Opera Scotland

Traviata 2012Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Traviata

Scottish Opera's production for touring small stages in the autumn of 2012 was La traviata. The director was Annilese Miskimmon - recently appointed Artistic Director of Danish National Opera, and here making her Scottish Opera debut (though she had worked at RSAMD in the past).

This marathon tour, totalling 26 performances with piano accompaniment, lasted from 20 September to 24 November. A few cuts were made to the score, a single interval was inserted between the two scenes of Act 2, and the absence of the dance sequences meant that Flora's party seemed somewhat abbreviated. Nevertheless it still worked effectively in this form. Traviata was, after all, a staple of the old Opera for All tours forty-odd years ago.

A further short run in the spring of 2013 toured from 7 to 23 March, and was performed in the reduced orchestration by Tony Burke, conducted by Derek Clark.

Much was made in the pre-publicity of the plan to update the piece by a century to Paris in the 1950s. There were only a few jarring elements in this - though the costumes hardly seemed the last word in new look chic. Alfredo became a photographer, so the intimate activities of the second scene occurred in his dark room, with photo prints hung up to dry in the full glare. Flora's party began as a photo shoot with all the men snapping away at Violetta modelling the latest lingerie. The final scene opened with doctors in silhouette examining images of Violetta's lungs, one of those pictures hanging in view to the end. Of the wonders of penicillin there was no sign - was she suffering from cancer rather than TB? Not a specially important point.

Perhaps the single most interesting idea was to dress Flora throughout in a dinner suit, George Sand-style. She even had a cigar. This would have been even more interesting in a traditional staging. She seemed to be the only smoker, hardly an accurate aspect of Paris half a century ago. This did make Violetta appear the only woman at the parties - quite effective in emphasising her isolation. The indication that she was pregnant at the time of her death seemed a bit of an afterthought.

The important aspects of the show were all musical. Indeed the entire cast (on 24 Nov) seemed good enough to slip into the next revival of the full-scale McVicar staging. In particular, the Violetta and Germont of Linda Richardson and David Stephenson made the most of their scene together. Jesús Léon also had no difficulties with the part. At this final performance two of the singers were indisposed, and their alternates from the other cast slipped into their (four) roles unobtrusively. 

Read about the first performance of La traviata in Scotland here and about the Kirk's reaction here.

Performance Cast

Violetta Valéry a courtesan

Elin Pritchard (Sep 20 to Oct 6; Oct 23 to Nov 10)

Linda Richardson (Oct 9 to 20; Nov 13 to 24)

Baron Douphol Violetta's protector, a rival of Alfredo

Benjamin Bevan

Doctor Grenvil

Aidan Smith

Flora Bervoix Violetta's friend

Katie Grosset (Sep 20 to Oct 6; Nov 24)

Kathryn McAdam (Oct 9 to Nov 22)

Marquis d' Obigny

Andrew McTaggart

Gaston Vicomte de Letorières, a man about town

Jorge Navarro-Colorado (Sep 20 to Oct 6; Nov 24)

Rónan Busfield (Oct 9 to Nov 22)

Alfredo Germont Gaston's friend

Robyn Lyn Evans (Sep 20 to Oct 6; Oct 23 to Nov 10)

Jesús Léon (Oct 9 to 20; Nov 13 to 24)

Annina Violetta's maid

Katie Grosset (Sep 20 to Oct 6; Nov 24)

Kathryn McAdam (Oct 9 to Nov 22)

Giuseppe Violetta's servant

Jorge Navarro-Colorado (Sep 20 to Oct 6; Nov 24)

Rónan Busfield (Oct 9 to Nov 22)

Giorgio Germont Alfredo's father

David Stephenson

Performance DatesTraviata 2012

Map List

Eastwood Park Theatre | Giffnock, Glasgow

20 Sep, 19.30 22 Sep, 19.30

MacRobert Arts Centre | Stirling

25 Sep, 19.30

Nevis Centre | Fort William

27 Sep, 19.30

Plockton High School | Plockton, Ross-shire

29 Sep, 19.30

Aros Centre, Portree | Portree, Isle of Skye

2 Oct, 19.30

Strathpeffer Pavilion | Strathpeffer

4 Oct, 20.00

Byre Theatre | St Andrews

6 Oct, 19.30

Deeside Theatre | Aboyne, Aberdeenshire

9 Oct, 19.30

Craigmonie Centre | Drumnadrochit, Inverness-shire

11 Oct, 19.30

Haddo House Hall | Ellon, Aberdeenshire

13 Oct, 19.30

Garrison Theatre, Lerwick | Lerwick, Shetland

16 Oct, 19.30

Orkney Arts Centre | Kirkwall, Orkney

18 Oct, 19.30

Thurso High School | Thurso, Caithness

20 Oct, 19.30

Macphail Theatre | Ullapool

23 Oct, 19.30

An Lanntair | Stornoway, Lewis

25 Oct, 19.30

Community Centre, Nairn | Nairn

27 Oct, 19.30

Platform, The Bridge | Easterhouse

6 Nov, 19.30

Volunteer Hall, Galashiels | Galashiels

8 Nov, 19.30

Festival Theatre, Pitlochry | Pitlochry

10 Nov, 19.30

Beacon Arts Centre, Greenock | Greenock

13 Nov, 19.30

Cinema, Newton Stewart | Newton Stewart

15 Nov, 19.30

Buccleuch Centre | Langholm

17 Nov, 19.30

Barrfields Theatre, Vikingar, Largs | Largs, Ayrshire

20 Nov, 19.30

Brunton Theatre | Musselburgh, East Lothian

22 Nov, 19.30

Perth Theatre | Perth

24 Nov, 19.30

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