One of the most grown-up review sites around

54,416 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

new MWI
Current reviews

old MWI
pre-2023 reviews

paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Songs to Harp from
the Old and New World

all Nimbus reviews

all tudor reviews

Follow us on Twitter

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All APR reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount




CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS

Joby TALBOT (b.1971)
Alice in Wonderland - ballet (2011)
Alice - Lauren Cuthbertson
Jack/The Knave of Hearts - Sergei Polunin
Lewis Carroll/The White Rabbit - Edward Watson
Mother/The Queen of Hearts - Zenaida Yanowsky
Mad Hatter - Steven Macrae
The Duchess - Simon Russell Beale
Orchestra of the Royal Opera, Covent Garden/Barry Wordsworth
rec. Covent Garden, London, March 2011
Choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon
16:9 aspect; Stereo + dts sound.
OPUS ARTE OA1056D [120:00 + 30:00]

Experience Classicsonline

What a treat this is - such an imaginative treatment of a favourite story. There are extraordinary, eccentric sets and special effects; colourful, larger-than-life, argumentative characters and extraordinary costumes. The use of video projections, supplementing stage-set mechanicals provides the necessary magical transformations including Alice’s journey down into Wonderland, and her sudden changes of size to fit through a series of doorways. Equally awesome are the realisations of Wonderland’s menagerie including the giant Cheshire Cat, its realistic supple movements accomplished by a team of animators using a similar sort of mechanical magic that made War Horse so realistic.
Alice is cast as a slightly older girl than Lewis Carroll would have imagined. She is a young teenage girl poised on the brink of womanhood, her maturing nicely conveyed as she is ‘awakened’ by the romancing of The Knave of Hearts - danced sprightly by Sergei Polunin. The ballet opens as her family gather for tea in the garden of their substantial country house. Lauren Cuthbertson, as Alice, is excellent, her every movement suggesting the actions and emotions of this curious, spirited pre-adolescent.
Christopher Wheeldon’s choreography is very imaginative and fitting for every character. Besides Alice, the eccentric contortions and threatening figures created for the Red Queen - Zenaida Yanowsky constantly twisting in seemingly impossible positions - underline her unfortunate disposition beautifully. There is room also for the buffoonery of The Duchess splendidly played by Simon Russell Beale who is no stranger to such roles ever since his portrayal of Kenneth Widmerpool in the TV adaptation of Anthony Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time. The corps de ballet shine, their playing-cards scene quite ingenious and splendidly danced.
Joby Talbot’s glittering, colourful, percussive music, although not as memorable, for its own sake, as that from some classical ballets (which this is not) is entirely fitting for this story of sublime eccentricities.

The DVD is available in a Blu-ray alternative format and there is a very helpful documentary, ‘Being Alice’, that traces the development of the ballet and covers its choreography, set and costume designs and lighting.
An entrancing new look at the story of Alice in Wonderland which will certainly figure in my 2012 recordings of the year choice.  

Ian Lace

See also review by Raymond J Walker





























































































































Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews


      Composer surveys
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site


Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Pat and present

Helpers invited!

How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips

Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.