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Instrument: Ensemble (vocal and orchestral)

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Aix-en-ProvenceDido and Aeneas

Purcell: Dido and Aeneas
Václav Luks; Vincent Huguet; Aurélie Maestre; Caroline de Vivaise; Kelebogile Besong; Sophia Burgos

Aix-en-ProvenceDie Zauberflöte

Trial by water: Stanislas de Barbeyrac (Tamino), Mari Eriksmoen (Pamina) © Pascal Victor | artcompress
Mozart: Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute)
Raphaël Pichon; Simon McBurney; Michael Levine; Nicky Gillibrand; Stanislas de Barbeyrac; Mari Eriksmoen

DubrovnikSmall Gifts of Heaven

Bach, Vivaldi, Handel
Dorothee Oberlinger; Andreas Scholl; Ensemble 1700

Saint-PaulienItalie sacrée

Perez, d'Astorga, Durante
Giulio Prandi; Ghislieri Choir & Consort

La Chaise-DieuHaendel romain

Handel, Bononcini
Giulio Prandi; Ghislieri Choir & Consort

LondonGabrieli Consort & Players - The Fairy Queen

Purcell: The Fairy Queen
Paul McCreesh; Gabrieli Consort & Players; Carolyn Sampson; Anna Dennis; Mhairi Lawson

LondonRemembrance

Pärt, Parry, Mozart
London Choral Sinfonia; Kim-Lillian Strebel; Anna Harvey; Nick Pritchard
Latest reviewsSee more...

Putting the magic back into Zauberflöte at Aix

Trial by water: Stanislas de Barbeyrac (Tamino), Mari Eriksmoen (Pamina) © Pascal Victor | artcompress
McBurney's brilliant stagecraft brings child-like wonderment to the most hardened adults; his interpretation and Raphaël Pichon's conducting exude Mozartian rightness.
*****
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Pastel-perfect hell: To See The Invisible

Nicholas Morris (The Invisible) © Stephen Cummiskey
Emily Howard's new opera, an Aldeburgh Festival commission, takes an ambitiously modernist approach to a dystopian story of loneliness: a tough, but thought-provoking work. 
****1
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Russia meets France: Lully’s Phaéton in Versailles

Victoire Bunel (Théone) © Andrey Chuntomov
A successful musical production of Lully’s masterpiece with Perm Opera’s MusicAeterna chorus and orchestra, Le Poème Harmonique, and a tremendous French-Russian cast.
****1
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Proms at... Wilton’s: Conference of the Birds

Marcus Farnsworth performs Eight Songs for a Mad King © BBC | Mark Allan
The Birmingham Contemporary Music Group present an ambitious mixture of experimental chamber music and disquieting monodrama. 
***11
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A Trip to the Moon misses its lift-off

A Trip to the Moon by Andrew Norman © Tim Whitby | Getty Images for the London Symphony Orchestra
Under Sir Simon Rattle’s baton, Andrew Norman’s children’s opera struggles to find either terrene or otherworldly land.
**111
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Immersive Monteverdi: Vespers in 360-degree surround

The Gashouder © Ruth Walz
Until now I have been fairly sceptical about theatrical stagings of oratorios and other sacred works, so I was curious but cautious about the staging of Monteverdi's Vespers at the Holland Festival.
*****
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Handel's Esther at the Halle Festival

La Risonanza and the Capella Cracoviensis Choir © Stiftung Händel-Haus
Overall a good performance of Handel's oratorio Esther at the Halle Festival, but some problems with the soloists unfortunately let it down.
***11
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