The production zips along thanks to carefully drawn characters, the conductor’s pacing and the vocal commands of the leads

The Barber of Seville National Opera House, Wexford ★★★★★ Gioachino Rossini’s The Barber of Seville (Il barbiere di Siviglia) is a young person’s o(...)

Gavan Ring on The Barber of Seville: “To sing Rossini, I tell ya, you’d be sweating at the end of it”

In the taxi on the way to meet baritone Gavan Ring (28), from Kerry, I find myself telling the driver who I’m off to see. “I don’t believe you,” he s(...)

Conductor Nicholas McGegan: well-heeled Americans follow him around

How much music can you fit into a lifetime? How often can you hear the pieces or performers that thrill or move you the most? How easy is it to expan(...)

NI Opera’s staging of Puccini’s “Turandot”: set in a kind despotic oriental factory, it benefits from striking designs by Rebecca Ringst and Ingo Krügler

God knows what Gerald Barry might come up with if he were ever given a chance to design a fairground ride. There’s a fair chance he might want to desi(...)

Sarah McSharry enjoys the ambiance on Culture Night. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Cities and towns across Ireland came alive as more than 350,000 people gathers to celebrate Culture Night and peek behind closed doors. There were at(...)

Tara Erraught: the Irish mezzo soprano of the moment gives recitals at Wexford Festival Opera, the NCH and in Galway. Photograph: Dieter Nagl/AFP/Getty Images

The new concert season kicks off in earnest on Friday, with one of the most explosive works ever written. Stravinsky’s still awe-inspiring Rite of (...)

Tara Erraught: The law of unintended consequences made her, for a while, ‘the most famous mezzo on Earth’. Photograph: Dieter Nagl/AFP/Getty Images

Mezzo soprano Tara Erraught’s first solo opera gala with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra is easily summed up: she came, she sang, she conquered(...)

‘Left Behind’ is a set of songs marking the Rising through poems by Simon O’Connor (above), which imagine 1916 and its fallout through the experiences of the wives of the rebel leaders. Photograph: Eric Luke

The landmark musical celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Easter Rising was a specially commissioned cantata. Brian Boydell’s A Terrible Beau(...)

Owen Gilhooly (Papageno) and Chloe Morgan (Papagena) in The Magic Flute

Since its inception in 2010, the Lismore Music Festival has performed in the stable yard of Lismore Castle. A three-sided marquee has covered the audi(...)

Today I want to talk about a larger woman. But I want to make you a deal. You’ve to try your best not to feel sorry for me while I talk about being bi(...)