Review Round Up: Rigoletto, Royal Opera House

The Royal Opera House is currently reviving David McVicar’s production of Verdi’s opera. In case you missed, here’s what critics thought…

Rigoletto, court jester to the libertine Duke of Mantua, is cursed by the father of one of the Duke’s victims for his irreverent laughter. When the Duke seduces Rigoletto’s daughter Gilda, it seems the curse is taking effect…

The Guardian: *** “Rigoletto is played by the Greek baritone Dimitri Platanias, imposing on stage, handsome of voice, and deeply touching in his duets with Sofia Fomina’s Gilda, where we get a real sense of Rigoletto’s solicitous affection for his daughter.”

The Stage: *** “the show’s sexual shenanigans are over the top and simultaneously unconvincing.”

WhatsOnStage: *** “Alexander Joel’s curious conducting cannot have helped the singers: he alternated energised surges of tempo with grinding ritardandi into uncomfortable pauses. At least it was a characterful interpretation, however, and the opera buzzed.”

The Telegraph: *** “McVicar’s ominously dark staging holds up well enough, though the opening orgy – toned down in terms of its original quota of nudity, I think, but madly over-active and screechy – went way over the top and landed in the realms of farcical silliness.”

The Independent: *** “Dimitri Platanias brings heft and a fine melodic line to the title role, Sofia Fomina’s Gilda is on the whole ravishingly sung, and in duet their voices soar gracefully.”

Express: **** “Andrea Mastrone is a gloriously villainous Sparafucile and the Russian soprano Sofia Fomina is perfectly cast as Gilda.”

The FT: *** “Alexander Joel conducts with a keen sense of pacing and a light, well-sprung style that makes a nice change.”

Culture Whisper: **** “Rigoletto is a heady, moreish mix of the luscious and the bitter. Cheers!”

The Times: ** “After a racy opening, it’s all downhill for this limp revival of David McVicar’s Verdi staging.”

Bachtrack: *** “An imperfect revival, therefore, but Platanias’ title role performance was excellent ”

MusicOMH: **** “It is the overall strength of the cast that makes this revival of Rigoletto quite special, while the smooth conducting of Alexander Joel also contributes to the success of the evening.”

Londonist: ** “an uncomfortable watch this season; unrelentingly bleak and tired, with cast and conductor, Alexander Joel, seemingly at odds.”

The Daily Mail: *** “David McVicar’s dark production, from 2001, still works well.”

Rigoletto continues to play at the Royal Opera House until the 16th January. To book tickets click here or visit:, See, Encore Tickets  and Theatre Tickets


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