Opera Scotland

Falstaff 1966Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Falstaff

Scottish Opera’s first Verdi production in 1963 was Otello, rarely performed in Scotland before. The choice of a second one fell on Falstaff. Perhaps this was less of a rarity – after all, Geraint Evans had played the role with the Glyndebourne company at two previous Edinburgh Festivals. However, in avoiding the obviously popular Verdi works the company again showed some flair in choice of repertoire. The other three operas in this spring 1966 season were a revival of the 1964 Faust and new productions of a first Wagner piece (Die Walküre) and a first by Britten (Albert Herring).

Alexander Gibson again led the SNO in a sparkling account of the score. Peter Ebert's production was given an Elizabethan setting, with Peter Rice's set featuring much Tudor red brick.

This cast was beautifully balanced, with the merry wives led by the creamy voiced sopranos Luisa Bosabalian and Elizabeth Robson as mother and daughter. Geraint Evans was by now recognised as one of the great Falstaffs. Elizabeth Bainbridge and John Shaw were based at Covent Garden, where they sang these roles regularly. Francis Egerton and Ian Wallace made an irrepressible comic duo. And Ryland Davies, in a Scottish debut at the start of his long career, was an excellently acted and sweet-toned interpreter of Fenton, as he would remain at the Royal Opera House for the next decade.

 

The season involved tours to Glasgow King’s Theatre, HMT Aberdeen, Perth Theatre and Edinburgh’s King’s Theatre. The productions were Albert Herring (9), Falstaff (7), Die Walkűre (8) and Faust (5).  Twenty-nine performances. Perth 2, Aberdeen 5, Glasgow 11, Edinburgh 11.

Albert Herring evening performances were at 1900, matinees 1400; Falstaff performances at 1930; Valkyrie at 1800; Faust at 1900.

 

The full schedule for the season was:

Perth Theatre: Mon 11 Apr Albert Herring; Wed 13 Albert Herring.

Glasgow, King's Theatre: Fri 6 May Falstaff; Sat 7 Albert Herring; Thu 12 Albert Herring; Fri 13 Valkyrie; Sat 14 Falstaff; Tue 17 Valkyrie; Wed 18 Faust; Thu 19 m Albert Herring; Thu 19 e Falstaff; Fri 20 Valkyrie; Sat 21 Faust.

Edinburgh, King’s Theatre: Tue 24 May Falstaff; Wed 25 Albert Herring; Thu 26 Falstaff; Fri 27 Valkyrie; Sat 28 Faust; Tue 31 Albert Herring; Wed 1 Jun Valkyrie; Thu 2 m Albert Herring; Thu 2 e Falstaff; Fri Faust; Sat 4 Valkyrie.

Aberdeen, His Majesty's Theatre: Tue 7 Jun Valkyrie; Wed 8 Albert Herring; Thu 9 Falstaff; Fri 10 Valkyrie; Sat 11 Faust.


Performance Cast

Sir John Falstaff a knight

Geraint Evans (Exc May 19)

Robert Savoie (May 19)

Pistola Pistol, a follower of Falstaff

Ian Wallace

Bardolfo Bardolph, a follower of Falstaff

Francis Egerton

Caius Dr Caius, a Frenchman

Dennis Brandt

Meg Mistress Page

Laura Sarti

Alice Mistress Alice Ford, wife of Ford

Luisa Bosabalian

Nannetta daughter of the Fords

Elizabeth Robson

Quickly Mistress Quickly, a confidante of Alice and Meg

Elizabeth Bainbridge

Ford a merchant of Windsor

John Shaw

Fenton a young gentleman

Ryland Davies (May 6, 14, 24; Jun 2)

Duncan Robertson (May 19, 26; Jun 9)

Performance DatesFalstaff 1966

Map List

King's Theatre, Glasgow | Glasgow

6 May, 07.30 14 May, 19.30 19 May, 19.30

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

24 May, 19.30 26 May, 19.30 2 Jun, 19.30

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

9 Jun, 19.30

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