Opera Scotland

Barbiere di Siviglia 1942Sadler's Wells Opera

Read more about the opera Barber of Seville

The second visit to Scotland by Sadler's Wells Opera in 1942 only lasted two weeks and came rather later in the spring season than usual. Also, the Edinburgh week took place in the intimate Lyceum, not used for opera for some time now.

The repertoire was substantially different from that of the previous year, and in Glasgow only the Traviata production was returning. The company was larger than before, over 50 artistes and an orchestra of thirty. The services of the Scottish Orchestra were not this time called on - in June, the winter season having ended, they may not have been available anyway.

The Glasgow programme, for the week commencing 15 June was: Mon Rigoletto, Tue Barber of Seville, Wed mat Rigoletto, Wed eve Traviata, Thu Barber, Fri Magic Flute, Sat mat Magic Flute, Sat eve Traviata.

In Edinburgh the following week the Flute was replaced by further performances of Madam Butterfly, while the order was also adjusted: Mon Traviata, Tue Butterfly, Wed mat Barber, Wed eve Rigoletto, Thu Barber, Fri Butterfly, Sat mat Traviata, Sat eve Rigoletto.

Glasgow audiences may have been put off going to the Wells Barber due to the fact that Carl Rosa had staged it there only a few weeks before. Indeed The Magic Flute was the only piece not seen in March. These clashes of scheduling were always an unfortunate possibility with touring companies.

There is one definite novelty here, however. By casting two singers in the part of Rosina, audiences could choose the then accepted rewriting for soprano pitch (Janet Hamilton-Smith) or the more authentic mezzo reading by Edith Coates.

Performance Cast

Fiorello servant of the Count

Charles Miller

Count Almaviva a young nobleman

Morgan Jones

Ben Williams

Figaro a barber

John Hargreaves

Rosina Bartolo's ward

Janet Hamilton-Smith

Edith Coates

Bartolo a doctor, Rosina's guardian

John Greenwood

Edmund Donlevy

Berta Bartolo's housekeeper

Rose Morris

Valetta Iacopi

Ambrogio Bartolo's servant

John MacDonald

Don Basilio a singing teacher

Ronald Stear

Roderick Lloyd


Gilbert Bailey


Haydn Meredith

Performance DatesBarbiere di Siviglia 1942

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

16 Jun, 19.00 18 Jun, 19.00

Royal Lyceum Theatre | Edinburgh

24 Jun, 14.00 25 Jun, 19.00

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