Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Le nozze di Figaro

8 June - 2 August 2013
Festival 2013

5* in the Financial TimesDaily Express, Daily Mail and Music OMH

Watch Figaro online until 31 August

Michael Grandage’s production of Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro returns, with a new cast of singers and conductor Jérémie Rhorer making his UK operatic debut. The opera has particular significance as it was the first opera ever to be performed at Glyndebourne in 1934, with founder John Christie’s wife and co-founder Audrey Mildmay in the role of Susanna.

‘This is a Figaro of rare grace, naturalness and charm’, said The Daily Telegraph, and for The Sunday Times it was a production that ‘affirms Mozart’s most beloved masterpiece as both of its time and perennially modern, Grandage oiling the comic mechanisms of Lorenzo Da Ponte’s libretto with a master technician’s hands.’

Mozart’s music is both exquisitely beautiful and painfully perceptive in the depths of its characterisation. The vulnerability of the Countess is laid bare, as is the predicament of Figaro and Susanna, forced to rely on their wits in a household where they are members of staff, in thrall to a master with no moral compass and low levels of boredom.

During the course of one mad day, tables are turned and expectations dashed; disguises are either penetrated or turn out to be disconcertingly successful; the plots of Bartolo and Marcellina are frustrated, the marriage of Figaro and Susanna is off again, on again, and ultimately, the Count is thwarted and humbled by the Countess’s forgiveness.

Listen to our Le nozze di Figaro podcast

Le nozze di Figaro (recorded live in 2012) will be in cinemas and online from 8 July 2013, venues and booking details are available on the 'In Cinemas' tab.

Reviews

"The evening is a complete delight."
Rated 5* by the Financial Times

"...a fun, feelgood evening with enormous flair — or should that be flares?"
Rated 5* by the Daily Mail

“The singing is excellent, the playing of the London Philharmonic Orchestra is crisp and delightful, but above all, Michael Grandage's production brings out the humour in the opera magnificently.”
Rated 5* by the Daily Express.

"...beautifully sung and acted"
Rated 4* by The Guardian

“…the stage is dominated by vibrant young singers at the start of what promise to be great careers”
Rated 5* by Music OMH

A revival of the 2012 Festival production Co-production with Houston Grand Opera and the Metropolitan Opera
Sung in Italian with English supertitles

Supported by a Syndicate of individuals

Le nozze di Figaro

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Recorded live in 2012

Start times are approximate, please check with your local cinema.

If you are a cinema venue and are interested in screening our productions please contact screenings@glyndebourne.com

Cast and Creative Team from the 2012 Festival production

Conductor Robin Ticciati
Director Michael Grandage
Designer Christopher Oram
Lighting Designer Paule Constable
Movement Director Ben Wright

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

The Glyndebourne Chorus

Cast includes

Figaro Vito Priante
Susanna Lydia Teuscher
Countess Sally Matthews
Count Audun Iversen
Bartolo Andrew Shore
Marcellina Ann Murray
Cherubino Isabel Leonard
Don Basilio Alan Oke
Antonio Nicholas Folwell
Don Curzio Colin Judson
Barbarina Sarah Shafer

Header: 

Le nozze di Figaro (recorded in 2012) will be available to watch online until 31 August.

Main Content: 

Follow us on Twitter for the latests news #Figaro.

Part 1


Part 2

Cast and Creative Team from the 2012 Festival production

Conductor Robin Ticciati
Director Michael Grandage
Designer Christopher Oram
Lighting Designer Paule Constable
Movement Director Ben Wright

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

The Glyndebourne Chorus

Cast includes

Figaro Vito Priante
Susanna Lydia Teuscher
Countess Sally Matthews
Count Audun Iversen
Bartolo Andrew Shore
Marcellina Ann Murray
Cherubino Isabel Leonard
Don Basilio Alan Oke
Antonio Nicholas Folwell
Don Curzio Colin Judson
Barbarina Sarah Shafer

Act I

Susanna tries on a wedding bonnet, whilst her fiancé Figaro measures the room in the castle given them by the Count. She points out its dangerous proximity to the Count, reminding Figaro of the droit de seigneur, the ancient feudal right of masters to dally with their maiden servants. Figaro vows to thwart him. 

