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Krzysztof Warlikowski’s Wozzeck was filmed in Amsterdam in 2017 and offers a precise and almost dispassionate view of Berg’s masterpiece. Christopher Maltman’s Wozzeck is quietly alienated, withdrawn into himself, physically still and all the more menacing for it. Eva-Maria Westbroek’s Marie is the opposite, striding with chutzpah, erupting with emotion and frustration. His aggression is internalised, hers is loud and obvious. Warlikowski cleverly confuses his audience: often we are unsure in a scene whether we are seeing reality or an expression of Wozzeck’s inner turmoil. We see Wozzeck spurned as a child during ballroom dancing competitions; we also see Marie’s son following him through the opera, similarly alienated (and remarkably well-performed by the young Jacob Jutte). The single set is adaptable and creates a unified aesthetic; hard, shiny, uncompromising. The grotesque supporting roles are all brilliantly taken, just avoiding exaggeration. Maltman and Westbroek have both found hugely rewarding roles for their talents, and Marc Albrecht conducts with a blend of precision balanced with an almost bel canto grace.

Francis Muzzu Read the full review on Agora Classica


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