Michael Tanner

No laughing matter | 25 October 2012

About two of the operas I saw in Leeds this week there is a serious question as to whether or not they are comedies. The third, Gounod’s Faust, is clearly not meant to be; I’ll be writing about it next week. The new production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni by Alessandro Talevi is jokey and fast — or, anyway, the arias and ensembles are fast, the recitatives less so — but it’s not particularly funny, and what humour there is would certainly not have been available to da Ponte and Mozart: peasants rocking and rolling in the finale to Act I,...

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