Hytner Goes Operatic with Handel???
Date: 12 January 2004
With the Royal Opera House and English National Opera dipping a toe into traditionally musical waters with, respectively, Stephen Sondheim and Gilbert and Sullivan, why shouldn’t the National Theatre take a dive in the opera deep end? Of course, it’s already scored an award-winning hit with Jerry Springer - The Opera, but now artistic director Nicolas Hytner would like to have the National tackle more classical fare. In a panel discussion broadcast on BBC Radio Three today, Hytner hinted that a Handel opera is on the cards for the South Bank complex, though he wouldn’t specify which one. Other panellists – including ROH music director Antonio Pappano, whose programming last month of Sweeney Todd made history as the first musical presented on the Covent Garden main stage since it opened in 1892 – agreed that the future must embrace a more wide-ranging definition of “musical theatre” that encompassed both art forms. With that in mind, some of the musicals suggested for ROH production were Carousel, Passion, Into the Woods and Brigadoon.
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