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Belters and bohemians: Opera Locos @Sadlers_wells

At the start of the Opera Locos performance, the announcement says that they really are singing. You could be forgiven for wondering that, given the amplification turns up the backing track and the voices so loud that you can't always tell what's real. But this is a mostly harmless and slightly eccentric blend of opera classics fused with the occasional pop classic. However, recognising the pop tunes would help if you were over a certain age. The most recent of them dates back twenty years. It's currently playing at the Peacock Theatre .  Five performers play out a variety of archetype opera characters. There's the worn-out tenor (Jesús Álvarez), the macho baritone (Enrique Sánchez-Ramos), the eccentric counter-tenor (Michaël Kone), the dreamy soprano (María Rey-Joly) and the wild mezzo-soprano (Mayca Teba). Since my singing days, I haven't recognised these types of performers. However, once, I recall a conductor saying he wanted no mezzo-sopranos singing with the s

Not in London: Street Theatre Paris

23-04-2008, originally uploaded by Paul-in-London.

Still on holidays this week and soaking up the sights of Paris for a few days... The great thing about French street theatre is that it is so bad you don't mind not giving them any money for it. This one I caught yesterday afternoon basically involved a woman wearing a fox fur (I had to correct my sister who thought it was a beaver) shouting profanities. Every once in a while the man in the white shirt would slap her about a bit. Bearing this in mind I thought I was watching it again tonight when a man started attacking another man with an iron (the kind you use on shirts). It was only when the police started to appear on rollerblades that I started to think that maybe this wasn't so avant garde afterall...

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