The COC has announced “live” performances for the balance of the 2021/22 season and colour me massively underwhelmed. Obviously, the return to live performance is something we’ve all been waiting for but three dull revival productions of ultra-mainstream operas is not what I had hoped for. For the record here is what’s coming up:
Puccini – Madama Butterfly – February 4th – 25th, 2022. Tghis is the COC production that has been seen umpteen times already at the COC and it has absolutely nothing to say. One had hoped that if and when the COC did this piece again they would come up with a new production that wasn’t so transparently colonialist.
Verdi – La Traviata – April 23rd – May 20th, 2022. Another basically dull, traditional production though, at least, as Douglas Adams might say “mostly harmless”.
Mozart – The Magic Flute – May 6th – 21st, 2022. This is the production that the original director called “feminist” though anything “feminist” or, indeed, “anythingist” has escaped me on the multiple occasions I’ve seen it.
So there it is. Looks like a “lowest common denominator” approach to luring back the traditional crowd. It’s certainly hard to see how it helps with reaching out to new audiences or to achieving any of the bold goals of diversity, inclusion and telling stories relevant to today’s audience that were bruited so loud during lockdown.