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Die Zauberflöte, Mozart
D: David McVicar
C: Maxim EmelyanychevRichard Hetherington
The Magic Flute, Royal Opera House review: an ideal if imperfect Christmas prelude

David McVicar’s production of ‘Die Zauberflöte’ is filled with nocturnal high-jinks

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03 November 2019www.independent.co.ukMichael Church
The Magic Flute, Royal Opera House review

Classic production by David McVicar of Mozart's last opera returns to Covent Garden with a new cast and a star turn

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16 September 2021www.culturewhisper.comClaudia Pritchard
The Nose, op. 15, Shostakovich
D: Barrie Kosky
C: Ingo Metzmacher
BWW Review: THE NOSE, Royal Opera House, 20 October 2016

Laughter is a powerful dramatic weapon. Not the kind of laughter you normally get in the Royal Opera House - knowing, self-conscious - but actual inelegant, snorting-before-you-even-realised-it laughter. Kosky harnesses this anarchic force, startling an audience expecting an improving piece of musical modernism by giving them instead a disarming piece of cutthroat comedy.Kosky, in a brilliant sleight of hand, transforms the oversized nose into a mischievous tap-dancing boy. Ilan Galkoff clearly has a ball, and together with his troupe of adult tap dancers (ten in total) they nearly romp off with the piece, thanks to Otto Pichler's superb choreography and the witty designs of Klaus Grunberg.A rash of false noses and some elaborate costumes make it hard to identify many of the players, but the core ensemble make their presence known, relishing the vernacular rough and tumble of David Pountney's new English translation. John Tomlinson leers and lurches and broods as (by turns) the Barber, Newspaper Office Clerk and Doctor, while the double act of Helene Schneiderman and Ailish Tynan forms a deliciously grotesque mother and daughter team. Alexander Kravets's Police Inspector finds comic gold in the composer's extraordinarily demanding vocal writing, and Susan Bickley makes much of her cameo as the Old Countess. But the evening belongs to Martin Winkler, a singing-actor of such skill, whose physical and vocal clowning as the luckless Kovalev - all orifices and ooze in Kosky's hideous portrait - must penetrate this bustling phantasmagoria and make us care. Panto season has arrived early, and for those who like their clowns sad and their comedy sharpened to a point, there won't be a better show this winter.

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21 October 2016www.broadwayworld.comAlexandra Coghlan

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