Opera Scotland

Essential Scottish Opera 2005Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Essential Scottish Opera

Scottish Opera's 2004-05 season consisted of six events, five being full-scale stagings. The proceedings opened with a double-bill of early twentieth century classics, Duke Bluebeard's Castle and Erwartung. The autumn programme also contained a revival of Tosca, the vintage 1980 staging by the late Anthony Besch. The new year began with a rare sighting in Scotland of an opera by Tippett, The Knot Garden. Handel's wonderful setting of Restoration comedy, Semele, followed, and the fifth full-scale production was a revival of Fidelio. The early part of 2005 also featured the usual Highlands and Islands tour of Essential Scottish Opera.

The formula for the 2005 Essential Scottish Opera tour remained as before, with four singers and a pianist under the supervision of a young director, giving an attractively presented programme of operatic excerpts.

Where thie one differed from the pattern was the extent to which these talented artists were forced to adapt to a situation where one of them was unable to perform - an excellent training opportunity which they passed with flying colours.

The scheduled programme put together by Head of Music Derek Clark was as follows:

Part One

Rossini: L'Orgia Serate Musicale.

Flotow: M'appari tutt' amor Martha.

Mozart: I bow to your grace The Marriage of Figaro.

Verdi: Death of Rodrigo Don Carlos.

Gounod: Ah, je veux vivre Roméo et Juliette.

Purcell: When I am laid in earth Dido and Aeneas.

Mozart: Fin ch'an dal vino Don Giovanni.

Handel: Io t'abbraccio Rodelinda.

Bizet: Au fond du temple saint Les Pêcheurs de perles.

Part Two

Dove: Greed.

Puccini: Quando m'en vo La bohème.

Mozart: Voi che sapete Le nozze di Figaro.

Britten: Happy were we (lute song) Gloriana.

Offenbach: Belle nuit, o nuit d'amour Les contes d'Hoffmann.

Donizetti: Only one arm? Rita.

Vaughan Williams: It's really time The Poisoned Kiss.

Lehár A highly respectable wife The Merry Widow.

Bernstein: Best of all possible worlds Candide.

While this programme was generally presented later on, the complete voicelessness on opening night of the tenor Mark Chaundy forced a substantial amount of improvisation in Dundee. The final ensemble from Candide was dropped, along with items from Martha, The Pearl Fishers, Gloriana, Rita and The Merry Widow. Perhaps the most serious loss was the recent Jonathan Dove piece, scheduled to open the second half. Chaundy was still able to walk on and mime in several scenes, so at least the others did not sing in a complete vacuum - especially useful as Don Carlos in Posa's death scene.

After a certain amount of re-ordering in the first half, the three healthy singers and pianist were able to concoct a programme for the later sequences, using some of their own favourite pieces and improvising the linkages. Christopher Dixon provided the Count's aria from Figaro and Yeletsky's from The Queen of Spades. Claire Wild sang 'Adieu à notre petite table' from Manon and 'Ach ich fühl's' from Die Zauberflöte. Sandra Bundy solos were 'Batti, batti' from Don Giovanni and more choice Massenet ('Pleurez mes yeux' from Le Cid). They also finished with Don Giovanni - the duet 'Là ci darem'. This was altogether a highly successful event.

Performance DatesEssential Scottish Opera 2005

Map List

Dundee Rep Theatre | Dundee

18 Jan, 19.30

Gordon Schools, Huntly | Huntly

20 Jan, 19.30

Sunart Centre | Strontian

22 Jan, 19.30

Aros Centre, Portree | Portree, Isle of Skye

25 Jan, 19.30

Village Hall, Lochcarron | Lochcarron, Ross-shire

27 Jan, 19.30

Crear, Tarbert | Tarbert

29 Jan, 19.30

Islay High School, Bowmore | Bowmore, Islay

1 Feb, 19.30

Brunton Theatre | Musselburgh, East Lothian

3 Feb, 19.30

Barrfields Theatre, Vikingar, Largs | Largs, Ayrshire

5 Feb, 19.30

Lochside Theatre | Castle Douglas

8 Feb, 19.30

Howden Park Centre | Livingstone

10 Feb, 19.30

Phipps Hall, Beauly | Beauly

12 Feb, 19.30

Thurso High School | Thurso, Caithness

15 Feb, 19.30

Arts Centre, Birnam | Dunkeld

17 Feb, 19.30

Eastgate Arts Centre, Peebles | Peebles

19 Feb, 19.30

© Copyright Opera Scotland 2023

Site by SiteBuddha