Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Giuseppe MacVerdi

It's going to be a hot summer. Whenever the first Glyndebourne dress rehearsal is cold & wet, the weather for the rest of the season is glorious. Yesterday, we pinicked in the car with a thermos flask of soup.

Suitably atmospheric, of course, for the Scotland of Verdi's Macbeth. Hmm. Last year I thought that Betrothal in a Monastery was about to become the hottest ticket in town, but it wasn't, so I won't risk my luck this time. Suffice it to say that IMHO Richard Jones's production is startling, fresh, original, clever and a treat for anyone who likes hairy knees. And I'll never be able to look at a cardboard box in the same way again. Vladimir Jurowski's conducting is red-hot, seat-of-the-pants stuff and the singing - Andrzej Dobber as Macbeth and Sylvie Valayre as his blonde-beehived Lady Macbeth - is top-notch.

Debate will probably rage over whether Macbeth is this full of irony and black humour, and no doubt many will think not...but, weirdly enough, the production suits Verdi's remarkably effervescent score and I found the second half both powerful and moving.