Peter Rose

Peter Rose

Peter Rose is the Editor and CEO of Australian Book Review. His books include a family memoir, Rose Boys (2001), which won the National Biography Award in 2003. He has published two novels and six poetry collections, most recently The Subject of Feeling (UWA Publishing, 2015).

Das Rheingold (Opera Australia)

ABR Arts 23 November 2016
Das Rheingold (Opera Australia)
Der Ring des Nibelungen returns to Melbourne three years after its première here. Those three cycles sold out quickly; these ones haven’t, understandably, but the State Theatre seemed pretty full on opening night. Some alterations have been made, but the production is largely intact. Several local singers retain their principal roles, but we have a new Siegmund, Wotan, Loge, Sieglinde, and Brü ... (read more)

Tristan und Isolde (Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra)

ABR Arts 21 November 2016
Tristan und Isolde (Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra)
Rarely has Arts Update sensed such anticipation in a city as it did before Saturday evening’s performance of highlights from Tristan und Isolde in Hobart. Throughout the day – much of it spent at MONA, admiring the new exhibition, On the Origin of Art – we kept meeting operaphiles from the mainland who were keen to find out how the TSO had managed to lure Nina Stemme and Stuart Skelton to Ho ... (read more)

La Bohème and Don Giovanni (Metropolitan Opera)

ABR Arts 13 October 2016
La Bohème and Don Giovanni (Metropolitan Opera)
Franco Zeffirelli’s production of Puccini’s La Bohème (★★★1/2) has been delighting audiences (and enriching the company) since its première in 1981. Many of the world’s greatest singers have appeared in it:- since the first cast, which included Teresa Stratas, José Carreras, Renata Scotto, and James Morris (still with the company today). Even now, Met audiences applaud when the curt ... (read more)

Tristan und Isolde (Metropolitan Opera)

ABR Arts 12 October 2016
Tristan und Isolde (Metropolitan Opera)
‘Throughout the whole duration of the Festival, food forms the chief interest of the public; the artistic representations take a secondary place. Cutlets, baked potatoes, omelettes – all are discussed much more eagerly than Wagner’s music.’ It was hard not to think of Tchaikovsky’s words, written during the first Bayreuth Festival (1876), at the opening night of the Metropolitan Opera ... (read more)

La Bohème and The Pearlfishers (Opera Australia)

ABR Arts 09 May 2016
La Bohème and The Pearlfishers (Opera Australia)
Melbourne's long Indian summer coincided with Opera Australia's 2016 autumn season. It began with a revival of La Bohème (★★★) and the new production of The Pearlfishers (★★★★1/2) (first seen in Sydney earlier this year). The much-anticipated Luisa Miller with Nicole Car (which I reviewed in February 2016) will follow next week. Giacomo Puccini does not seem to have been ... (read more)

Lucia di Lammermoor (Victorian Opera) and Turandot (Opera Australia)

ABR Arts 14 April 2016
Lucia di Lammermoor (Victorian Opera) and Turandot (Opera Australia)
The speed with which Gaetano Donizetti wrote his operas almost defies belief, especially in our more leisurely age of composition. Don Pasquale (1843), as we know, was written in eleven days. When Donizetti, newly contracted to Teatro San Carlo, fetched up in Naples in May 1835, he had already written fifty operas. He was thirty-seven years old. Recent triumphs included Anna Bolena (1830), L'elisi ... (read more)

The Lady in the Van

ABR Arts 29 February 2016
The Lady in the Van
The Lady in the Van may be a great comic character, but she is one of the unlikelier Britons ever to earn a blue plaque in her honour. Yet one now adorns the façade of 23 Gloucester Crescent, the London address that she besieged for fifteen years. Alan Bennett – her landlord of sorts – published the original story in the London Review of Books in 1989. Nicholas Hytner (who directs the new fil ... (read more)

Luisa Miller (Opera Australia)

ABR Arts 23 February 2016
Luisa Miller (Opera Australia)
The gestation of some of Giuseppe Verdi's operas was more tumultuous than his often twisted plots. Luisa Miller – which is now being seen in Sydney prior to a shorter season in Melbourne – was as fraught as any of them? Salvatore Cammarano owed the Teatro San Carlo in Naples a libretto, and when he tried to renege the Neapolitans threatened him with incarceration. Verdi somewhat reluctantly ag ... (read more)

King Lear (Sydney Theatre Company)

ABR Arts 30 November 2015
It opens with a deep black-walled stage devoid of props, but for a spotlit microphone. Instead of the feared cast change or sponsorial fealty, on walks Marilyn Monroe at Madison Square Garden, with her sequined dress and curvaceous glamour. We recognise Robyn Nevin, defying the years. Funny as Blossom Dearie, she sings 'Happy Birthday' to 'Nuncle Majesty' before yanking off her wig and yielding th ... (read more)

The Marriage of Figaro and The Elixir of Love (Opera Australia)

ABR Arts 24 November 2015
Opera Australia's short spring season in Melbourne began with the first revival of David McVicars's highly resuscitable production of Le nozze di Figaro , first seen in Sydney in August this year. It follows the British director's Don Giovanni already seen in Sydney and Melbourne. Così fan tutte will follow next year – welcome programming of these three Mozart/Da Ponte masterpieces by the natio ... (read more)