Medea, World Premiere at the Royal Opera Stockholm, January 2016:
Adamant, magnificent, terrible Medea. ... Conductor Patrik Ringborg links pit and stage in an extraordinary way. The singing moves from his lips. It might seem easy when Vetter is showing off, but she can’t lean against any accompanying parts. Instead, she is throughout in a dialogue with the orchestra: a thoughtful clarinet, a mourning cor anglais or impetuous tympani. Or the strings, cutting sharply through the stage before Jonas Malmsjö’s messenger delivers his dreadful tale.
A human, magnificent and monstrous Medea. ... The orchestra of the Royal Opera under conductor Patrik Ringborg gives space to the singers and brings out the dynamic from explosive suspense and emotional clusters to chamber music-like intimacy. The tone is born out of the language. Börtz works with a vocal flow going from spoken parts to expressive singing.
The sound is sheer and transparent. Eruptive crescendos signal the way the tragedy is heading. In an exquisite way, the conductor Patrik Ringborg brings out a spell-binding thriller atmosphere out of the united forces of the Royal Opera.
In any case, the music is vibrating. Suggestive, dramatic and contrasty with the melodic elements that nowadays are more common in Börtz’s music, the bloody tragedy often becomes beautiful. Patrik Ringborg conducts the Orchestra of the Royal Opera with great precision.
The orchestra follows the singing at all times, commenting and deepening, and the instrumentation is handcrafted with elegant economy. The first act is long and expository, unfolding against a backdrop of transparent strings. After the interval, the emotional intensity is turned up with fateful chords in brass and drums. The colourful orchestral writing is interpreted with the outmost precision by Patrik Ringborg and the orchestra of the Royal Opera, miraculously well balanced.
The Orchestra of the Royal Opera under conductor Patrik Ringborg gives space to the singers and brings out the dynamic and the depth of the music to an aesthetic unity.
It is rather Patrik Ringborg, who conducts pulse as well as dramaturgy of the opera from his podium. The brass underscores Medea’s madness while the strings speak with the voice of reason – until she comes to the conclusion that the only sensible thing to do is killing the children, then their sound is distorted like a grotesque derisive laughter.
And Patrik Ringborg and the orchestra of the Royal Opera are handling Daniel Börtz's choosy yet most accurate and, may I say, exceedingly clear music with the required precision and care.
In the pit resided Patrik Ringborg, who is used to performing newly written operas. Less than half a year ago he conducted the world premiere of Hans Gefors’s Notorious. Ringborg has spent most of his operatic career at various opera houses in Germany, where he since 2007 is Generalmusikdirektor at Staatstheater Kassel. His precision work with the orchestra contributed greatly to the overall success of the performance.
In spite of regular statements that opera is dying, there pop up ever so often new works that contradict such statements. Daniel Börtz’s Medea is one that hopefully will stay in the repertoire for more than the premiere round. There is though all reason in the world to see it while it is on this Spring.
The orchestra of the Royal Opera under Patrik Ringborg's direction delivered the best performance of the evening, taking us from a gigantic sound cluster with intense expression to almost chamber music-like nuances.
The audience in Stockholm is enthralled by Medea's rampaging in Corinth. ... Patrik Ringborg leads the orchestra of the Royal Opera with precision and empathy.

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