Figaro’s old enemy Bartolo and Bartolo’s former servant Marcellina enter with a marriage contract between Marcellina and Figaro, which they intend to enforce. 

The page Cherubino enters, protesting being sent away to the army because the Count found him dallying with the gardener’s daughter Barbarina. When the Count approaches, he hides. 

The Count romances Susanna. Her singing teacher Basilio arrives, forcing the Count to hide. When the Count comes out of hiding, he discovers the hidden Cherubino.  

Figaro arrives with a group of peasants praising the Count for abolishing the droit de seigneur. The Count sends Cherubino off to join his regiment.

Act II 

The Countess laments her husband’s neglect. Susanna tells her of the Count’s designs upon her, and of Figaro’s plan to send a cross-dressed Cherubino to meet the Count instead of her. Cherubino arrives to prepare for his ‘tryst’ with the Count, but the Count’s arrival forces him to hide in the closet. Susanna returns unobserved and hides.

The Count, told that Susanna is hiding in the closet, demands that she emerge. He goes to fetch tools to open the door, taking the Countess with him. Susanna releases Cherubino, who escapes through the window while she enters the closet. Returning with her husband, the Countess confesses that Cherubino is inside. Both are nonplussed when Susanna emerges.

Figaro arrives. The gardener Antonio enters complaining about someone jumping from the window; Figaro claims it was him. The Count is relieved when Bartolo, Marcellina and Basilio enter demanding that Figaro marry Marcellina or repay his debt. 

Interval

Act III

The Count pursues Susanna. She agrees to a rendezvous, but the Count then overhears her plotting with Figaro. 

Alone, the Countess ponders her unhappy marriage. Meanwhile the court case on Marcellina’s marriage contract has been resolved in her favour. Figaro confesses that he was born into a respectable family and requires his parents’ consent. In his description of his history, Marcellina recognises Figaro as her long-lost son; Bartolo is his father. 

Susanna and the Countess write to the Count inviting him to the rendezvous; a pin must be returned as acknowledgement. A group of peasant girls arrive offering flowers to the Countess, with the disguised Cherubino among them. Barbarina forces the Count to agree to let her marry Cherubino. The wedding celebrations begin. Susanna passes the letter to the Count. 

Act IV

That night in the garden, Barbarina laments losing the pin she was to return to Susanna. Figaro resolves to interrupt the tryst between Susanna and the Count.  Marcellina goes to forewarn Susanna. 

Barbarina hides, as do Figaro, Bartolo and Basilio. Disguised in each other’s clothes, Susanna and the Countess enter to ensnare the Count. 

Cherubino arrives seeking Barbarina, but sees (as he thinks) Susanna, and flirts with her. The Count takes Cherubino’s place wooing ‘Susanna’. Figaro, seeing through Susanna’s disguise, feigns seducing ‘the Countess’, and is caught by the Count, who refuses to forgive his wife for her apparent infidelity.  The truth is revealed and all is set right. 

Synopsis by George Hall

Creative team

Conductor Jérémie Rhorer
Director Michael Grandage
Revival Director Ian Rutherford
Designer Christopher Oram
Lighting Designer Paule Constable
Movement Director Ben Wright

Cast

Figaro Adam Plachetka
Susanna Laura Tatulescu
Countess Amanda Majeski
Count Joshua Hopkins
Bartolo Luciano Di Pasquale
Marcellina Anne Mason
Cherubino Lydia Teuscher
Don Basilio Timothy Robinson
Antonio Nicholas Folwell
Don Curzio Alasdair Elliott
Barbarina Sara Lian Owen
First Bridesmaid Charlotte Beament
Second Bridesmaid Annie Fredriksson

London Philharmonic Orchestra
The Glyndebourne Chorus

Audio files: 

Extracts from Le nozze di Figaro Glyndebourne CD 1962 recording. Available from our shop.

