|Count Almaviva||James Corrigan|
|Countess Almaviva||Louise Herrington|
|Don Basilio||Duncan Powell|
Stage director Stan Pretty MBE; Conductor Benjamin Hamilton; Set designer Suzanne Thomson; Costumes Lili Tuttle.
One of the ways we talked about 'Figaro' was 'Downton Abbey meets Whitehall farce'. There are lots of farcical moments – hiding in cupboards, disguises, cross-dressing and jumping out of windows – and the upstairs/downstairs shenanigans are the pivot of the plot. But there are less frothy bits in the story too, like the abuse of power and privilege; stubborn, cunning resistance; and finally forgiveness and reconciliation. No wonder that Director Stan Pretty wrote: 'Mozart's exquisite opera has long been a favourite of mine not only for its glorious music but for its fine characterisations, its comedy, its mood changes, its lyricism and its – in many ways – bizarre but endearing theatricality.'
Our audiences must have agreed with Stan – numbers were well up!
We'd like to say a special thank-you to two people: Christine Buras, who covered for illness by singing part of the Countess's role from the pit; and our former musical director Benjamin Hamilton, who took the conductor's baton at a very late stage.
Photos — the Figaro Gallery
'A stock figure for the common man' — the Figaro back-story