The Moderate Soprano

Duke of Yorks Theatre

The Moderate Soprano

05 Apr 2018 - 30 Jun 2018

£25.00 - N/A

Pro reviewers rating
17 reviews

3.5 out of 5.0
Peer reviewers rating
0 reviews

0.0 out of 5.0

I want to give my country a model of perfection…Nothing less. My country needs cheering up. I’m the man to do it

Nobody can doubt John Christie’s passion or his formidable will: he wooed his opera singer wife with a determination befitting a man who won the Military Cross. Now, in 1934, this Etonian science teacher’s admiration for the works of Wagner leads him to embark on an ambitious project: the construction of an Opera House on his estate in Sussex.

But such is the scale of the enterprise that passion alone may not be enough. It’s only when a famous violinist is accidentally fogged in overnight in Eastbourne that Christie first hears word of a group of refugees for whom life in Germany is becoming impossible. Perhaps they can deliver Christie’s vision of the sublime – assuming of course they’re willing to cast his wife in the lead…

Hamstead Theatre's 2015 hit transfers with its leads. (Reviewsfrom Hampstead)

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“Beautiful account... Elegant production... It's an artfully compiled mosaic, and it glints and ripples with exquisite acting. ”

Michael Coveney (What's on Stage, The Stage, Independent)

“Heart-soaring, joyful and sad and humane... Allam is perfection... Carroll is a perfect foil... Lovely. ”

Libby Purves (TheatreCat, Times)

“Allam... spine-tingling... captures Christie’s extraordinary mix of obduracy, uxoriousness and visionary zeal. ”

Michael Billington (The Guardian)

“Allam delivers a stunning performance – killingly funny and achingly sad... Carroll is pitch-perfect... Fervently recommended. ”

Paul Taylor (The Independent)

“Hare has written a short, defiant, moving play about that hotbed of elitism, Glyndebourne opera house. ”

Quentin Letts (Daily Mail)

“A deeply moving play... Gradually you realise the play is both a tribute to Audrey and an improbable love story.”

Michael Billington (The Guardian)

“Personal devotion and public integrity, are interlaced with surprising shafts of depth as well as elegance.”

David Nice (Arts Desk)

“A leisurely, charming, well-made evening... Brought to life by pitch-perfect acting, especially from Roger Allam.”

Caroline McGinn (Time Out)

“First-rate performances, fuelled by Hare’s velvety, feline dialogue... beguiling production. ”

Susannah Clapp (The Observer)

“Forget the soprano, there’s hardly any music, including opera, to be heard here at all. ”

Ann Treneman (Times)

“Christie’s appealingly over-the-top manner of benign dictatorship [is] delightfully captured by Allam. ”

Fiona Mountford (Evening Standard)

“A deluxe theatrical footnote. But in terms of drama it’s too much strudel, not enough schnitzel. ”

Dominic Cavendish (The Telegraph)

“Frothy, anecdotal... tells us far too much about the problems of planning a repertoire and too little about the personalities.”

Michael Arditti (Express)

“Allam is, as ever, a master of the dry one-liner and there’s lovely work from Carroll as a skilled peacemaker.”

Fiona Mountford (Evening Standard)

“Sweet love story... Brilliantly acted and the cast master Hare's quick-paced text, landing every quip with skill.”

Alistair Wilkinson (Broadway World)

“Static, oddly unmoving play about the founder of Glyndebourne... It never catches fire, it never sings. ”

Natasha Tripney (The Stage, Time Out)

“The theatrical equivalent of a cucumber sandwich eaten on the lawn... Christie, sumptuously played here by Roger Allam.”

Claire Allfree (Metro, Telegraph)

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