Opera Scotland

Pagliacci 2018Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Pagliacci

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. Leoncavallo's Pagliacci will be seen in Paisley in July - an impressively large-scale production with many local performers, all in a temporarily-erected tent.

Scottish Opera's experience with this excellent dramatic tragedy is surprisingly limited, given the work's near-universal popularity in operatic circles. A medium-scale touring production with young singers was put on in the autumn of 1989, without being seen in the major centres.

Much later, the company's fiftieth anniversary in 2012 was celebrated by a concert performance in Glasgow's City Halls with an excellent international cast. Both these productions saw Leoncavallo's masterpiece played in the usual theatre partnership with Mascagni's Cavalleria rusticana. Now, for once, Pagliacci can be seen alone.

This interesting summertime experiment is supported by Renfrewshire Council and Renfrewshire Leisuure. An excellent professional cast joins Scottish Opera's conductor and orchestra and a chorus made up of a blend of professionals with amateurs from the local community. This approach sounds rather like the hugely successful style of presentation developed in recent years by Graham Vick with Birmingham City Opera.

The performances will take place in a huge tented structure at the Seedhill Sports Ground, instantly dubbed 'Paisley Opera House', which sounds rather like the massive marquee erected in London at Holland Park, where Stuart Stratford has already conducted a thrilling range of verismo pieces, including Pagliacci. A major departure is that it will be essentially a promenade-style performance, with most audience members on their feet for the duration - in amongst the action for an hour and a half.

The cast is led by dramatic tenor Ronald Samm as Canio. He sang Otello with Opera North a few seasons ago and has built an excellent reputation. The Nedda is lyric soprano Anna Patalong, who recently sang beautifully as Pamina in The Magic Flute at the Perth Festival. Dramatic bass-baritone Robert Hayward has appeared with Scottish Opera many times, most recently as Bluebeard. Samuel Dale Johnson and Alasdair Elliott have also become familiar and welcome performers.

Director Bill Bankes-Jones always seems to manage to bring a fresh eye to a well known work, but can also be happy to retain familiar ingredients such as the traditional Italian commedia dell'arte background. He has also provided the new English translatin.

There will be very limited seating available on request for audience members who require it. Please wear appropriate footwear and dress according to the conditions.

Performance Cast

Tonio a player

Robert Hayward

Canio leader of the players

Ronald Samm

Nedda Canio's wife

Anna Patalong

Beppe a player

Alasdair Elliott

Silvio a villager

Samuel Dale Johnson

Performance DatesPagliacci 2018

Map List

Seedhill Sports Ground | Paisley

26 Jul, 19.00 28 Jul, 19.00 29 Jul, 15.00

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