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Performer: Gesine Völlm

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LondonJenůfaNew production

Janáček: Jenůfa
Henrik Nánási; Claus Guth; The Royal Opera; Michael Levine; Gesine Völlm; James Farncombe; Asmik Grigorian
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Why, why, why Dalila? More disappointment at Unter den Linden

Daniel Barenboim conducts an underwhelming cast in the Staatsoper's new Samson et Dalila, and Argentinian director Damián Szifron's operatic debut is stale and cliché-ridden. 
**111
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Handel’s Ariodante in Drottningholm's magical setting

A splendid cast led by Ann Hallenberg does justice to an integral version of Handel’s masterpiece under the baton of Ian Page.
****1
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All the world's a stage: Xerxes as a comedy of backstage rivalry

A revival of Stefan Herheim's production of Handel's Xerxes in Düsseldorf makes for a rip-roaring evening of theatrical comedy.
****1
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A conceptually bold Manon at Oper Köln

This production fell just short of brilliance but showed how relevant and thought-provoking opera as an art form can be when tapping into today's headline debates.
****1
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Baroque bawdiness at Komische Oper Berlin

With many costume changes, notably into a Sun-King with very prominent phalic sunburst, Houtzeel held centre-stage in the title role.
****1
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Herheim’s lavish Vêpres siciliennes returns

A mural depicting Etna erupting is the only hint of Sicily in Stefan Herheim’s opulent staging, returning to Covent Garden for the first time since the Royal Opera’s Verdi bicentenary celebrations in 2013. 
****1
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