Just in from a night at the my local cinema. Not for a Hollywood blockbuster but a live relay from the Royal Opera House, London of a new production of Mozart's Don Giovanni. It isn't the same as being at Covent Garden Nah, of course not -in many respects, it is better.
For starters, you get to see opening action in the pit. What an interesting baton technique Nicola Luisotti had in the overture. (Don't be confused by the feminine ending) And we get Bryn (sigh!) as warm up man. During the interval he conducted a blokey interview with Danish director and CEO Kaspar Holten. On Met Live relays, I have never understood why Renée Fleming or Deborah Voigt are allowed to conduct interviews with characters in costume moments after they step into the wings having committed dastardly deeds thereby spoiling the illusion somewhat. Interview directors, set designers etc. by all means but let the performers enjoy their fag break, I say.
There is a roundup of the broadsheet reviews here I agree with Kasper Holten. Don Giovanni looked like Johnny Depp. While there was splendid singing from all principals, my favourite performance was Elizabeth Watts . She was perfect as Zerlina ! Cast details here http://www.roh.org.uk/showings/don-giovanni-2014
The production was interesting with extensive use of projected images which I liked for the most part. The camera work was good. You get to see the faces without peering into your opera glasses. the ending was somewhat anticlimactic and I longed for some deus ex machina to add some drama to the finale but all in all this was a terrific evening's entertainment for a modest fee without the obligation to dress up.
Note to Odeon Cinemas : Why aren't you promoting this fantastic entertainment more actively. You have to know what you are looking for when searching your website as it is hidden away in special screenings. I found one tweet about a week before the event on the Odeon twitter feed. I missed screenings I would love to have attended because even though I checked the website, I couldn't easily find the information I needed. And why no wifi in the cinema?
It would have been nice to share in the #rohdongiovanni twitter experience in the interval.