Queen of Spades, Royal Opera, ROH, Covent Garden, January 2019

Pushkin’s original story deals with a man obsessed by gambling; in Tchaikovsky’s hands it acquires a love interest as he falls for Liza, while using her as a means for gaining access to the Countess, who once acquired a secret of how to win at faro (a card game). Sadly, Stefan Herheim’s production gums things up by inserting Tchaikovsky into every scene. See my review in The Article.

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