Review: Tosca, Norwich Theatre Royal, youngsters steal the show in Puccini classic

English Touring Opera production of
by Puccini
directed by Tim Carroll

English Touring Opera production of TOSCA by Puccini directed by Tim Carroll - Credit: Tim Carroll

Tosca, Puccini's classic tale of love, power and revenge brings to life 19th century Rome and the story of Floria Tosca, the wife to a painter who is called upon to hide an escaped political prisoner from the tyrannical chief of police, Scarpia.

It's one of the most passionate and tragic of all operas. Tosca terrifies.

The year is 1800, the place, Rome. Revolution grips Europe, but republican ideals have been quashed by an oppressive regime as Tosca (Paula Sides) steps into Puccini's politically-charged tale.

She flirts with artist boyfriend Cavaradossi (Samuel Sakker) little realising that he is hiding an escaped republican leader in the Chapel where they stand.

Angelotti (Timothy Connor) is now a political prisoner on the run. The chief of police (Craig Smith) tracks him mercilessly. Tosca becomes a pawn in a game that will end in death.

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Beautifully sung, this production lacks some drive in the storytelling, but the music is perfect.

Children from Arden Grove Infant and Nursery School steal the show with their brilliant work as chorus.

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Eve Stebbing

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