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Performer: Lee Blakeley

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Lessons from Europe in a fun-filled Fledermaus

Die Fledermaus © Julie Howden | RCS
Eisenstein is a Tory Minister out of his depth on a European mission. Mischief and fun galore in RCS’s well sung Die Fledermaus, a fitting tribute to Timothy Dean as he stands down as Head of Opera.
****1
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Bloody fun with Sweeney Todd

Brian Mulligan (Sweeney Todd) and Stephanie Blythe (Mrs Lovett) © Cory Weaver | San Francisco Opera
San Francisco Opera's production of Sweeney Todd brings nothing new to the musical, but the cast includes wonderful surprises – most notably Stephanie Blythe's Mrs Lovett.
****1
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Santa Fe Rigoletto offers a gimmick-free Mantua

Quinn Kelsey (Rigoletto) © Ken Howard
Quinn Kelsey's Rigoletto is commanding, emotional and complex. His bass-baritone has all the qualities you could ask for – darkness and light.
****1
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New LA Opera Falstaff is a merry treat

In the bicentenary anniversary of Giuseppe Verdi, tributes are aplenty. On Saturday evening, Los Angeles Opera presented a new production of the Italian master’s final work, Falstaff, though that wasn’t all.
****1
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A star-studded Faust at the Royal Opera

In this Royal Opera production of Gounod's Faust, there's no question about who's in charge. Not only does the devil get all the best lines, but he bosses the show from beginning to end. Clad in feathered hat, long curly wig and reminiscent of the Laughing Cavalier, René Pape plays Mephistopheles quite superbly, alternating between mercurial bouffe comic lines and extreme sardonic nastiness.
***11
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