Adam Plachetka and Laura Tatulescu in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro, Photo: Robert Workman
Joshua Hopkins and the Glyndebourne Chorus in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Joshua Hopkins in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Timothy Robinson, Laura Tatulescu and Joshua Hopkins in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Laura Tatulescu in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Lydia Teuscher and Sara Lian Owen in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Luciano Di Pasquale and Nicholas Folwell in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Amanda Majeski in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Adam Plachetka and Laura Tatulescu in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
 Joshua Hopkins in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
 Luciano Di Pasquale, Anne Mason, Adam Plachetka and Laura Tatulescu in the 2013 production of Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Timothy Robinson Timothy Robinson in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Adam Plachetka and Laura Tatulescu in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Adam Plachetka and Laura Tatulescu in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Nicholas Folwell and Lydia Teuscher in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Lydia Teuscher in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Laura Tatulescu, Amanda Majeski and Joshua Hopkins in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Amanda Majeski in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Joshua Hopkins in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Laura Tatulescu and Joshua Hopkins in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman
Amanda Majeski in the 2013 production of Le nozze di Figaro. Photo: Robert Workman

Comments

A wonderful evening superb singing and a witty production. We sat in the foyer circle for the first time and thought that the seats were uncomfortable.

A wonderful evening on 13 th July, fabulous weather and a fantastic version of Figaro. We took friends who had not been before so it was wonderful to have such a perfect evening. Thank you. Also I would like to make a comment about the staff in the Mildmay where we had tea. Nothing is too much trouble for them from getting the correct number of seats around a table to providing much needed cold water, all added to the experience.
Vicky Dubois

This was the third time I had seen the current Nozze at Glyndebourne - twice last year with the second being the Touring version. As always the opera was a delight and the production super - an evening of pure joy.

Five of us came to Glyndebourne for the first time in June and we all had the most wonderful experience. The performance was brilliant, the singing superb, the sets marvellous etc etc...
We picnicked in the grounds - this was also superb, the only downside was it could have been warmer! We all had such an enjoyable time that we will definitely repeat the experience.

Had a great visit to see Figaro on Sat 12th July. Lovely weather helped make the day extra special, and all the singing/music was very good. We particularly liked the Countess. Having said that, we also both thought the Touring production of the same opera which we saw here a couple of years ago seemed to have a bit more energy/fun in its overall performance.

My first time at Glyndebourne, an experience far superior to my highest expectations. A delightful unforgettable production of Le Nozze di Figaro.
Thank you Glyndebourne.

The performance on 6 July was outstanding in every regard. A production with huge verve and engagement, the comparatively younger cast performing brilliantly and promising much for the future. The 60s setting with the emphasis on the relaxing sexual relationships male/female; male/male and female/female bringing the story alive and making it credible without resort to complex explanation. All combined to make this one of the most enjoyable and intelligible Figaro's that we have attended.

Once again Glyndebourne, our huge thanks for a unique and memorable evening.

An amazing experience with tremendous performance, beautiful costumes and stunning choreography.

We have been coming to Glyndebourne for 50 years and love Mozart. On Tuesday 2nd July we had the best experience ever. The Marriage of Figaro was wonderful, as the music, sets and costumes were divinely in harmony. The production bowled along, but not too fast to savour the singing, which was perfect. The setting of Moorish Spain was so beautiful, and the costumes just right. The 1960s costumes seemed very natural to the story, and the disguises were believable, for once. Thank you to the entire company, not forgetting the Box Office staff and the backstage people.

Musically this Figaro demonstrated all of the traditional Glyndebourne virtues. An exceptionally well-prepared ensemble. The LPO were on sparkling form - the privilege of hearing this great orchestra in the pit never wanes. The whole event was a delight.

