We are warned before entering that we will experience strobe lights, a strange sensation when sitting in a big opera house. Besides the visual effects, atmospheric breathing noises are heard and throughout the performance masked demons sneak and run about on stage.
Kirill Karabits is an energetic conductor who seems to love being in the pit, and he gets a big sound from the the small orchestra. The cast is made up of impressive talent, with Iain Paterson in the lead role, bellowing maliciously as the callous Don Giovanni.
Brindley Sherratt is the most convincing actor on stage as the greasy sidekick, Leporello. He is surprisingly hilarious as well as vocally brilliant. I particularly enjoyed his catalogue aria that director Rufus Norris re-imagines as a doctor’s statistical presentation; clever timing provides the audience with many laughs.
Don Giovanni is a long opera, but with Mozart’s lyrical melodies and sharp wit it is always a winner. This new production at the ENO presents the opera in a completely unique and even shocking light.
Don Giovanni continues at The Colliseum until 3 December 2010, book Don Giovanni tickets here.