Dido: a Funeral for the Queen of Carthage reviews

Dido: a Funeral for the Queen of Carthage reviews

Reviews of Dido & Aeneas

There was a full house at the Barbican for this week’s semi-staged production of Dido: a funeral for the Queen of Carthage, as we brought to life Purcell’s opera with the aid of some rather splendid puppets (captured in the photos above by Mark Allen). Stage director Thomas Guthie and Richard Egarr presented a first half with music by Purcell suitable for a royal funeral, with the opera in the second half, acting as a ‘flashback’ explaining Dido’s demise.

Read what the critics had to say:

“… the AAM showed with poise and flair how Purcell’s writing dances with extraordinary grace and inventiveness over the chugging bass lines underneath. Hats off, in particular, to the two theorbos… with their celestial raindrops of sound.” THE ARTS DESK

“With these [soloists] at the helm the puppets easily became, in Guthrie’s words, “magical engineers of our imaginations”. THE TIMES

“…the lightly-sprung poise of the AAM’s support” CLASSICAL SOURCE

“Egarr led his musicians with dynamic gusto, leaping to his feet to whip up instrumental rejoicing and tempests… shaping the tempos and phrasing with natural ease and control.” OPERA TODAY

“It hurt in all the right places, a deeply moving performance… in keeping with the production’s restraint” BACHTRACK

“The AAM’s haunting sound was the thread that held the evening together.” SEEN AND HEARD