However, the updating is incoherent. The opera is about social revolution (vide Beaumarchais) not the sexual revolution of the 1960s. How can an attempt to reassert the droit de seigneur be explained in the latter era? It just doesn't work.

Luckily this incoherence didn't spoil the event. Mozart was still present, the jokes were good and the performances very fine.

|A brilliant evening - perfect weather (particularly important for one guest who hadn't been to Glyndebourne before) and the best performance of Figaro that I have ever seen.

A glorious feast of music and visually stunning. The singing, especially of the female leads, was marvellous, and the production and design worked well to enhance the music. This was a first visit to Glyndebourne for several of us so it was very special. Although it was cool and rained a little we enjoyed the beautiful gardens and the whole unique atmosphere.

I was visiting from Los Angeles and was thrilled with my first Glyndebourne experience! Loved the production of Figaro, which even though I have seen it many times in many houses, found your production wonderful! Great cast, clever and exciting sets and costumes. Our intermission dinner was terrific and so well organized. The whole evening was the highlight of my trip!

A recent stay in Surrey made an easy journey to Glyndebourne for us as we live in Cheshire. What a wonderful opera in the magical setting. A superb orchestra, and the standard of singing just fantastic. We had hoped to see Figaro again as part of your touring programme later this year in Stoke on Trent, but sadly it is not part of the programme.

A great Figaro! Wonderful singing and playing, and a production that is even better than when we last saw it.

Glyndebourne at its inventive, beautifully-crafted best!

Probably the most perfect all round production I have ever seen at Glyndebourne. Very tasteful

After our miserable experience with Ariadne, it was wonderful to find that Glyndebourne can indeed still produce an evening of pure magic. This production was out of the top drawer in every respect - wonderful staging, singers who sang, acted and looked their parts to perfection, gorgeous orchestra. An object lesson in how to update an opera to a modern era whilst remaining completely true to the composers spirit and intentions. Bravo Glyndebourne! Harold and Olga Wienand.

We echo the many comments of the press and audiances in thinking this one of the best sung and acted performances we have seen at Glyndbourne, and the sceneary was brilliant.
Please bring this back in your future programmes soon.

We couldn't fault it. A brilliant production perfectly realised.

A magical evening at the opera on Saturday. The perfect production of a Mozart favorite, staged exquisitely with great performances from the singers and orchestra, enhanced by the design. The event was complimented by the wonderful picnic weather (the best I can remember for several years) and the company of the friends I came with. The crowning glory was my sister's lemon tart which she blow-torched at the picnic table (we might need a fire extinguisher next year).

Superb production and singing. A very lively and fun-loving Figaro - with a great personality that shines through. Faultless and seamless performance. One of the very best of Glydndebourne Figaros, which are some of the finest productions in the world. An utter triumph. Encore despite the wet rainy day, the misery of which was dispelled and obliterated by the sheer joy, magnificence and wholesome energy of the production.

I saw this production last year. The best Nozze I had ever seen (& Nozze may well be the best opera ever, although admittedly there are other candidates). This year's production was as good, or better. I hope you do it again in a future year.

It was our first visit to Glyndebourne
Excellent singers
Brillant conductor who leads with wit and virtuosity
Picnic on the law Will be an unforgettable expérience for french people
We left Glyndebourne with stars in eyes and ears
Tank you very much

There was a buzz of excitement before the curtain went up, missing two nights earlier with Ariadne, which was accentuated after the curtain went up. A superb performance which was even better than the one last year, if only because the LPO was much better than the OAE - neater, always under the singers and totally beguiling. Jeremie Rhorer did a superb job. The cast was also excellent, too, with the singing of Lydia Teuscher outstanding and Adam Plachetka, Laura Tatulescu and Joshua Hopkins very nearly as good. The acting was splendid, especially Laura Tatulescu. The audience clearly felt the same and the whole atmosphere was full of happy goodwill. Just what one wants from Le Nozze. A very good experience - thank you.

