Bhesania

Garsington Opera Pavilion, Wormsley Estate, Oxford: Continuing its founder Leonard's Ingrams's questing spirit for neglected corners of the repertoire, Garsington Opera gives the U…

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Monday, May 19, 2014

Eugene Onegin, Glyndebourne, Lewes by Edward Bhesania

Glyndebourne, Lewes: Graham Vick's 1994 production for Glyndebourne, now receiving its third festival revival, takes an objective view of this bald plot of love and rejection. At Larin&…

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