When Jonas Kaufmann made a triumphal return to the opera stage in January after a long lay off with throat troubles, it was as Lohengrin on the massive Bastille stage of the Paris Opera. The huge production – which first debuted at La Scala in 2012 – featured enormous sets and choruses but, perhaps more notably, in yet another marker of how far the staging of opera has moved from the days of the ‘singing sofa’, the world’s greatest...

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