Opera Scotland

Barbiere di Siviglia 1952Carl Rosa Opera Company

Read more about the opera Barber of Seville

"A 'Barber' to Remember" was the headline for the review in the Aberdeen Evening Express (5 April).  "No bodies strewed the stage at His Majesty's Theatre last night. The only tears that were shed were laughter inspired, for the greatest comic opera of all, Rossini's Barber of Seville, was being given one of the rollicking performances we have come to expect from the Carl Rosa Company. Here a wealth of individual talent for comedy vied with the sparkle of the music, vocal elasticity with histrionic art.  If a spark was needed to kindle this happy flame it was provided by the overture, admirably directed by Maurits Sillem. It was picked up by Gwent Lewis, a lively Almaviva, elaborated by Redvers Llewellyn, a Figaro with an air, pinpointed by Pauline Allen, a kittenish Rosina and broadened delightfully in character by Hubert Dunkerley, a brilliant study this, as Dr Bartolo, and Stanislav Pieczora, a Don Basilio of excellence.  To all this acting talent the singers brought vocal flexibility, power and tone, in which they vied with one another for honours.  Highlights there were undoubtedly - Llewellyn's Largo al Factotum, his share with Gwent Lewis as they planned entry to Bartolo's house, Pieczora's slander song - but it was the all round high vocal level, the team work, the orchestral command: these were the qualities that made this an outstanding performance which merited the half-dozen curtains demanded by a delighted audience."

The Carl Rosa tour of Scotland in 1952 was notable for its introduction of the new George Lloyd opera John Socman. However this was not brought to Aberdeen.

The full Scottish schedule was as follows:

Aberdeen (His Majesty's) - Week commencing 31 March: Mon Carmen, Tue Rigoletto, Wed Traviata, Thu Faust, Fri Barber of Seville, Sat mat Bohème, Sat eve Trovatore.

Edinburgh (King's) - Week commencing 7 April: Mon Flying Dutchman, Tue Bohème, Wed Barber of Seville, Thu Rigoletto, Fri John Socman, Sat mat Butterfly, Sar eve Faust.

Week commencing Monday 14 April: Mon Cav & Pag, Tue Traviata, Wed Trovatore, Thu Butterfly, Fri Tosca, Sat mat Bohème, Sat eve Carmen.

Glasgow (Theatre Royal) - Week commencing Monday 21 April: Mon Traviata, Tue Bohème, Wed Barber, Thu Dutchman, Fri Rigoletto, Sat mat Butterfly, Sat eve Faust.

W/c Monday 28 April: Mon Barber, Tue Hoffmann, Wed Butterfly, Thu Cav & Pag, Fri Carmen, Sat mat Bohème, Sat eve Trovatore.

Wk/c Monday 5 May: Mon Carmen, Tue Dutchman, Wed Rigoletto, Thu Faust, Fri John Socman, Sat mat Carmen, Sat eve Bohème.

Week commencing Monday 12 May: Mon Butterfly, Tue Tosca, Wed Hoffmann, Thu Trovatore, Fri Traviata, Sat mat Barber, Sat eve Cav & Pag.


Cast details are from a programme in Aberdeen City Library, corroborated by one in the Mitchell for 23 April - the cast identical except for the change of conductor.

Performance Cast

Count Almaviva a young nobleman

Gwent Lewis

Bartolo a doctor, Rosina's guardian

Hubert Dunkerley

Rosina Bartolo's ward

Pauline Allen

Figaro a barber

Redvers Llewellyn

Don Basilio a singing teacher

Stanislav Pieczora

Fiorello servant of the Count

Frederick Wood

Ambrogio Bartolo's servant

Peter Murray

Berta Bartolo's housekeeper

Stella Phillips


Frederick Wood

Production Cast


Arthur Hammond (23 April)

Maurits Sillem

Performance DatesBarbiere di Siviglia 1952

Map List

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

4 Apr, 19.30

King's Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

9 Apr, 19.30

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

23 Apr, 19.15 28 Apr, 19.15

Theatre Royal, Greenock | Greenock

17 May, 14.00

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