Don Pasquale at the Norwich Theatre Royal is 'a love story like no other'

Don Pasquale opera lead cast

The Glyndeborne tour has made its way to Norwich Theatre Royal - Credit: Robbie Jack

Travel back into the romantic past with a story that feels all too familiar - a forbidden love, but with a humorous twist.

Opera house Glyndebourne's Don Pasquale tells of a love triangle: an elderly bachelor, called Don Pasquale (Ricardo Seguel), his nephew Ernesto (Konu Kim), and Norina (Mariam Battistelli), in their quests for love.

A character called Maletesta (Konstantin Suchkov) pulls the strings.

Don Pasquale and Malatesta on stage at Norwich Theatre Royal

Don Pasquale was at the Norwich Theatre Royal on November 26 - Credit: Robbie Jack

The orchestra breathes life into the story from the first note, and the audience is given a taste of the talent and playfulness of the show to come.

We find Don Pasquale with his health declining and desperate for a wife. So much so that his desperation leaves him vulnerable and a target for Malatesta's intricate plan that places poor Don Pasquale as the victim of love. 

The loveable Ricardo Seguel as Don Pasquale expertly treats us with great displays of naive love, bamboozlement, defiance and finally acceptance.

Audiences are won over by Konu Kim as Ernesto from his first line as he belts out each word with such power, characterised by a familiar sulky teenage angst which perfectly encapsulates the emotional child in all of us. 

Ernesto and Norina happy to be alone together

Don Pasquale is a comic opera centred around mischief and love - Credit: Robbie Jack

Mariam Battistelli as Norina demands attention with her racy soprano - she is the perfect mixture of alluring feminine charm, devilish mischief and fiery temper. 

Most Read

Just as Malatesta commands the plot, Konstantin Suchkov does the same in commanding his audience scene after scene. 

A spectacular scene is created near the end by the Glyndebourne chorus dressed glamorously in white, placed with a beautiful sunset backdrop.

Don Pasquale and the Glyndebourne Chorus together on stage on November 26

Don Pasquale and the Glyndebourne Chorus shared the stage on November 26 - Credit: Robbie Jack

Through enchanting harmonies, the line between audience and choir is bridged as we are let onto their insider gossip on the topic of our love drama. 

The opera reminds audiences that no matter how much we might argue and disagree with others, we are all human, sharing similar hopes and fears. 

All in all, the director Mariame Clément, with the help of the cast, choir, and orchestra, succeeds in leading a production that makes for a great evening out.

The opera is performed in Italian, with English supertitles displayed above the stage.

The show has now moved on, but you can next see opera in Norwich with La Boheme in May 2022.