Turandot


neTTheatre / Grupa Coincidentia
New Town Theatre

This Polish production, the advertising tells us, is inspired by Puccini's last (and unfinished) opera Turandot, his letters and William Burrough's Naked Lunch. It uses voice-over narration, video (not always clear), signing and some what can only be described as puppetry. It can also be best described as physical theatre. The opera's music is played over the PA system except for a drunken and occasionally (deliberately) off-key version of "Nessun dorma", sung by Puccini and a tall, androgynous figure whose significance escapes me, which ends in a punch-up.

I struggled to make sense of what was going on, both during the performance and after, and failed. As we left the theatre, I heard one lady ask her friends "Why?" Why indeed! It neither held the attention nor added anything to our understanding of Puccini or the opera.

Reviewer: Peter Lathan