I have always been a fan of opera, and Le Nozze Di Figaro I have always loved. I loved this production, though my favourites are still the 1973, 1993 and 1994 productions and the Jean Pierre Ponnelle film. Mozart's music is sublime from start to finish with too many highlights to list, though the act 2 ensemble, Dovo Sono and Voi Che Sapete especially I do have soft spots for. The opera also has a great story and characters, and is very funny, though the humour is somewhat broad.
David McVicar has a style that may not appeal to all, I personally find it interesting, though I have known him to have made some questionable decisions such as in 2004's Faust. This 2006 Figaro is one of his better ones, though I do slightly prefer his Rigoletto. The setting is updated to a quite cynical and post-revolutionary France, this said the sets and costumes do look elegant and effective, and the picture and sound quality are of good clarity complete with interesting camera angles. The Act 3 septet was incredibly well done from a comedic and vocal point of view.
Le Nozze Di Figaro's music as I've said makes the opera one of Mozart's best, and the lively orchestral playing and conducting make things full of vitality and warmth. And thankfully the recitatives don't drag too much. Great singing too, with Marcellina, Bartolo and Basilio(Phillip Langridge steals the show almost in act 4 with his aria) having depth to them as well as being very funny, the whole sarcasm in act 1 between Susanna and Marcellina literally pours out. And I have to say the whole cast do look very relaxed on stage, which makes the performance even the more enjoyable.
Erwin Schrott is hearty and charismatic as Figaro, and Miah Persson is every bit his equal in a very charming performance as Susanna. Rinat Shaham may not quite erase memories of Frederica Von Stade or Maria Ewing, but as well as a very kitten-like charm and beautiful voice, she looks quite boyish. Gerald Finley's Count is very brutish particularly in act 2, with his and Dorothea Roschmann's Countess' work among the production's highlights. Roschmann, despite a slightly matronly presence and a couple of shrill notes, sings with great pathos, particularly in Dovo Sono.
All in all, a wonderful Figaro. 9/10 Bethany Cox
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?