Roll Over Beethoven - and Hoffman: this week’s classical highlights

Jean-Christophe Spinosi conducts the ICO; Claudia Boyle in ‘The Tales of Hoffman’

Roll Over Beethoven – ICO/Jean-Christophe Spinosi

Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin Thursday September 13th 8pm €25/€22/€10/€5

University Concert Hall, Limerick Friday September 14th 8pm €25/€22/€10/€5

The Irish Chamber Orchestra, fresh from a successful Beethoven programme at Kilkenny Arts Festival under Jörg Widmann last month, is paying more attention to Beethoven for concerts in Dublin and Limerick. The works are the First and Fifth Symphonies, and the conductor is Frenchman Jean-Christophe Spinosi, whose repertoire ranges from the baroque to the contemporary, and who works with groups using period instruments as well as modern ones. Over the last five years or so he has also been working on productions of Rossini operas with Cecilia Bartoli – including this year at the Salzburg Festival – and he opens his ICO programmes with Rossini's Barber of Seville Overture. Cork composer Sam Perkin's new, specially-commissioned Beginnings completes the programme.

The Tales of Hoffmann

O'Reilly Theatre, Belvedere College, Dublin Friday September 14th/Saturday September 15th 7.30pm €38/€35


On tour nationwide until Saturday October 6th

Offenbach's The Tales of Hoffmann, sung in French with English surtitles, is the longest tour to date from Irish National Opera. The Hoffmann is Julian Hubbard, and Claudia Boyle takes on the roles of the women in his life: Olympia, Antonia, Giulietta and Stella. The production's other multiple role-playing singers are John Molloy (Lindorf, Coppélius, Miracle, Dappertutto) and Andrew Gavin (Andrès, Cochenille, Franz and Pitichinaccio). Tom Creed directs, the sets and costumes are by Kate Davenport, and Andrew Synnott conducts the Irish National Opera Chorus and Ensemble. The production tours to Dún Laoghaire, Navan, Limerick, Cork, Tralee, Kilkenny, Galway, Letterkenny and Sligo.

RTÉ NSO/Robert Trevino

NCH, Dublin, Friday September 14th 7.30pm €28.50-€40

The RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra's new season opens with a performance of Mahler's Resurrection Symphony under Robert Trevino. Also on stage will be the RTÉ Philharmonic Choir, whose chorus-master Mark Hindley left unexpectedly some months ago. Hindley's shoes are currently but temporarily being filled by Desmond Earley. And the two Irish soloists are soprano Orla Boylan (due to take the title role in Irish National Opera's Aida later this year) and mezzo-soprano Patricia Bardon (coming back to Dublin fresh from performing in Ravel's L'enfant et les sortilèges at the Lucerne Festival with the London Symphony Orchestra under Simon Rattle). The concert is also being broadcast live on RTÉ lyric fm.