Buxton Opera Festival

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July 18th 2018
Published: July 18th 2018
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Monday in Buxton.

A festival day today, we went to a fringe theatre, one woman show based on the story of The Green Knight. This is one of the Arthurian tales I have come across from reading Mallory’s Mort D’Arthur. The actor did an enthralling presentation of the story told from the point of view of The Green Knight’s Wife. It was in a small theatre seating about twenty people so it was quite intimate. A memorable experience.

Our second opera of the festival was the daughter of the regiment. This was reset from a French regiment in the Tyrol, sung in French, to a motorcycle gang in California, sung in English. It was done by a small chamber opera company (Opera della Luna) on a shoestring so, given that they weren’t going to put a regiment on stage, the resetting worked for us. Donizetti’s music was changed very little but the libretto was obviously much adapted. We did strike people who did not like it but there is always a conflict with those who only tolerate “traditional productions”. We both know this opera well and have seen it in many guises so something a little different was welcome. It was well done.

Tuesday was a day of string quartets. We had the Fitzwilliam quartet in the morning. Then the Consone quartet, then the two together playing Mendelsohn’s octet. The Octet was an original version slightly different from the accepted version we often hear. A talk prior to the Octet giving a history of the piece with lots of sample snippets played by the musicians. Again, something you can probably only do at a festival where you can assume a specialist audience.


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