Le nozze di Figaro
The entire action of Mozart’s life-enhancing opera takes place within a single day; a day of madness as the subtitle of the original text describes it. Figaro and Susanna’s determination to marry enrages their master, the Count, reducing him to a state of lustful frustration, disregarding his wife, the Countess, who is left to suff er the miseries of unrequited love. In a breathless circle of plots and counter-plots, the Count pursues Susanna, the young and hormonally volcanic Cherubino pursues anything in a skirt and the scheming pair of Bartolo and Marcellina come close to upsetting Figaro’s plans but are caught in a web of their own devising.
Conceived by the brilliantly scurrilous writer Beaumarchais in 1784 as a barbed satire on the aristocracy, the original play was repeatedly banned from performance in the years leading up to the French Revolution. It was considered to be dangerously incendiary and to Mozart and his librettist Da Ponte it proved irresistible, inspiring them to create an opera of unrivalled beauty and acutely perceptive characterisation.
Transferring direct from the 2012 Festival, this is a new production from celebrated director Michael Grandage, returning to Glyndebourne following his critically acclaimed Billy Budd (2010).
“...a fine show, and well worth catching” says the Guardian.
“…pure delight” says the Daily Express.
A new production from the 2012 Festival
Sung in Italian with English supertitles
Listen to Le nozze di Figaro podcast (20 mins)
A guide to Glyndebourne’s signature opera, Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, with music from the live recording of our 1962 production. Presenter Peggy Reynolds explores the historical context of the opera, the politics behind its humour, and Mozart’s sublime music of rage and forgiveness. (Producer: Mair Bosworth)
Download this podcast (right click and select 'Save file as')
While his fiancée Susanna tries on a wedding bonnet, Figaro measures a room which she is dismayed to discover has been offered them by the Count. She points out its dangerous proximity should he seek her out during her husband’s absence; his offer of a dowry is in exchange for his ancient feudal rights. Figaro swears to frustrate him.
As he leaves, his old enemy Bartolo and Bartolo’s former servant Marcellina enter, the latter with a marriage contract between her and Figaro to which they intend to hold him. Susanna’s entrance gives Marcellina the opportunity for some spiteful muttering. The two square up for a verbal combat.
The page Cherubino turns up, miserable that he is to be sent away because the Count found him dallying with the gardener’s daughter, Barbarina. Seeing the Count approach, he hides behind a chair.
The Count presses his proposal upon Susanna. Her gossipy singing teacher Basilio’s arrival forces him to hide behind the chair while Cherubino moves into it and is hidden beneath Susanna’s dress. Basilio’s mention of Cherubino gazing longingly at the Countess draws the Count out of hiding; demonstrating how he discovered Cherubino in Barbarina’s room, he finds him yet again!
He is interrupted by the arrival of Figaro and a group of peasants praising him for abolishing the . The Count sends Cherubino off to join his regiment.
In the hall laid out for festivities, the Count takes the opportunity to renew his proposal to Susanna. She appears to agree, until the Count overhears her telling Figaro that they have won their case.
Words: George Hall
Conductor Jonathan Cohen
Ilyich Rivas (25 Oct; 3, 8, 17 Nov; 1 Dec)
Director Michael Grandage
Revival Director Ian Rutherford
Designer Christopher Oram
Lighting Designer Paule Constable
Movement Director Ben Wright
Revival Movement Director Kieran Sheehan
Figaro Guido Loconsolo
Derek Welton (25 Oct; 3, 8, 17 Nov; 1 Dec)
Susanna Joélle Harvey (4 - 23, 27 - 30 Oct; 1, 6, 10, 13, 15 Nov)
Anna Devin (25 Oct; 3, 8, 20, 24, 27, 29 Nov; 5, 8 Dec)
Ellie Laugharne (17 Nov; 1 Dec)
Countess Layla Claire
Sarah-Jane Brandon (25 Oct; 3, 8, 17 Nov; 1 Dec)
Count John Moore
Dawid Kimberg (25 Oct; 3, 8, 17 Nov; 1 Dec)
Bartolo Andrew Slater
Marcellina Jean Rigby
Cherubino Kathryn Rudge
Don Basilio Daniel Norman
Antonio Sion Goronwy
Barbarina Ellie Laugharne
Keri Fuge (17 Nov; 1 Dec)
The Glyndebourne Tour Orchestra
The Glyndebourne Chorus