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Performer: Susan Bickley

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LondonBartók and Strauss: Dances of Desire

© Peter Knutson
Bartók, Strauss R.
Philharmonia Orchestra; Jakub Hrůša; Malin Byström; Susan Bickley; Peter Hoare; Philharmonia Voices

LondonLyric Solitude: Programme 1

Poulenc, Argento
James Conway; English Touring Opera; Paula Sides; Julien Van Mellaerts; Susan Bickley; Ella O'Neill
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LeedsDie Walküre Act 2

Kelly Cae Hogan (Brünnhilde) and Robert Hayward (Wotan) © Clive Barda
Wagner: Die Walküre
Richard Farnes; Peter Mumford; Opera North; Michael Weinius; James Creswell; Robert Hayward; Lee Bisset

LeedsGötterdämmerung Prologue & Act 1

Mati Turi (Siegfried) © Clive Barda
Wagner: Götterdämmerung
Richard Farnes; Peter Mumford; Opera North; Mati Turi; Kelly Cae Hogan; Andrew Foster-Williams; Giselle Allen

High WycombeThe Skating RinkWorld Première

Alice Poggio (Skater) © Johan Persson
Sawer: The Skating Rink
Garry Walker; Stewart Laing; Garsington Opera Company; Hyemi Shin; Grant Doyle; Sam Furness
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Royal Opera's A New Dark Age is a powerful cantata for our time

Peter Brathwaite in The Knife of Dawn © ROH | Tristram Kenton
The Royal Opera House responds to current global turmoil with a double bill by four women composers. Baritone Peter Brathwaite delivers a tour de force in The Knife of Dawn and A New Dark Age is a powerful emotional journey.
***11
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Comedy with knobs on: English National Opera's new Figaro

Colin Judson (Don Basilio), Louise Alder (Susanna) and Johnathan McCullough (Count Almaviva) © Marc Brenner
A witty, insightful production at the Coliseum fizzes with comedy and pathos. 
****1
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True Grimes: a gripping semi-staging of Britten’s opera

Erin Wall (Ellen), Stuart Skelton (Peter Grimes) and Samuel Winter (John) © Mark Allan | Southbank Centre

A psychologically penetrating semi-staging of Britten’s Peter Grimes from leading soloists, the Bergen Philharmonic and its chief conductor Ed Gardner laid bare the opera’s music and drama.

****1
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The Grange Festival's Falstaff hits all the right notes

Robert Hayward (Falstaff) © Clive Barda
Comic opera can fall flat, but if The Grange Festival's new production of Verdi's final masterpiece is a total delight, with a strong concept and a strong cast. This is country-house opera at its best.
*****
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Two great debuts, not enough drama: Katya Kabanova at ROH

Amanda Majeski (Katya) © ROH | Clive Barda
Amanda Majeski is magnificent in the title role; Ed Gardner shows total master of Janáček's music. But that's not enough to rescue a poorly thought out Richard Jones production.
***11
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The Silver Tassie makes a triumphant return

Ashley Riches and Louise Alder © BBC | Jamie Simonds
Mark-Anthony Turnage's First World War opera both moves and dazzles at the Barbican.
*****
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