A modernized and punchy `Falstaff'

Kirov Opera performs the music well, but its staging is over the top

Music Review

February 03, 2007|By Tim Smith | Tim Smith,sun music critic

The Kirov Opera took machine guns, knives, whips and even a chain saw to Verdi's comic masterpiece Falstaff this week. The result proved fascinating and sometimes funny, occasionally pretentious and even vulgar.

Revisionism is so common now in opera that it can be almost a letdown to see a work presented in traditional, literal fashion. But there's still something unsettling about Producers Gone Wild (or Amok). Poor, decon- structed Falstaff never had a chance.

If you go The Kirov Opera's Falstaff will be performed at 7:30 tonight at the Kennedy Center, Virginia and New Hampshire avenues Northwest, Washington. Tickets are $45-$195. Call 800-444-1324.

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