Friday, June 12, 2020

Ghost of Versailles Metropolitan Opera 1992 Director Colin Graham

I have waited a long time to see the original  1992 Metropolitan Opera, New York production of The Ghost of Versailles and it was worth it. What I did not realise is that the director was Colin Graham who was the director of my first opera "Noyes Fludde" in 1958 at Aldeburgh. We children, well Michael Crawford used to call him "He of the tight trousers"! I was so lucky to hit Colin as a director when I first started as he was punctilious and controlling down to the last eyelash. His 45 minutes of "Noye" was packed with intricacies. It took him 6 weeks to perfect.

Colin is the perfect director for this production which is packed with special moments and he pulled it off magnificently. He was really never truly appreciated in UK opera circles even by Britten who overlooked him on many occasions. I remember congratulating him on a particularly wonderful "Orpheus" at The Royal Opera House. His sad reply was "They haven't asked me to do anything else!" which was really all our loss as he was a truly great opera director as this production is evidence.

Still, this is a worthy finale. He ended up for a while as a monk is a strange cult in the Bible belt USA but left after a year. I am so glad the Met gave him this 20h Century grand opera. He gave them their money's worth.

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