This article is from 2006.
Opening his final Edinburgh Festival programme with a bold stroke on a grand scale, Brian McMaster has chosen Richard Strauss’ one-act opera Elektra. In concert performance, its punch will nonetheless be felt as the opera queen of New Orleans, Jeanne-Michele Charbonnet, takes on one of the most demandingly difficult soprano roles ever written. Conducting the larger than usual RSNO is British conductor Edward Gardner, who makes a return visit to the Festival in the wake of his success last year with John Adams’ Death of Klinghoffer.
Recently appointed as Music Director of English National Opera (who reputedly just beat Scottish Opera to it), Gardner is charged with the challenge of Greek revenge tragedy as expressed through a high point of the German operatic tradition. There’s no love interest, no laughs, just dark, shocking and bloody revenge. (Carol Main)
Usher Hall, 473 2000, 13 Aug, 8pm, £7.50-£42.