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Work: The Queen of Spades (Pique Dame)

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Fact file
ComposerTchaikovsky, Pyotr Ilyich (1840-1893)
PeriodRomantic
Year1890
Work typeOpera / Oratorio
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LondonRussian Opera Gala and 10th Jubilee Event

Listing filler
Tchaikovsky, Verdi, Bizet, Mozart, Borodin, Rossini, Bulakhov, Yuryev, Traditional Russian, Arensky
Camerata Tchaikovsky; Oleg Soldatov; Oleg Pogudin; Askar Abdrazakov; Mikail Kazinik; Alexander Naumenko

ParisLa Dame de PiqueNew production

Tchaikovsky: The Queen of Spades (Pique Dame)
Daniel Barenboim; Dmitri Tcherniakov; Opéra national de Paris; Oksana Lyniv; Elena Zaytseva; Brandon Jovanovich
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The Queen of Spades plays her cards right in Naples

Misha Didyk (Hermann) and Anna Nechaeva (Lisa) © Luciano Romano e Francesco Squeglia
Willy Decker does not try to make the structure of the plot any clearer, mainly concentrating on the deeper meaning of the work. The cast was excellent.
*****
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Tchaikovsky’s tale of dark obsession sparkles with notable Met debuts

Igor Golovatenko (Yeletsky) and Lise Davidsen (Lise) © Ken Howard | Met Opera
The young soprano Lise Davidsen scored a successful debut at the Met, with impressive support by conductor Vasily Petrenko, also making a debut, led a memorable revival of Pique Dame
****1
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A tale of many Tchaikovskys: The Queen of Spades at ROH

Vladimir Stoyanov (Yeletsky / Tchaikovsky) © ROH | Catherine Ashmore
Herheim places the composer at the centre of his opera in a staging that's clever and erudite but somewhat cold; musical performances are mixed.
***11
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Jansons trumps Neuenfels' tame Pique Dame in Salzburg

Evgenia Muraveva (Lisa) and Brandon Jovanovich (Hermann) © Monika Rittershaus
Mariss Jansons and the Vienna Philharmonic do the real storytelling as Hans Neuenfels' staging underwhelms.
***11
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Staging, spectacle, singing: three-card trick at Savonlinna

Misha Didyk (Hermann) © Valtteri Hirvonen
This was more stadium rock than stuffy opera house, lighting as ‘metaphor made real’ as the lovers were – literally – star-struck, blinded by love.
****1
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