Written by Mark Anthony Turnage
Director/co-Librettist Jonathan Moore
Winner BMW Prize
Munich Biennale and Edinburgh Festival 1988
English National Opera 1990

"A resounding, unanimous triumph... Jonathan Moore's work is riveting total theatre."

Sunday Times

"The most exciting new opera London has seen for years... Moore's production is direct, spectacular, inescapable."

The Evening Standard

"Moore's quick-fire production... brilliantly operatic."

The Independent

"Moore's production is a marvel of ingenuity and stagecraft... riveting music theatre."

The Sunday Telegraph

"A moment of tremendous excitement in the history of British opera... modern operatic theatre at its most compelling."

Financial Times

"Shows you what a real contemporary opera can be like... the pacing of the piece is unfailingly sure and taut."

The Observer

"Moore's staging showed extraordinary wealth of invention, with well paced and highly spirited arrangements in which he employed pantomime, and elements of the 'musical' and 'grand opera' to achieve a masterly performance. It bestowed upon the audience the most outstanding music theatre evening of the Biennale: thrilling, sarcastic, witty and powerful."

Suddeutsche Zeitung

"In their 'supershow', Jonathan Moore (direction) and Peter Brennan (choreography), following the music, mix the strident and lyrical and take the audience unawares with a production in which the harsh accusation against the misery of the outcasts remains a central theme."

Munchener Merkur

"The fascination of the production lies in a kind of intensified realism: a precisely administered superimposition becomes apparent as the embodiment of naturalism and psychological analysis which is thrilling and moving."

Neue Zuricher Zeitung

"We found that the libretto of Greek is so closely linked with the music through Moore's contribution to the libretto. Credit was also given to his stage direction."

BMW Music Theatre Jury comments

"We are treated to an exciting and sometimes near demonic production by Jonathan Moore which disturbs and unsettles and sometimes shocks."

Richmond Times

"Turnage and Jonathan Moore have shaken up many of the precepts of 20th century opera and produced a work of great dramatic power... expertly drilled cast."


"Brilliantly directed by Jonathan Moore."

John Drummond, The Listener

"Turnage and the producer here, Jonathan Moore, have condensed Berkoff’s play into a fast moving hardhitting libretto... The pacing of the opera was astonishingly sure… Moore’s production wisely avoided naturalistic portrayal of the killings and violence, stylising it all through mime and movement."

The Guardian

"Jonathan Moore's tight production works with thrilling force... a scaldingly intense piece of musical theatre."

Sunday Times

"Moore's production has such an imaginative breadth."

Financial Times

"The hit of the Biennale is here... it is to be recommended to any opera house director who wishes to attract young audiences and wake up sleepy ones."

Feuilleton Suddeutsche

"Jonathan Moore unleashes entertaining theatre."


"This production is a very worthwhile venture by the English national."

The Daily Mail

"Acclaimed in Munich and Edinburgh in this vividly theatrical production by Jonathan Moore."


"Jonathan Moore conjures striking stage images."

The Stage

"Turnage and Jonathan Moore have shaken up many of the precepts of 20th century opera and produced a work of great dramatic power... expertly drilled cast."

The Opera

"Music direction, design and performances cohere so well and exude so much energy."

Plays International

"This raucous and at times aggressive piece of theatre, one which nevertheless retains a strong sense of humour."

Musical Opinion

"Jonathan Moore's tightly focused hard hitting production."

The Times Editorial Supplement