A 10 quid thrill

LadyM1London’s Copy Director Philip Browning reviews Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, currently at ENO.

“Tickling the perverted taste of the bourgeoisie with fidgety, screaming neurotic music”. That was Russian dictator Josef Stalin’s ‘review’ of Shostakovich’s ‘Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk’. Now, that’s my kind of entertainment, Uncle Joe. Give me music brasher than a door being ramrodded in a drug raid, which suddenly soars upward to a lyrical brink.

ENO’s production is updated to a strip-lit factory set in any time now. That’s fine, but if you’re going to use forklift trucks in an opera, make sure they don’t squeak.  That said, a startling evening can be yours for as little as 10 quid.