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My First Opera

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#11 The Glenbuck Laird

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 09:49 PM

Can't go wrong with La Boheme. Good entry level opera.

#12 Reich

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Posted 27 April 2013 - 10:57 AM

As others have already said go for ENO's Bohme

Lots of ticket offers around for this, but dont let that put you off as it's really excellent.

A lot of the staging takes place on upper levels so plump for the dress circle

I hope you enjoy it :-)

Broadway has been very good to me. But then, I've been very good to broadway.


#13 Frogette

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 11:40 PM

To everyone that replied - a huge thank you.  It seems to be a resounding vote for La Boheme.  I'll book it tomorrow and post again to say how I got on.

#14 stitcher

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 12:57 PM

ENO Boheme is a lovely production - I myself found the sound improves the higher up you go in the Coliseum auditorium, so would go for dress circle or upper circle rather than stalls.

#15 Epicoene

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 01:27 PM

I decided I'd give opera a try when I was around the same age. I prepared by listening to the music in advance. It was "Sir John in Love" so I knew the plot well. The director was Ian Judge who had previously directed good RSC productions of Comedy of Errors and (I think) Merry Wives. It was at the ENO. It was very disappointing due to the laughably feeble standard of the acting and the prehistoric staging - scenery arrayed round the edge of the stage and the actors marching on to an empty centre stage, facing forward, and delivering their lines (like David Hare's lamentable direction of King Lear). The last 5 minutes of chorus singing were OK. Shan't be going again any time soon - might try Wagner when I retire.

#16 mallardo

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 01:59 PM

The acting is better these days, and so are the production values.  The Sky Arts Channel broadcasts a lot of opera - especially the Live From The Met telecasts.  Many of them are quite fabulous.
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#17 FireFingers

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 02:39 PM

There is a lot of variety in opera. I have seen some "park and bark" peformances, with as little acting as possible, but plenty that don't and fully engage. It's why I love Jonathan Miller's direction. He doesn't allow people to not act, all his productions have to be "real". No gigantic arm waving or singing about how you have lost the love of your life whilst your face is saying "What shall I have for my tea?"

#18 Honoured Guest

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 02:42 PM

Also, La boheme is a good first choice for you because it's a revival of Jonathan Miller's production which is in the style of traditional theatre.

#19 Epicoene

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 05:35 PM

View Postmallardo, on 29 April 2013 - 01:59 PM, said:

The acting is better these days

I doubt it has improved much since 2006 which is when I saw it.

#20 Coated peanut

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Posted 04 May 2013 - 08:22 PM

I think it's worth booking a good cast & comfortable enough seats for a first opera. I saw Florez and Natalie Dessay in La Fille de Regiment as my first opera and was hooked ever since, but if I'd seen some of the clunkers I've seen since as my first I'd avoid opera for live.

Orchestra and sound-wise I think Covent Garden definitely has the edge over the ENO, and to me Italian or French operas just don't work as well in English as in their original language.





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