Opera Scotland

Ariadne on Naxos 1998Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Ariadne auf Naxos

The 1997-98 season for Scottish Opera started with the brilliant idea of another look at the original 1912 concept of Ariadne auf Naxos. That version started with the performance of an abbreviated text of Molière's comedy Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme. This was seen at an early Edinburgh Festival in 1950, conducted by Sir Thomas Beecham, but had not been seen in Scotland since. The new production, which played at the 1997 Edinburgh Festival, was a co-production with Nottingham Playhouse. The conventional revision, with prologue, followed as part of the main season.

That season started with a long Opera-Go-Round tour of The Barber of Seville. This was followed by eight main stage productions: Norma, Rigoletto, Peter Grimes, Tosca, Così fan tutte, Ariadne auf Naxos, The Queen of Spades and La traviata. In addition there were concert performances of Handel's Samson and three performances of a double bill of Param Vir's Snatched by the Gods and Broken Strings.

When the Ariadne staging was revived as part of the main season in the Spring of 1998, it was the final revised version complete with Prologue that was presented. The consistency of quality in the cast was remarkable, led by Dame Anne Evans singing the title role, now adding the Prima Donna's comedy for the first time. Diana Montague sang gloriously and looked convincing as the young Composer. John Horton Murray would return as an equally effective Parsifal. Lisa Saffer's reputation lay in singing Handel at one end of the spectrum and Zimmermann's Die Soldaten at the other - but her Zerbinetta sounded effortless. The young Aberdonian baritone David Stephenson led the commedia quartet with distinction. Nigel Douglas performed his last new role with the company in a nicely supercilious performance as the Major-domo.

Performance DatesAriadne on Naxos 1998

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

18 Mar, 19.15 21 Mar, 14.15 24 Mar, 19.15 26 Mar, 19.15 28 Mar, 19.15

Festival Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

14 Apr, 19.15 16 Apr, 19.15 18 Apr, 19.15

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