Join the MADAME X mailing list

Audience Reviews

Here are some of the reviews / feedback left by MADAME X audience members. If you've been to see MADAME X and would like to leave your own review please use our feedback form.

The star ratings are based on the answer to the question "How would you rate the performance, overall?", with "Excellent" corresponding to 5 stars. Comments have not been edited.

Madame X reviewed by B Stevenson on Aug 30.

Very funny, very dark and very moving. Deserves wide recognition.

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Chris Bennett on Aug 22.

A thoroughly entertaining and thought-provoking evening - stimulating music and wonderful characters - which will encourage me to see contemporary opera in the future.

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by S Lester on Aug 25.

A very entertaining and enjoyable pastiche of 18th century opera with modern overtones. More in the spirit of John Gay than Handel perhaps but well worth seeing and hearing. Performed with skill and gusto. Witty and gruesome, a beautifully judged show.

Rating: 4

Madame X reviewed by E Hancock on Aug 24.

The opera was a great example of chamber opera. By turns funny and thoughtful. I enjoyed it immensely. I particularly liked much of the dialogue which was often witty and bitingly satirical. It was clever in its repetition of themes. for example, I was irritated by the repeated use of platitudes by the agent to start with, but came to find it funnier and funnier and an essential element of the satire. Likewise the questions of the art-buying public. The performances were great and I fell in love with at least two of the singers during the piece (indeed I may have fallen in love with one while she was warming up before the start). Having said that, the sound in the current production was not wonderful, in particular, I thought that the strains of the Church were rather too muffled. In general, although I enjoyed it very much indeed, I felt that the music took a back seat to the drama and that given the passion of the book there was ample scope for more adventurous music and singing, as for example you might find in Powder Her Face by Thomas Ades which I saw recently done by ENO.

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Hilary on Aug 27.

Very interesting piece, it deserves to be more widely seen. Very accessible for "modern" opera. Brilliant performers, great actors in such a small space so close to the audience. I haven't been to the Arcola before, but I shall definitely be back, warm, welcoming "cool" vibe! Intimate performing space and good bar - a great evening out!

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by J Finnerty on Aug 27.

Several days after the performance and I'm still thinking about issues raised and revisiting parts of the opera in my head to enjoy them again, so that's got to be good value. Found the programme really helpful - essential reading - perhaps the ticket price should have been a couple of quid more to make sure everybody got one (I nearly didn't bother). To have the whole libretto in front of the audience might have been too distracting from the action but to project important parts might have helped e.g the titles of paintings as Masetto's speaks. Thank you for an enjoyable and valuable experience.

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Anonymous on Aug 27.

Really good evening. No real criticism of anything in a most entertaining production. Will visit Grimeborn again!

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Anonymous on Aug 28.

Surprised I liked a modern opera. Had a little difficulty Massetto's words sometimes

Rating: 4

Madame X reviewed by R Courtney on Aug 21.

Could not hear all the singers words in first half. But very good overall and would recommend to friends to see other performances.

Rating: 4

Madame X reviewed by P Gould on Aug 23.

Shame there weren't more people there. Maybe the marketing could have been better. More music samples might have persuaded more people to come.

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Anonymous on Aug 21.

Fantastic to experience live opera and music locally!

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Ray McCarthy on Aug 26.

May I just say, that the harshest critic I know, my mum, thoroughly enjoyed the show. High praise indeed.

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by L E on Aug 26.

It was amazing! Thanks for a great night

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Anonymous on Aug 21.

I had some difficulty understanding Masetto at the start of second act and in his reaction to news. At end Masetto could drink poison too?

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Anonymous on Aug 21.

The characters were very well cast.

Rating: 4

Madame X reviewed by Anonymous on Aug 30.

There were some performances that were better than others from the cast; Masseto for example faded as the show progressed, but the agent got even more delightfully despicable as the show went on. The female lead was very impressive, and the second half was poorer for her absence. The ensemble were of a surprisingly high standard throughout. The music was very agreeable. The theatre space was uninspiring on first sight, but was used exceptionally well- credit to the director and cast for getting the most out of the space. The lighting was good in as much as you didn't notice it, generally a good sign, there were no moments where you wished for more. The theatre itself was very friendly and well positioned, with reasonably priced drinks. The drama of the piece was, for me, a tad obvious, although the final few minutes were very well executed. Overall it hasn't changed the way I look at Opera, but I don't regret having gone to see it, and for am Arsenal fan who missed an important game for this, that is high praise indeed. It was an enjoyable show which made you think enough with not so as to distract you from the music.

Rating: 4

Madame X reviewed by Naomi on Aug 26.

An impressive feat! Loved the story. Good luck with rest of the tour.

Rating: 5

Madame X reviewed by Prof. & Mrs. Leslie Brent on Aug 30.

We thought that the opera was wonderful, well suited to the small theatre, beautifully sung and unusually well acted. The small ensemble of musicians played well. Altogether a most enjoyable experience. Tim Ashley of the Guardian ought to be ashamed of himself for his 2* rating!

Rating: 5