City News

Review: Faust

Opera Australia’s production of Gounod’s epic drama Faust is simply spellbinding from the opening bars of the overture to its fitting denouement. Goethe’s classic story of Dr Faust was adapted by the French composer in 1859, thirty years after the German poet published his final version of the two act play. On the page as well as on the stage, the devil is intrinsically captivating. When translated into the operatic form, art truly reaches its highest pinnacle.

Teddy Tahu Rhodes stole the show with a masterful performance as Méphistophélès. In Act 2 his rendition of the irreverent aria Le Veau D’Or is riveting. The opening of Act IV, which commences with Rhodes transformation from a massive piece of marble sculpture, was awe inspiring. Michael Fabiano’s performance as Faust was equally stellar while Nicole Car plays the role of Marguerite to perfection. All of the other principals are exemplary and the Opera chorus, whose contribution is special, deserves particular applause.

Opera Australia’s Faust is truly opera at its very finest: interspersed with pieces of wonderfully entertaining cabaret and compelling – indeed spectacularly erotic – ballet. The sets and costumes are exquisite and the orchestra plays to pinpoint perfection. This is truly a night at the Opera not to be missed.

By Don Grieve and Dixie Coulto