This year’s intimate opera festival Tête à Tête promises to be ‘a scream’
24 May, 2018 — By Sebastian Taylor
Toscastrope, on August 2 in Cubitt square, promises to ‘massacre another opera classic’
The grand Tête à Tête festival is back at King’s Cross venues this summer, with multiple short operas over the period from July 16 to August 18.
“Whatever we have coming up for you, we can guarantee it’ll be a scream,” says festival artistic director Bill Bankes-Jones. “Opera is not only the most complex, but also the most visceral of art forms,” he says. “Unless its driver is something that forces a raw primal cri de coeur, it makes no sense. That’s why the most common drivers are sex or death – though we’ve seen many others over the years at Tête à Tête.”
Highlights of this year’s festival free offerings at Cubitt Square, Stable Street, King’s Cross, include:
• Thursday, July 26, 6.30pm: BISHI: the Good Immigrant – a song cycle of six new songs for voice, looper, sitar and electronics
• Friday, July 27, 6.30pm: Composer Errollyn Wallen and her band perform a continually evolving set of Ivor Novello award-winning songs.
• Thursday, August 2, 6.30pm: Unusual three part piece by Juice Vocal Ensemble. Juice’s a cappella classical, folk and pop meets Roshi’s Welsh-Iranian torch songs meets electronica from Pars Radio.
• Thursday, August 9, 6.30pm: Nightshade: Aubergine was originally conceived as a “music theatre road movie”. The piece is about the worldwide search by documentary maker Lisa Tahon and soprano Claron Mcfadden for our common roots by way of following the migration history of the aubergine. Together, they travelled to Turkey, Greece, Italy, Spain and Morocco on the trail of the aubergine, learning traditional songs along the way.
• Friday, August 10: Toscastrope is billed as another nightmare evening where another opera classic is massacred. Will Tosca leap to her death off the Castel Sant’Angelo? Will magnificent singing be ruined by hideously ear-splitting recorder playing?