Opera Scotland

Zauberflöte 2019Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Magic Flute

Scottish Opera's 2018/19 season starts off with the company's first full-scale staging of one of the most popular works of the verismo school in Leoncavallo's Pagliacci. This will be seen in Paisley in July - an impressively large-scale production with many local performers, all in a temporarily-erected tent. The new stagings include a world premiere, Anthropocene, an eagerly awaited further collaboration between Stuart MacRae and Louise Welsh. There is also a new Kátya Kabanová. Returning to the composition period of Pagliacci, the continuing Sunday afternoon concert series includes Scottish premieres for Puccini's second opera, Edgar, and Mascagni's fifth, Silvano. There are also major revivals, and long tours, for Matthew Richardson's staging of Rigoletto from 2011 and Sir Thomas Allen's of The Magic Flute (2012).

This  staging, the third production for Scottish Opera by Sir Thomas Allen, was a great success on its first appearance. As a baritone he sang in the opera frequently throughout his career, for many years as Papageno, more recently as the Speaker. He has a detailed knowledge of the piece from the inside, and, having worked in a wide range of production styles himself, was able to come up with a completely fresh concept.

The setting is mid-Victorian, and is much assisted by Simon Higlett's superb designs. The first impressions are of theatre and music hall. Later the Industrial Revolution becomes a dominant influence in Sarastro's domain - the priests are dressed in overalls with hard hats, and the massive iron structure for the trials by fire and water could have been designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel or Sir Joseph Bazalgette.

Conductor Tobias Ringborg has worked regularly with the company in recent seasons, displaying an equally sure touch with both middle-period Verdi and with Mozart. Of the cast announced so far, the only member returning from last time is Richard Burkhard, an excellent Papageno. Adrian Thompson has appeared here for over thirty-five years, though surprisingly infrequently. He has recently sung Monostatos in David McVicar's Royal Opera production (in which Sir Thomas has been a regular as Speaker). Peter Gijsbertsen made an excellent impression last autumn as Alfredo in La traviata and should be well-suited to Tamino. The rest of the cast is new and largely unknown in these parts, which will be interesting.

Performance Cast

Tamino a Prince

Peter Gijsbertsen (Exc May 14, 18; Jun 13, 15)

William Morgan (May 14, 18; Jun 13, 15)

Papageno a bird-catcher

Richard Burkhard

Queen of Night

Julia Sitkovetsky

Monostatos a servant in the Temple

Adrian Thompson

Pamina daughter of the Queen of Night

Gemma Summerfield

Sarastro High Priest of Isis and Osiris

James Creswell

Papagena disguised as an old woman

Sofia Troncoso

Performance DatesZauberflöte 2019

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

4 May, 19.15 8 May, 19.15

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