Monday, December 07, 2015

Pinchgut Opera - why the critics rave

Program cover
Pinchgut Opera is an unlikely sort of name for a company that performs Baroque and early Classical operas but it sticks in your mind, especially when it keeps reappearing with rave reviews.  Yesterday was the first time I have seen them perform and now I know what all the fuss is about. They are just so refreshing!

As I watched them perform Grétry's L'amant Jaloux I couldn't help thinking that their performance must have been very similar to those in the Baroque period. It is a fascinating glimpse into that world, as well as begin a comical and ravishingly sung romp.

The opera is part spoken, but unusually (for me at least) that didn't detract at all from the performance. Perhaps it was because the parts were spoken so beautifully and so theatrically? Perhaps people who sing gloriously (and they all did) bring a special resonance to spoken parts?  I am not sure, but they were all so captivating that the spoken and sung parts melded seamlessly into a whole in the most wonderful way.

Pinchgut was established in 2002 and performed an opera a year until 2014 when they put on two operas. I  heard one of those two (Iphigenia) on the radio and had been so captivated that I decided I must find an opportunity to see them this year. Now I have seen them once, I shall definitely have to go again.
Final bows

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