RODERIC DUNNETT visits
Garsington Opera at Wormsley
It was in the wake of the five-decade success of Glyndebourne that in 1989 the late Leonard Ingrams, younger brother of Private Eye Editor and Oldie Founder Richard Ingrams, decided to turn over his delightful Jacobean mansion at Garsington, once the out-of-Oxford haunt of T S Eliot, Siegfried Sassoon and other literary worthies, to the staging of opera, for three weeks.
Ingrams' legacy lives on in the regular series of operas still performed under the Garsington imprimatur, albeit now at a venue further afield: including, this season, Offenbach (for only the second time, following La Périchole in 2012): his little known divertissement Vert-Vert, written for performance in 1869 at L'Opéra-Comique in Paris.
This was staged alongside Janáček's The Cunning Little Vixen (with ever-reliable Trinity Boys' Choir, from Croydon, supplying some of the woodland action; they have already been fairies in A Midsummer Night's Dream, mysterious boys in The Magic Flute; and will reprise their role as bewitched gingerbread children in this year's Garsington Emerging Artists offshoot Hansel and Gretel). Lastly comes a revival of Garsington's serviceable 2009 Fidelio, under Artistic Director and Conductor Douglas Boyd with a cast including Peter Wedd as Florestan, Darren Jeffery as Pizarro and Stuttgart Opera's Rebecca von Lipinski returning as Leonora...
Copyright © 23 June 2014