Opera Scotland

Werther 1983Scottish Opera

Read more about the opera Werther

This was the first attempt by Scottish Opera to stage a Massenet work, and the first time any opera by Massenet had been played in Scotland for twenty years. Indeed it may even have been the Scottish première of Massenet's second most enduring opera.  Roderick Brydon found a natural pacing for this awkward piece and the cast was excellent. Cynthia Buchan, in particular, was a very moving Charlotte, particularly in her letter scene. Dennis O'Neill was returning to the company after a gap of several years, and sang beautifully in the title role. The only disappointment came from the unatmospheric designs, given that the basic concept of an update to Victorian times should have worked quite well. Much of the performance took place in the town graveyard, and the sets generally  employed various shades of green - the climactic letter scene appeared to some to be set on a billiard table.

Performance Cast

Le Bailli a magistrate

William McCue

Sophie the magistrate's second daughter

Deborah Rees

Schmidt a neighbour

Jim Croom

Johann a neighbour

Brian Bannatyne-Scott

Werther a young poet

Dennis O'Neill

José Todaro

Charlotte the magistrate's eldest child

Cynthia Buchan


Paul Strathearn


Lesley Boyd

Albert engaged to Charlotte

Alan Watt

Performance DatesWerther 1983

Map List

Theatre Royal, Glasgow | Glasgow

27 Apr, 19.15 30 Apr, 19.15 3 May, 19.15 5 May, 19.15 7 May, 14.15

Theatre Royal, Newcastle | Newcastle-upon-Tyne

19 May, 19.15 21 May, 19.15

Eden Court Theatre | Inverness

26 May, 19.15 28 May, 19.15

Playhouse Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

2 Jun, 19.15 4 Jun, 19.15

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