Opera Scotland

Norma 1993Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Norma

A couple of years earlier, when Scottish Opera put on some gala concerts of arias in halls around the country, Jane Eaglen appeared in tandem with an established star, in Dennis O'Neill, conducted by Robert Dean. At the end of her programme she sang a wonderfully effortless "Casta Diva" complete with cabaletta, which must have made hearers wonder when she would tackle the role in its entirety.

In most respects this staging was a great success. The production was beautifully designed and very satisfying - sliding panels provided interiors for the Roman HQ and for Norma's hut, while the basic set was a beautifully lit woodland glade. Mauceri conducted a powerfully dramatic account of the score, bringing out subtleties that are frequently missed.

Katherine Ciesinski made a perfect Adalgisa, if you accept she should be a mezzo rather than the newly-fashionable light soprano. Stefano Algieri, after a problem on opening night (he mimed while a cover sang from a box) was a virile and unusually subtle Pollione. And Norman Bailey took on a final new role with the company, showing no difficulty with the bass register.

And what of Eaglen? Her performance really was astonishing, making light of all the appalling vocal difficulties, and completely tireless. It seemed that she would be the ideal Norma for the next decade. She quickly sang it for Muti at Ravenna (and a recording was made, though she had a cold). But then her career took her more towards the German, especially Wagnerian, repertoire - Brünnhilde, Isolde, Elektra, Turandot - in the world's great houses, and she doesn't seem to have sung the role again. Nor did she return to Scottish Opera.

Performance Cast

Oroveso Archdruid, father of Norma

Norman Bailey

Pollione Roman Pro-consul in Gaul

Stefano Algieri

Bruce Rankin (Apr 21 voice)

Flavio a centurion

Richard Coxon

Norma High Priestess of the druid temple

Jane Eaglen

Adalgisa a virgin of the temple

Katherine Ciesinski

Clotilde Norma's confidante

Catherine Croall

Performance DatesNorma 1993

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

21 Apr, 19.15 24 Apr, 19.15 27 Apr, 19.15 1 May, 19.15 6 May, 19.15

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

8 Jun, 19.30 12 Jun, 19.30

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

15 Jun, 19.15 19 Jun, 19.15

Theatre Royal, Newcastle | Newcastle-upon-Tyne

22 Jun, 19.15 26 Jun, 19.15

© Copyright Opera Scotland 2024

Site by SiteBuddha