I hadn't been to an opera for nearly fifty years and I loved every note and the modern twists.

Figaro was splendid in every respect. Glyndebourne at its very best. The partial modernisation to bring the action forward into a simpler dress period was sympathetically and tastefully managed ane the impromptu dancing was hilarious. The revolving sets were excellent. The music produced the full, authentic and unique Mozart sound to perfection. In short, the production was everything that Part Two of Ariadne was not. We loved it.

It was my first, though definitely not my last, visit to Glyndebourne. A truly amazing experience all round, and a warm and dry evening on which to enjoy the delights of a picnic on the lawn during the long interval as well. The performance itself was magical, glorious to look at and luscious to listen to. Wonderful singing from the entire company, accompanied by the well-modulated orchestra.

Without doubt the best production! Beg, borrow or steal a ticket..this is brilliant.

The last production I saw at Glyndebourne featured Kiri Te Kanawa and Frederica von Stade. That was a production that fully realised the pathos of the Countess and the shenanigans of the last act. This year's performance was not as strong in conveying these aspects of the opera. The location in time seemed uncertain and therefore unconvincing. There was also a tendency to over-light the Countess and the garden scene detracting from both. Cherubino was excellent as was most of the cast. Good crisp clarity and pace in the pit helped a lot.

A wonderful evening and a great performance .

One of the very best experiences we had.

The Glyndebourne setting and the fantastic weather made the visit perfect.

19th June 2013

on of the best evenings ever at Glyndebourne. Absolutely superb. Direction, orchestration and singing sublime

It was a wonderful performance and the weather was perfect its was one of the best ones we have ever been to. we all enjoyed it.

It was a wonderful performance and the weather was perfect its was one of the best ones we have ever been to. we all enjoyed it.

Despite my first very wet day at Glyndebourne (I have been SOOOO lucky to date), this was a marvellous evening (June 12th). My opera-novice companion was bowled over by it having been a bit lukewarm about Ariadne. I am sure we have another Mozart enthusiast on our hands.
I have seem many productions over the years and this was very much up there, marvellously funny and poignant, well sung throughout.
I think special mention should go to Annie Fredriksson who stood in as Cherubino and I hope has the role stitched up for years to come.

Splendid performance, with excellent acting as well as, of course, the most beautiful music. My favourite opera very well performed.

I loved the bit of stage biz when Susanna drops a sardonic little curtsey to the count on coming out of the wardrobe, and I loved the disco dancing in the wedding scene.

This was without doubt one of the very best productions we have been to in approaching 50 years of visits. It matches the 1981 (?) Midsummer Nights Dream or the William Christie Theodora which both took a lot of beating...plus the weather was perfect for our picnic.

Thank you!

Perfection everywhere....Marriage of Figaro best I have ever seen. Cast, orchestra, sets and wonderful, wonderful singing. Cherubino outstanding. Thank you.

As ever a wonderful evening last Friday . This production was superb, it was funny [the surtitles were excellent ]and entertaining. Another memorable Glyndebourne visit

I prefer the opera to be set in the period intended by Mozart for two reasons. Firstly the dialogue is a comment on the class war going on between the aristocrats and the people, soon to erupt into the French Revolution of 1789. Secondly, the gulf between the Count and his underlings is more forcefully underlined when set in the eighteenth century, as opposed to the rather easy going relationships of modern times. I thought the singing, especially the ensemble singing, was superb and the orchestra brilliantly controlled.
Yours sincerely,
Peter J Holloway

One of the best operas I have seen lately. The orchestra and singers blended wonderfully together. It has to be said that the voices of all the protagonists were memorable.

The whole setting of Glyndebourne helped to make his an unforgettable experience particularly for our overseas guests.

A fabulous production. The orchestra were superb and the cast were engaging. Cherubino was in particularly good voice. This was a wonderful evening.

