Review: The Enchanted Pig a musical tale by Jonathan Dove at Buxton Pavilion Arts Centre
This “community opera” is performed by students and alumni of Manchester University. It is full of youthful exuberance and enthusiasm, fast moving, musically varied and very funny.
The story is woven from traditional fairy tales but it is the princess who has all the adventures, traveling to the ends of the earth and sky to free her beloved from his enchantment, she has to wear out three pairs of iron shoes (shiny wellies). Meanwhile our hero spends most of the performance in an enchanted sleep.
The opera is musically and dramatically diverse. There are musical theatre numbers, I loved Mr and Mrs Northwind's’duet, and the song and dance routines. There are lovely operatic melodies and elements of jazz. The glockenspiel and harp music which accompanied Flora’s journey through the sky was magical.
All the performances were of a high standard. We particularly enjoyed Katherine Macaulay’s accomplished soprano as our heroine Flora. Dominic Carver’s bass voice and comic acting was just right as Mr Northwind.
The Enchanted Pig appeals to all ages. I went with my granddaughter and we both thoroughly enjoyed the performance. I think we were watching some of the stars of the future.
By Mavis Kirkham