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In the booklet to Einstein, Glass makes the point that the innovative work he and Wilson created has been pushed to one side by Hollywood realism in theatre and opera. Andrea Chénier, filmed last year at Covent Garden, is a prime example of this. Finding David McVicar’s production a rather emotionally muted and visually spartan affair in the opera house, I think it comes across very handsomely on film. If the thought of Glass fills you with dread, this is probably for you (and indeed vice versa). It’s traditional, opulent and glossy from gavotte to guillotine: you almost expect it to star Norma Shearer and Tyrone Power with ‘Gowns by Adrian’. Instead you get Jonas Kaufmann, Eva-Maria Westbroek and detailed frocks by Jenny Tiramani. The tenor is brooding and heroic, the soprano miscast and vocally stretched by the attack the role requires. As the baritone baddie, Željko Lucic is a sturdy if unexciting Gérard. The supporting cast throws themselves into it with some zeal and Antonio Pappano keeps it all under control from the pit. At times it veers towards the Carry On film Don’t Lose Your Head, but Kaufmann’s intense sincerity keeps it anchored.

Francis Muzzu Read the full review on Agora Classica

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Opera Now, 2016 - ©Rhinegold Publishing