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Culture Forum

Culture Forum

  1. 16 May '15 23:33

    They show operas both live and on demand, for free, and you don't even have to sign up. I watched Król Roger (King Roger) by Symanowski live tonight since my parents went to the Royal Opera House to see it.

    Note-form review:

    * dramatic, intense
    * unusual-sounding music (albeit an acquired taste, probably)
    * very good set design
    * never before heard an opera sung in Polish
    * the word Król
    * good acting
    * Antonio Pappano did a great and helpful job of explaining and evangelising some of the music during the interval, sitting at his piano (pre-recorded, obviously, as he was conducting)

    * music was fairly impenetrable (for my level of understanding/appreciation)
    * plot was also impenetrable to me
    * religious theme felt too dated
    * inevitable "talking up" by the presenters made me feel a bit disappointed: if they weren't always so positive about everything I might enjoy some more difficult operas more
    * I didn't really connect emotionally with the opera
    * It was hardly a balm for my frazzled mental state; Mozart, Verdi or Puccini would have been
    * I gather the opera was to some extent about the composer's personal struggles; however, I am relatively uninterested in Symanowski the man having never heard of him before tonight

    I had no problems with the stream cutting out except for a couple of times which were probably my fault for overtaxing my computer with other tasks. I'll certainly be watching more operas on this site.