Opera Scotland

Lucia di Lammermoor 2007Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Lucia di Lammermoor

The 2006/07 season of Scottish Opera showed the company gradually recovering from the disastrous financial collapse that had led to the shut-down in 2005. The Edinburgh Festival featured a new work by Stuart MacRae and Simon Armitage called The Assassin Tree. This was a co-production with Covent Garden. The season proper consisted of four full scale productions. The new staging in the autumn was Handel's Tamerlano, with Lucia di Lammermoor in the spring. The two revivals were of successful McVicar stagings - Der Rosenkavalier in the autumn, with Madama Butterfly to follow. A small-scale tour saw a first attempt at producing Viennese operetta in this manner. Die Fledermaus had a nineteen-stop tour with piano accompaniment in the autumn, to be followed in spring by a ten-night revival with small orchestra. The spring also saw the regular tour of operatic scenes and arias - Essential Scottish Opera.

Scottish Opera's second full-scale staging of the most famous opera based on Scottish literature was a generally successful one. Musically it was led with a great sense of drama by Julian Smith, an acknowledged expert in bel canto style. The sets were simple and atmospheric - slate grey slabs to represent castles and rocky outcrops as appropriate, providing opportunities for observing and eavesdropping. The costumes were in a period that was not too precisely defined. The Inverness-born director, known more for work in drama and musicals, showed confidence in his handling of the chorus, a common stumbling block when theatre directors make their early attempts at opera.

The singing cast was generally as good as this difficult piece needs. Andrew Schroeder, the Captain in Klinghoffer, had more to do here, and was perhaps too lacking in nastiness, though that is at least better than the pantomime villain sometimes seen. The Turkish tenor was also very promising. Sally Silver was an excellent stylist as Lucia. Unfortunately, early in the run she sprained an ankle on stage during the first act, completing that performance in a borrowed wheelchair. The next night saw a promising debut by her cover, and when she returned the following week her singing was unimpaired, though her movement did seem slightly restrained.

The production was seen by Valery Gergiev, who quickly arranged to take it over for a series of performances in St Petersburg as a vehicle for Natalie Dessay. A team of staff from Glasgow were able to assist in the transplant, and the staging repeated its success, and was later issued on CD.

Performance Cast

Normanno the Ashtons' forester

Nicholas Ransley

Enrico Lord Henry Ashton

Andrew Schroeder

Raimondo Bide the Bent, the Ashtons' chaplain

Alan Fairs

Lucia Lucy Ashton, Henry's Sister

Sally Silver (Exc May 26)

Christina Dunwoodie (May 26)

Alisa Ailsa, Lucy's companion

Sarah Pring

Edgardo Edgar, the Master of Ravenswood

Bülent Bezdüz

Arturo Lord Arthur Bucklaw

Adriano Graziani

Performance DatesLucia di Lammermoor 2007

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

16 May, 19.15 19 May, 14.30 22 May, 19.15 26 May, 19.15 31 May, 19.15

Regent Theatre | Stoke-on-Trent

8 Jun, 19.15

Festival Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

16 Jun, 19.15 20 Jun, 19.15 22 Jun, 19.15

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

26 Jun, 19.30

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