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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

Movies: Pina 3D

PINA - Dance, dance, otherwise we are lost - International Trailer from neueroadmovies on Vimeo.

Pina 3D is a tribute to the work of choreographer Pina Bausch and tells of the feelings of her dance company to her unexpected death in 2009. At times it feels more like an embalming than a celebration of her work and her life. You're not presented with any background, or much biography (but it is on the internet), it is about the performance of four of Pina's works intercut with other scenes and anecdotes from the dancers, which are occasionally poignant...

You could be forgiven with all the gloating about 3D coming to the art house movies that this film is any better than the standard 3D fare. Alas it is not. Like all 3D films it is under-lit and like watching a focus group through a two-way mirror, even to the point the smears on the heavy 3D eyewear give the impression of fingerprints on the window pane. For most times dancers in the distance looked blurry and washed out and the movement distorted to the point that I felt I was a stroke patient. Watching the poor quality image was infuriating to the point of distraction.

Only on occasions does it look brilliant and makes use of the format, such as when a woman stands on a chair and dives through a mans arms like a fish, or in the scenes with water or on location in Wuppertal (the suspended monorail makes a few guest starring appearances). These are few and far between however. It isn't particularly sexy or sensual either (notwithstanding the partial nudity, the occasional nipple and obviously fit bodies). For something so fluid and thrilling to see live, it seems a bit plain...

All told it is an interesting failure... You're likely to leave the cinema with your head spinning, but that's the shutter effect from the LCD glasses rather than anything artistic or inspired. See it in 2D.

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