Small picture of Donizetti

 

 

 

Rossini's  Cinderella (La cenerentola)

Scottish National Opera, October 15 - November 22, 2014

Photographs by Ken Dundas, courtesy of  the Scottish National Opera

 

This was a co production with Opéra national du Rhin. Reviews were mixed.  Kate Molleson's review (The Guardian, October 16, 2014 ) was titled "Decent but unmemorable", while Ken Bruce (Herald, October 16, 2014) spoke of its "cut price look" and looking and sounding "worringly provincial". John Allison (Daily Telegraph, October 23) talked of a "lacklustre production". The one thing they were all very definitely agreed upon was that the Russian mezzo, Victoria Yarovaya, was most definitely a name to watch.

I saw the production in Edinburgh when it had had more time to bed in and the most immediate impression was of a team who were enjoying themselves and who communicated that to the audience. Rebecca Bottone and Máire Flavin got things off in fine style as the (rather good looking) ugly sisters and Yarovaya was suitably down trodden. Graham Danby was a finely acted Don Magnifico but his voice didn't  command quite the same authority - possibly he was still suffering some effects from the indisposition that had led to his replacement by Umberto Chiummo in the early performances. Richard Burkhard was an energetic Dandino and Nico Darmanin threw off his arias with style but Yarovaya was most definitely the high point.  The orchestra sounded a tad rough occasionally and could have done with a little more verve at times but gave sympathetic support under William Lacey. So musically, a very good show. For once one couldn't carp at the director, Sandrine Anglade, who gave us a straightforward reading, although either director or designer allowed themselves to repeat ideas that seem to becoming common currency, e.g. the umbrellas as coach wheels (see below).  For me, it was the actual staging that undermined the performance.  There were six large boxes, ornately decorated and large enough to take a person, which were moved around and rotated in bewildering fashion.  Even so, they failed to inject much interest and, crucially, they gave no strong clues as to when one was in Don Magnifico's house and when in the palace, which, together with the uniformly nondescript dresses (see below), gave no sense of transformation and contrast.  However, overall, a very enjoyable afternoon.

R. Burdekin, Edinburgh, November 16, 2014

 

The Team

 

Angelina (Cinderella) - Victoria Yarovaya

Don Ramiro - Nico Darmanin

Dandini - Richard Burkhard

Don Magnifico - Graeme Danby/ Umberto Chiummo (Umberto Chiummo is in the photographs)

Alidoro - John Molloy

Clorinda - Rebecca Bottone

Tisbe - Máire Flavin

 

 

Conductor  - William Lacey / Oliver Rundell

Director - Sandrine Anglade

Designer -  Claude Chestier

Lighting - Eric Blosse

Choreographer - Pascaline Verrier

 

 

Clorinda, Cinderella and Tisbe

 

 

Clorinda, Cinderella, Dandini, Don Magnifico, Tisbe & Nico Darmanin

 

 

Dandini, Tisbe, Don Magnifico and Clorinda with Cinderella in the background

 

 

Don Ramiro, Tisbe, Don Magnifico, Clorinda, Dandini and Cinderella,

 

 

Dandini,Don  Ramiro, Cinderella, Tisbe, Clorinda

 

 

Don Ramiro with chorus

 

 

Cinderella

 

 

Cinderella and Don Ramiro