Opera Scotland

Elisir d'amore 2009Scottish Opera

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Scottish Opera's 2009/10 season contained four full main-stage productions plus one small-scall-tour. The two works the company had never touched before were the young Rossini's frothy Italian Girl in Algiers and Leoš Janáček'a Adventures of Mr Brouček. The two revivals were an ultra-traditional Elisir d'amore and an ultra-modern Bohème. There was also  a piano-accompanied tour of a second Janáček piece, Kátya Kabanová.

There were some additional elements, however, including a third programme of new short chamber pieces under the 5:15 umbrella. There was also a 'Scenes & Arias' tour by four  young singers and a pianist, the old Essential Scottish Opera format now revised as Opera Highlights. There was a new 'Interactive Opera for 3 to 6 Year Olds', entitled Auntie Janet Saves The Planet. Two well-contrasted co-productions also featured. Music Theatre Wales brought a new chamber piece by Eleanor Alberga, Letters of a Love Betrayed, while the RSAMD joined forces with the orchestra and technical staff of Scottish Opera to mount the Scottish premiere of Prokofiev's wonderful Tolstoy adaptation War and Peace.

When one of the most popular operas in the repertory requires a small cast, and is therefore cheap to mount, it is surprising that it does not appear more often, especially when a company possesses an excellent production in its store. Giles Havergal first directed L'Elisir in 1994, and it had reappeared only once, in 2000. This delightful revival by the original director was the best possible evidence in favour of the careful preservation of the good elements of an existing staging, while still leaving room for improvement by working with the near-ideal cast.

Edgaras Montvidas made a gawky and endearing Nemorino and Francesco Facini a lugubrious Dulcamara. The care which had gone into the revival paid off handsomely when Elena Xanthoudakis was forced to withdraw. Her cover, a young New Zealander, sailed through the performance without a hitch.

Performance Cast

Nemorino a young peasant

Edgaras Montvidas

Adina a wealthy farm owner

Elena Xanthoudakis (Exc Nov 22)

Verity Parker (Nov 22)

Belcore a sergeant

Marcin Bronikowski

Dulcamara a quack doctor

Francesco Facini

Giannetta a peasant girl

Sarah Redgwick

Performance DatesElisir d'amore 2009

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

23 Sep, 19.15 26 Sep, 14.15 24 Oct, 19.15 30 Oct, 19.15

Empire Theatre, Eden Court | Inverness

4 Nov, 19.15 6 Nov, 19.15

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

11 Nov, 19.30 13 Nov, 19.30

Festival Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

22 Nov, 16.00 26 Nov, 19.15 28 Nov, 19.15

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