To La Monnaie this evening to see a production of Janecek’s Kat’a Kabanova. The oppressive atmosphere of a family overseen by a domineering materfamilias is well rendered by this production and German soprano Evelyn Herlitzius puts in a fine performance as Kabanova herself, both through her singing and in acting out the anguish and futility of illicit love in a small-minded, hide-bound, decadent community dominated by an odious Kabanicha, played convincingly here by Renée Morloc. I read up a bit on Janacek before the performance. What a fascinating character! In his impoverished student days in Prague he could not afford a piano but made do with a keyboard drawn on his tabletop. He was 62 when Jenufa first brought him acclaim. His life was richly filled with work and love but also tragedy and the madness of infatuation. Prolific until the very end (he died with the third act of his final opera, From the House of the Dead, unfinished on his desk), he surely deserves a popularising biography