Review: Werther – Scottish Opera

This review appeared first at Opera Britannia

The start of Scottish Opera’s new production of Massenet’s Werther is deceptive. As the curtain goes up we have a pleasant enough scene. A wooden structure is present with what look like rickety stairs. Snow soon starts to fall at the rear of the stage – snow that will continue to fall for much of the production. Pretty soon, a troop of pretty children appear and are being taught to sing a Christmas carol by their father. A finely gift-wrapped box is passed from one character to another and one starts to expect that by the time we meet our hero Jonathan Boyd as Werther, he will be complaining that his tiny hand is frozen and that we will be hearing all about pretty romantic love in a cold garret, whilst pretty urchins churn out one Christmas ditty after another. The whole thing seemed to set us up for a night of Christmas slush derived from the still fast-falling snow.

However, it was not to be. [Read more…]