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Ken Russell opera and theatre




Il Mefistofele  

Il Mefistofele

Il Mefistofele

Russell's staging of the Boite opera is also filmed by him and available on video. It is well staged and remains exciting throughout: from the beginning with a workman in the dark holding a torch to the audience, to the ending with the singers disappearing in the smoke.  Russell used all his old tricks on this opera and almost all his themes occur without the whole collapsing.  Adam and Eve are tempted by a snake which is a vacuum cleaner hose- Lair of the White Worm uses the same image.  The cover misspells Goethe as Ghoete.  From 1989.

Boite Mefistofeles

Il Mefistofele

There is a crucifixion scene, as well as Nazis throwing nuns into a pit of fire. In one scene a drunk holds a giant beer bottle as if it is a giant dildo. There is a television playing during the performance.  The fridge, when opened, has shelves with a head on one and hands on another (as in the short film Aria).

Il Mefistofele

The performers are Paata Burchuladze, Ottavio Garaventa and Adriana Morelli. 


More stage work

Click title for opera or play The Rake's Progress *   Madama Butterfly * The Italian Girl in Tangiers * La Boheme *   Die Soldaten * Faust * Mefistofoles * Princess Ida * Salome * Weill and Lenya * Mindgame


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