Glyndebourne - The Marriage of Figaro

FRANK CLIFF Norwich Theatre Royal

FRANK CLIFF

> Norwich Theatre Royal

Glyndebourne Touring Opera's production of Figaro is sheer delight, musically and visually.

Richard Hudson's elegant design - simple cream and silver sets, black and white costumes - is beautiful to look at.

And Jacopo Spirei's revival of Graham Vick's 2000 production, never static for an instant and endlessly inventive, is a joy, bringing out all the humour and, more importantly, the wit, seamlessly joining together the opera's many plots and

sub-plots.

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Singing and characterisation are, without exception, all in the top flight.

Iain Paterson conveys the rich complexity of Figaro, subversive in Se vuol ballare, while he is cynical and a touch brutal in Non piu anbrai.

Anna Maria Panzarella is a magnificent Susanna and Jeremy Carpenter an authoritative Count Almaviva.

It is a production that also conveys beautifully the more melancholy aspects of the work.

The Countess's two arias when she laments her lost love, Porgi amor and Dove sono, were ravishingly sung by Kate Royal and, after a hysterically funny final scene in the garden, the reconciliation between Count and Countess was most poignantly done.

Thomas Rosner paced the music beautifully and drew excellent playing from the orchestra. Musically and visually an evening of shared joy.