Sir Thomas Allen’s riotous production of Rossini’s The Barber of Seville, designed by Simon Higlett, opens on 17 October at Theatre Royal Glasgow. First seen in 2007, this delightful comedy tours to Edinburgh, Inverness and Aberdeen.

Our Music Director, Stuart Stratford, conducts Samuel Dale Johnson (Eugene Onegin and Pagliacci 2018) as the titular barber, with Anthony Gregory (Anthropocene 2019) and Simone McIntosh (making her debut with us) as the lovelorn Count Almaviva and Rosina. Also joining the cast are David Stout (Nixon in China 2020) as Doctor Bartolo, John Molloy (A Midsummer Night’s Dream 2022) as Don Basilio and two of our current Emerging Artists, Inna Husieva and Ross Cumming, as Berta and Fiorello.

This revival, with a translation by Amanda Holden (Falstaff 2021), tells the story of barber and fixer, Figaro, who is enlisted by Count Almaviva to woo the beautiful Rosina. However, he first has to deal with Rosina’s guardian Doctor Bartolo who keeps her under lock and key with the intent of marrying her himself.

Director Sir Thomas Allen, who last worked with us on Don Giovanni in 2022, and The Magic Flute in 2019 said: ‘We perform this revival of Rossini’s great masterpiece, The Barber of Seville, in the English language rather than Italian. The comedy is brilliant, of course, and the plan is that we get as much from it as we can. Originally a great play by Beaumarchais, singing it in English allows the cast to relish the great fun of the piece. As with all revivals, we shall see what we took as our scheme from the beginning, but a completely new cast brings a new dimension, a new chemistry to the occasion and I’m looking forward to seeing it more fresh than ever.’

Our General Director, Alex Reedijk said: ‘As we head into autumn, it’s a pleasure to welcome back Sir Thomas Allen, one of the greats of the world opera stage and indeed, our President, to revive this eloquent and beautifully observed production of The Barber of Seville. Rossini’s master comedy has been warmly enjoyed by our audiences over the years. It’s one of those operas, where even if you haven’t seen it before, the character of Figaro feels like a great friend whose company you love, so we are delighted to kick off our 2023/24 Season with this production, with all its musical prowess and theatrical charm.’

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