Saturday, November 10, 2007

Zandra Rhode's new Aida has no clothes


After the fiasco of Kismet and Carmen today's Guardian reports on the triumphal farce of English National Opera's new Aida:

Imported from Houston, it's directed by Jo Davies, while sets and costumes are the work of fashion designer Zandra Rhodes. Such is the palaver surrounding Rhodes's contribution - you can even get an e-card with a doll (see above) of one of the characters you can dress up - that the uninitiated might reach the conclusion that Aida is about frocks and bling rather than an examination of how political and religious authority can rot the lives of those who are close to the seats of temporal power yet unable to wield it. Neither director Jo Davies nor Rhodes has taken the piece seriously, and what we are presented with is a gaudy, insubstantial spectacle, and a messy one at that.

What next from ENO? - 'Classical Star the Opera' as a co-production with BBC TV?
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