Acting was superb, scenery was excellent, or orchestra and singers were very good.

Overall, it was a most enjoyful experience. We were delighted to see such a good performance of Le Nozze di Figaro.

We surely come again!

An absolute delight. The sets, costumes and casting were inspired. Susannah on 14th June gave a truly magical performance. The dancing was great and very expressive. A memorable performance.

Fantastic production! Beautiful music , orchestra superb, divine singing blended perfectly and great comedy acting as well. A delight and escape from the working week!

My first Figaro this season and I should like to endorse the view stated earlier that this is a massive improvement on the original run. I was delighted to catch Annie Fredriksson standing in as Cherubino. I have heard her at the Britten Theatre at the RCM and was most impressed then. I loved the way the Countess' final coup de grace was delivered in tempo. Typical of a very well thought through performance. Certainly worth waiting for.

I just want to say that I've been coming to Glyndebourne for about 30 years, but no evening has been happier or more enjoyable than the night I spent at Figaro with a bunch of dear friends on Saturday.

Of course it helped that the weather was so good, and Figaro with you is never going to fail to give pleasure. It's my favourite work of art in the whole world, and I love Glyndebourne more than anywhere. But my expectations were not actually all that high, and I certainly did not expect the ravishing evening it turned out to be.

Not all that high, because I came to Figaro last year too, and perhaps was unlucky in the evening I caught. That night, none of the four principals among the two main couples generated much electricity, and there wasn't much fizz coming out of the pit either. Of course we had an enjoyable evening, but it was the least uplifting of about eight Figaros I'd seen at Glyndebourne and I rather expected a repeat. The more so as none of the three singers whom I remembered as elevating that evening - Isabel Leonard, Ann Murray and Andrew Shore - were on parade this year.

I'd been privileged to hear, in my view, the very finest singers in the world today in La Donna del Lago on Friday and, dare I say it , I thought that Saturday might be a bit of any anti-climax after that. How wrong I was.

First, you had kindly allocated me just about the best value seats in the house, where we were close to the stage and could see every flicker of any eyelid. I'll come back to those seats in a minute.

The performance was almost unrecognisable from the one I attended last year. All the principals had a sparkle that was missing last year, and some people whom I had never seen, and in some cases even heard of, were quite magnificent. Lara Tatulescu at times reminded me of Ileana Cotrubas as Susanna - high praise indeed, as she was incomparably the finest Susanna I've ever seen. Adam Plateschka and Amanda Majeski were scarcely less good and, although I would not portray the Count as Michael Grandage does, Joshua Hopkins was excellent too. Lydia Teuscher was as lively and charming a Cherubino as, on my night, she has been wooden a Susanna last year. And the orchestra played like a dream under a conductor who gave the whole thing a pace, a wit and a sparkle that was singularly missing on the night I went to last year.

Acts I and II served notice that this was a quite different different evening to what I had been expecting, but Acts III and IV were even better. Indeed I think that was the best Act III I've ever seen - in at least 30 performances - including Peter Hall's definitive production in the old theatre. The "sua madre, sua padre" scene in particular was utter perfection and had an insight that I'd never previously seen. Act IV also had pace, sensitivity and meaning - I had tears in my eyes at "Piu docile io sono" and "Ah tutti contenti" that even Joyce's astoundingly wonderful, now world-famous, "Tanti affetti" had not produced the night before. I've been proverbially flying today.

As it happened, I had broadly comparable seats at the ROH on Friday to the ones you so kindly gave me on Saturday - the best value seats in the house, around the side and a level up. From those seats at the ROH one could only see about 75-80% of the stage, not 99% as with you. The chairs were nothing like as comfortable at the ROH, and at times one had to lean a long way forward and turn one's head to see the stage. Not with you! The whole theatre is so well designed and so well laid out that one sees everything in great comfort.

