Reviews for Brittens “Billy Budd” in Madrid!

“But after all, Bolton had in general handled the narrative with an intuition worthy of the most sensitive interpreter of Brittens masterpiece. “(, 21.2.2017)


Ivor Bolton gave his best performance so far as chief conductor of the Teatro Real. The musical discourse flowed with clarity and the strings played masterfully with the different densities of the score, although one could have asked for a more passionate approach. The bony violence of Britten’s brass and wind sections was softened by a preference for equilibrium which may also be interpreted as risk aversion.” (, 6.2.2017)


“There was impressive musical rhetoric emanating from the pit as well, Teatro Real music director Ivor Bolton incising precise musical shapes from his excellent players. The flute solos of the Billy death oration eschewed the mystical pull of death, invoking instead nervousness and certainty. And the maestro brought the full, massive orchestral force to a shattering fortissimo that made the presaged death of Billy a truly huge, indeed monumental moment. His was an impressively powerful reading of the Britten score in detached, mannered moments rather than in a flow of emotional atmospheres.” (, 20.2.2017)


The Musical Director of Teatro Real, Ivor Bolton, gave us one of the best performances that I can remember from him, not only in this house but in any other. Ivor Bolton is well-known for his conducting of baroque and classical music, but he has shown that he is totally at home with Britten too. His reading was passionate and exhilarating, and he gets credit for much of the opera’s success. The orchestra was in top form, and the same can be said of the chorus in this very demanding opera.” (, 24.2.2017)