MARK BERRY experiences
English National Opera's 'Madama Butterfly'
Many readers will doubtless already have seen the late Anthony Minghella's Madam Butterfly, now revived by Sarah Tipple, whether at the Coliseum, at the Met, or even in Vilnius. This, however [21 October 2013, London Coliseum, UK], was my first viewing, and I found it rather impressive. There are any number of ways in which one might in performance respond to Puccini's deeply problematical orientalism, though simply failing to do so and reproducing or rather vulgarising it is surely no longer an option, if ever it really were. Minghella's staging, aided immensely by the rest of his collaborative team, offers a convincing blend of abstraction, stylisation, and moments through which more conventional, if highly disturbing, emotion, may flow like blood -- or like the scarlet, silken banners unfurled by actors and dancers...
Copyright © 24 October 2013