For around fifty evenings each summer, it also plays host to beauty of a rather different type. Opera Holland Park, based under an enclosed canopy, produces half a dozen productions a year. With a focus on rarities of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, some of its productions are once in a lifetime experiences. All are performed to a very high standard, and are amongst the highlight of London's summertime calendar.
Opera Holland Park 2015
This year, Opera Holland Park will present six productions, all of which promise something unique. It opens with ll trittico (June 2nd to 27th) by Giacomo Puccini, the master of the verismo genre that has come to been seen as one of the festival’s specialties. As its name suggests, it is a triptych, fusing three one-act operas that cover the whole gamut of styles and emotions. There’s the violently tragic Il tabarro, set in 1910s Paris; the dark but redemptive Italian Renaissance melodrama Suor Angelica; and the medieval farce Gianni Schicchi, based on a scene from Dante.
Puccini’s classic is followed by a new production of Flight (June 6th – 19th), a signature work of prolific contemporary composer Jonathan Dove. Set over the course of the day, it tracks a group of characters stranded in an airport due to bad weather. Although broadly comic, it deals with serious modern problems – not least those of the refugee, unable to leave due to lacking a passport.
The festival’s centrepiece is Verdi’s Aida (June 24th – July 24th), one of the grandest of all operas. Set in Ancient Egypt, is the archetypical tragic romance, buffeted by mighty choruses and intimate arias. The bold, forceful soprano Gweneth-Ann Jeffers takes on the title role.
Léo Delibes’ Lakmé (July 9th – 31st), another exotic showpiece, deserves to be known for more than its ‘Flower Duet.’ Set in colonial India, it follows the doomed romance between a princess and her British soldier lover. On the 27th, it will be performed by up-and-coming musicians in the annual Christine Collins Young Artist Performance.
The season will close with a revival of a 2007 production often regarded as one of the festival’s all time greats – L’amore dei tre Re (July 22nd – August 1st). Composed by the now almost forgotten Italo Montemezzi in the early 20th century, it is a morbid tragedy in the mould of Jacobean theatre, giddily building up to a gory climax
In addition to these five adult productions, 2015 sees the third successive appearance of Will Todd’s open-air Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, which will run during the daytime from July 16th to August 1st. Dubbed “the most charming, least condescending opera for children I have seen” by The Telegraph, it is a surefire delight for the whole family.
|What||Opera Holland Park 2015|
|Nearest tube||Holland Park (underground)|
02 Jun 15 – 08 Aug 15, 12:00 AM
|Website||Click here to book via Holland Park Opera|