And, as it also happened, I sat next to a most amiable and passionate Indian gentleman at the ROH; and we found ourselves agreeing to agree that Glyndebourne's staff are infinitely more personal, more responsive, more willing to go the extra mile to help, more efficient, and just a joy to deal with, as they are not usually at the ROH, even as a Friend of the place, or for that matter at any large international opera house I've dealt with anywhere in the world.

So thank you, Glyndebourne. You are a shining adornment to the world of opera, and one of the reasons to be most grateful for, and most proud of, being English!

On behalf of Richard Cumming-Bruce

Very good: reminiscent of the last production that we saw of Fig. However,when there is enthusiasm for original instruments (Falstaff) one wonders if the lack of enthusiasm for original dress may not be due to expense. Opera is a spectacle as well as a drama. I was pleased when I attended Colin Davis conducting the Chelsea Opera Group in a concert performance of Don Giovanni at the Town Hall, Oxford (1957?), which brought the qualities of Sir Colin to public attention, as that was what it was supposed to be. I still hope to see the wonderful eighteenth century apparel that really fits the operatic scene for Fig ... incidentally I find the operas of Mozart so much more appealing than those of other composers that I shall choose to attend Mozart whatever the outlandish setting that might be chosen. Our daughter-in-law and son enjoyed the evening almost beyond measure. Thank you all.

This was a splendid production. The set, costumes, orchestra and singing were all outstanding. I have attended Glyndebourne for 45 years and this was one of the most memorable visits. I brought guests from New Zealand and they are taking some very special memories home. Thank you.

Brilliant - wonderfully played and sung and the last act very funny

My first Figaro was at Glyndebourne - and it was magical, an evening of physical and aural delight,something out of this world. As Mozart gives his characters music far beyond their deserts, for the folle journee has tawdry undertones, so Oliver Messel dressed them to match the beauty of the score. That experience has remained happily with me for over half a century and it was a splendid way to start an association with this wonderful opera.

That production was a vision, but there were drawbacks. As there were no subtitles the Italian text was naturally lost on me, and of course almost everyone else, and nobody could keep the intricate plot in one's head from a reading of the programme notes, particularly the last act. Visually, the production was a joy, but it was not very profound. This was an essentially musical evening.

And there other causes for disquiet. The world was changing, rapidly, and Glyndebourne was always under attack from those who thought it effete and elitist. The English Stage Company had opened three years earlier at the Royal Court and its progenitor, George Devine, said, publicly, something like: "At Glyndebourne go to admire the scenery, but after a show at the Royal Court they sit up all night discussing the production." If Glyndebourne was to survive that criticism had to be answered, as it should and indeed could be, for Mozart's operas are psychologically profound.

And after a while, answered that criticism has been, for now you give us productions that do indeed set us thinking and talking.

Your latest production of this opera has merits of a completely different kind from the first one I remember. This is the cleverest and most lucid Figaro I have ever seen. Never, in my experience, has the story been better told or the characters, individually and as a whole, appeared more credible.

I confess I was originally not sure if setting the opera in the early Sixties was a good idea. Some things, such as the droit de seigneur and the Count's private regiment, are rooted in the eighteenth century.

No matter. It achieved the purpose of showing us plainly, as Beaumarchais intended, that the Count is living in a fool's paradise, that inherited wealth can no longer command obedience, that the respect accorded him is largely fictitious. By that token the Almavivas must yield centre stage to Figaro and Susanna, and rightly, for it is his marriage that is at the centre of the opera and if he appears to be taking over from his master that it also quite fair, because if we turn to the third play in Beaumarchais' trilogy we shall find him saving his former employers from swindlers and creditors.

On the other hand, the director made sure that the comic scenes, the disguises, concealments and so forth, were uproariously funny.

Musically the production was excellent from start to finish; I particularly liked Susanna and Cherubino. The superb acoustics of the new auditorium give the performers a great advantage; they can always make themselves easily heard, which makes for better performances.

This was a wonderful evening, for me - and my guests.

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