Scottish Opera's 2016/17 mainstage season opens with a revival of Sir Thomas Allen's excellent production of The Marriage of Figaro, first mounted in 2010. The new stagings include Pelléas et Mélisande, which the company has not mounted in forty years. Duke Bluebeard's Castle appears in tandem with a new piece The 8th Door. A new staging of La bohème is followed by the company's first Philip Glass production, his adaptation of Kafka's The Trial. The medium scale work, touring smaller venues in the autumn, is a new treatment of The Elixir of Love. A new departure is the scheme to present Sunday afternoon concert performances of rare works - by Mascagni (L'amico Fritz), Debussy (L'enfant prodigue), Rossini (La scala di seta) and Puccini (Le villi).
Scottish Opera have previously mounted La bohème in three separate full-scale stage productions. The first, from 1967 to 1984, was directed by Peter Ebert in a broadly traditional period style. The second, by Elijah Moshinsky, 1988 to 1999, followed this satisfying model in more intricate and realistic detail. The third, by Stewart Laing, between 2002 and 2010, was a more modern affair, set in an arty New York loft style milieu. This fourth staging promises to split the difference, specifying the Parisian environment between the wars when the American singer Josephine Baker was all the rage.
Stuart Stratford will be conducting most of the sixteen performances, and the production team have previously given us enjoyable interpretations of Manon (2009) and Don Pasquale (2014). Hye-Youn Lee was an excellent Butterfly here recently. and Nadine Livingston is a familiar name. Jonathan Best has worked with the company over many years, but the rest of the cast is relatively unfamiliar, and some completely unknown.
Luis Gomes (Exc May 16; Jun 8, 13)
Christopher Turner (May 16; Jun 8, 13)
Hye-Youn Lee (Exc May 16; Jun 8, 13)
Nadine Livingston (May 16; Jun 8, 13)
Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow
9 May, 19.15 12 May, 19.15 14 May, 16.00 16 May, 19.15 18 May, 19.15 20 May, 19.15
His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen
25 May, 19.15 27 May, 19.15
Festival Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh
31 May, 19.15 4 Jun, 16.00 6 Jun, 19.15 8 Jun, 19.15 10 Jun, 19.15
Eden Court Theatre | Inverness
13 Jun, 19.15 15 Jun, 19.15 17 Jun, 19.15
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