Opera isn't everyone's cup of tea. Let alone contemporary opera. Yet I feel compelled to sing (don't worry - metaphorically) the praises and wonders of George Benjamin's remarkable creation, Written on Skin, currently being premiered in London at the Royal Opera House.
When opera is good, it really is very good as it is the one art-form that simultaneously unites so many disciplines. Brilliant musical score by Mr. Benjamin, exceptional text by playwright (and Andy Warhol lookalike) Martin Crimp and beautiful artistic direction by Katie Mitchell. This was a short three act opera with no interval (the entire opera is shorter than Act 1 of Wagner's Parsifal) yet so rich in theme, so dense in metaphor, lyric and drama, that I wanted to see it again, immediately!
OK so I am already an opera fan and partial to contemporary classical music, but the beauty of this was that there was so much in this production, that I would defy even the most resolute opera hater not to find visuals, drama or even melodic moments to enjoy - and as for the open-minded, well it's a feast waiting to be explored. DLK