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  • Your Reaction: What did you think of Monteverdi's The Return of Ulysses?

Your Reaction: What did you think of Monteverdi's The Return of Ulysses?

Audience reactions and press reviews to Monteverdi's opera, performed at the Roundhouse.

By Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media))

11 January 2018 at 3.30pm | 9 Comments

Press reviews:
Independent ★★★★★
Arts Desk ★★★★
Telegraph ★★★★
What's On Stage ★★★★
Bachtrack ★★

What did you think of The Return of Ulysses?
Add your review in the comments below.

The Return of Ulysses runs until 21 January. Tickets are still available.

The performance is a co-production with Roundhouse and is staged with generous philanthropic support from Stefan Sten Olsson.

By Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media))

11 January 2018 at 3.30pm

This article has been categorised Opera and tagged by John Fulljames, Social Media, The Return of Ulysses, your reaction

This article has 9 comments

  1. Roger Going responded on 11 January 2018 at 9:57pm Reply

    They were truly stunning performances. I applaud their singing & the portrayal, with near to perfection delivery! Good supporting cast too!

  2. francois responded on 12 January 2018 at 1:43pm Reply

    I really enjoyed the performance. Direction is very efficient, theatrical, with magical lights and a good balance between poetry and comedy. Musically it is almost perfect. The only small drawback is the need to amplify the sound artificially: though the technology that is used is of high quality and very discrete, I sometimes had difficulties to identify who was singing and from where, as spatialisation is always the weak point of sound amplification.
    But overall it is a truly enjoyable evening and I highly recommend this production - perhaps I will come back at one of the next performance!-.

  3. Ann Inglis responded on 13 January 2018 at 3:09pm Reply

    I was doubtful at the start, the cast appeared all to be dressed in khaki, were we seeing Kneehigh’s Unloved, or was the Royal Opera saving money on staging? Then at the introduction end, Ulysses leaving the stage walked towards a strong beam of light which also picked out Penelope in the distance. The lighting over the audience dimmed and the opera soared away.

    Penelope and Ulysses’s separation during their final duet was so poignant.

    I hope the Royal Opera, completes the opus with The Coronation of Popea. I would love it to be sung in Italian though. I can’t imagine Nero and Popea’s duet in English, yes yes, yes yes, yes completely lacks the sensuousness of Si Si, Si Si, Si.

  4. Geoff responded on 15 January 2018 at 9:43pm Reply

    Another failed production by the untalented Fulljames. Read the Bachtrack review, that gets this right. We left.

  5. It's a shame that Geoff read the Bachtrack review and left early if he had looked at most of the reviews he would have seen four and five star ratings. Plays to see.com explain the Opera Superbly. Recommended.

    • Geoff responded on 18 January 2018 at 7:15pm

      Thanks E.A. for suggesting I neither read nor research. In fact I read all the reviews - including comment not linked to by ROH - and formed the view that Bachtrack best covered the variously incompetent evening we suffered some 75% of.

      Staying for three quarters of a show is not what I call leaving "early". The bulk of the many - some two dozen - departees did go at the interval but we gritted our teeth and tried to make it to the end. No dice, we just couldn't bear any more so slipped out.

      Roderick Williams has a lovely voice, which we mostly couldn't hear. And Fulljames is some kind of anti-talent, who leaves one knowing less about a work then before. Enough.

  6. Geoff responded on 19 January 2018 at 11:19am Reply

    PS Further to above, my point (not quite clearly made, I admit) is that Bachtrack is a useful corrective to the more postive reviews.

    We punters have to be careful: there are so many vested interests at play with reviewers (particularly with specialised rep like this), never mind unreliable comments on message boards (sometimes, as is known, friends/family of production teams) that a plain warning can be helpful. Hope all clear now.

  7. Richard Payne responded on 20 January 2018 at 3:34pm Reply

    Loved the opera and the staging. Only critical suggestion is that it might have been better in the original Italian.

    For me Montiverdi could have written an opera based on the Venice telephone directory (had it existed) and I would still love it.

    • Geoff responded on 24 January 2018 at 8:50am

      >>For me Montiverdi could have written an opera based on the Venice telephone directory (had it existed) and I would still love it.

      ...which rather makes the point for me: we, the non-partisan audience, need to be careful about relying on enthusiastic support, reviews etc. My guess is that, however good or bad the production, you would still praise this show, seeing as it is by Monteverdi.

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