Stephen Langridge is represented by Rayfield Allied General Management.

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Stephen Langridge

Stage director

  • a visually enthralling production by Stephen Langridge
    Hugh Canning, Opera
  • a brilliantly conceived achievement...the stagecraft of this production is stunning
    Betty Mohr, South Town Star Chicago
  • the theatrical experience is the thing: it is overwhelming
    Colin Anderson, The Opera Critic
  • Stephen Langridge studied drama at Exeter University.

    Particularly noted for his work in the field of opera, he has directed numerous productions worldwide, including at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Salzburg Festival, Stockholm Royal Opera, Tokyo Opera City, Bregenz Festival, Teatro Nacional de Sao Carlos Lisbon, Den Norske Opera Oslo, Opera di Roma, Grange Park Opera, Greek National Opera, Volksoper Wien and at the operas of Bordeaux, Malmö and Angers-Nantes.

    A strong advocate of contemporary music, he has directed several world premieres, including productions of major new works for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Aldeburgh Festival, Nationale Reisopera, and for Glyndebourne.

    He is also well known for his large-scale theatre work in unusual settings - including Bernstein’s West Side Story and Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in UK Prisons, and Ngoma, a multi-racial music and theatre project in South African townships - and for his work with integrated groups of disabled and non-disabled young people with Share Music Sweden. He regularly leads training, development, and education projects for opera companies and orchestras across Europe.

    Last season he directed a new production of Parsifal for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden. Current engagements include Theodora for Theatre de Champs Elysees in Paris.

    From July 2013 Stephen Langridge is Artistic Director for Opera and Drama at Göteborgsoperan where his first production will be Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro which opens the 14/15 season.

    Please click here to read International Arts Manager‘s article on Stephen Langridge’s plans for Gothenburg Opera.

    • Le Nozze di Figaro
      Gothenburg Opera (September 2014)

      A Figaro could not be more perfect. ... Mr Langridge keeps the action in the same location but moves it forward to the final years of the Franco regime in Spain in the 1970s. This involves no violence to the plot and allows some lovely comic touches, in particular Cherubino’s rock-star act in “Voi che sapete” and Figaro’s sky-blue wedding suit (and disco steps!). The direction and choreography are particularly fine in the ensemble scenes where the interaction between the characters is perfect, as is the elegant choreography of the chorus scenes. Moving the Countess’ “Dove sono” to straight after the Count’s “Vedrò, mentr’io sospiro” was inspired – thanks to the set the Countess sings of her determination to regain Almaviva’s love while the audience sees him presiding over the rigged hearing which will force Figaro to marry Marcellina in the room behind.
      Niklas Smith, Seen and Heard International
      Artistic director of Gothenburg Opera Stephen Langridge moves the abstruse and muddled plot of Lorenzo Da Ponte's libretto from the late eighteenth century into a timeless setting. ... Figaro in Gothenburg: this is how to do opera!
      Waltraut Anna Kautz, bachtrack
    • Parsifal
      Royal Opera House (November 2013)

      The triumph of this new interpretation, directed by Stephen Langridge and designed by Alison Chitty, is that it de-sanctifies Parsifal : all trace of pseudo-sacred mumbo-jumbo is removed. What we get instead is a visual shorthand, contemporary but timeless, that illuminates the opera’s philosophical complexity while keeping the narrative both straightforward and continually mesmerising. Across a five-hour span, that is no mean feat... The bottom line is that Langridge has divined a Parsifal of intellectual fibre and visual eloquence, matched to a musical performance of exceptional sensitivity under Antonio Pappano. His is not a slow Parsifal, but a spacious, urgent reading with oodles of sensuousness in Act Two and disarming tenderness in the Good Friday music.
      Andrew Clark, Financial Times *****
      Stephen Langridge’s new production confronts this troubled and troubling piece unflinchingly... It’s certainly a dramatically consistent world, dominated by the intensive-care cubicle in which Amfortas is contained, and hardly altering even for the deliberately unexotic realm – flower maidens in headscarves – that Willard White’s Klingsor rules in the second. And instead of ignoring or sidestepping the more unsavoury aspects of the libretto, Langridge does attempt to tackle many of them, sometimes in lurid detail, so that the disjunction between them and Wagner’s sublime music is often disturbingly clear.
      Andrew Clements, The Guardian ****
      He (Langridge) justifies it in the two long hours of the first act, establishing the narrative superbly in a clear way that builds steady tension through extended time-spans and adopts a cool, considered line on Wagner’s pseudo-Christian ritualism — one of the divisive issues in the piece.
      Michael White, The New York Times
      Stephen Langridge’s new production of Wagner’s last opera, Parsifal, grapples intelligently with the big issues of this problematic work.
      Barry Millington, Evening Standard ****
      What is Wagner trying to tell us about Christianity, Buddhism, race, blood, sin, redemption? In Langridge's production, laden with signposts and visual rubric, there was plenty of opportunity to ponder these questions.
      Fiona Maddocks, The Observer ****
    • The Minotaur
      Royal Opera House - Revival

      First performed in 2008, Stephen Langridge’s exemplary production of The Minotaur returned, with mostly the same cast and greater clarity and force.
      Fiona Maddocks, The Observer
      Stephen Langridge’s production is stylish, playing out in the wan sunlight and oppressive darkness of Alison Chitty’s set.
      Erica Jeal, The Guardian *****
      Stephen Langridge’s production, designed by Alison Chitty, is as sure-footed as ever.
      Barry Millington, The Evening Standard
      Awesome, forbidding, an opera of unremitting dark power… Birtwistle’s voice is so compelling, and the production so arresting, that the slowly unfolding drama never lets go. Stephen Langridge’s simple but striking production skillfully blends ancient and modern, placing the Minotaur in a circular lair, like the orchestra of a Greek theatre (or a bull-ring) and overseen by a masked Chorus.
      Richard Fairman, Financial Times
      Birtwistle’s visceral piece has lost none of its immediacy since it first appeared at Covent Garden. In fact, although the shock value is as high in Stephen Langridge’s skilful production, the relationships between its major characters seem more intense, and the opera’s psychological message hits harder.
      Neil Fisher, The Times
    • The Damnation of Faust
      Lyric Opera of Chicago

      Hector Berlioz never meant his légend dramatique, La Damnation de Faust, to be staged, but modern directors cannot resist the challenge. Stephen Langridge took up the daunting task with his brilliant new production for Lyric Opera of Chicago at the Civic Opera House. The Lyric’s first staging of any Berlioz work was striking in its edginess, wit and unabashed theatricality. Langridge downplayed the work’s inherent Romantic sentimentality, and the result was a contemporary gloss on the Faust legend of the sort the sardonic devil might have dreamt up for the amusement of guests at a hip soirée in Hades.
      John von Rhein, Opera Magazine
    • The Minotaur
      Royal Opera House - World Premiere

      Entirely in keeping with Birtwistle’s music, Stephen Langridge’s production unfolds the drama unfussily, with clarity and directness.
      Christopher Ballantine, Opera Magazine
      The taut splendour of Stephen Langridge's production, brilliantly conducted by Antonio Pappano and inoffensively designed by Alison Chitty, gives it a succes d'estime.
      Andrew Clark, Financial Times
  • Timeline

    Stephen Langridge
    • Please click here for a timeline of productions by Stephen Langridge.
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