The Knife of Dawn/New Dark Age review – isolation meditations

Royal Opera House, London/livestream
Hannah Kendal’s chamber opera failed to make a dramatic impact, but a piece reworking music by Anna Meredith, Missy Mazzoli and Anna Thorvaldsdottir was chillingly effective

The goodwill that inevitably greeted this double bill – a proper staged event with live music! – couldn’t quite hide the disappointment with the first half. Hannah Kendall’s opera The Knife of Dawn, originally staged at the Roundhouse in 2016, is a rather laboured and didactic piece that succeeds only in informing us about a largely forgotten moment in colonial history.

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