Il Barbiere di Siviglia at the Opera Bastille in Paris

Photo © Lola Guerrera / VOZ’image

Photo © Lola Guerrera / VOZ’image

Logo_OnPOpéra Bastille from 02 February to 04 March 2016
Opening night Tue. 2 Feb.

Il Barbiere di Siviglia

Opera Buffa in two acts (1816)

Gioacchino Rossini
Cesare Sterbini
Giacomo Sagripanti
Damiano Michieletto
Il Conte d’Almaviva
Lawrence Brownlee
Nicola Alaimo
Pretty Yende
Alessio Arduini
Ildar Abdrazakov
Pietro Di Bianco
Anaïs Constans
Un Ufficiale
Laurent Laberdesque
Set design
Paolo Fantin
Costume design
Silvia Aymonino
Lighting design
Fabio Barettin
Chorus master
Alessandro Di Stefano

Paris Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Original production from the Grand Théâtre de Genève

French and English surtitles

© Bernard Coutant/OnP

© Bernard Coutant/OnP


“The Barber is one of the century’s masterpieces”. These words were written by the very Berlioz who in his youth had denounced not only Rossini, but also the “fanaticism he aroused in the fashionable circles of Paris”. Accordingly, the compliment, “repeated until exhaustion” – the composer’s own words – is all the greater. The work was so “brilliant” and “so finely orchestrated” that the “dilettanti of Rome”, enraged by the “slightest unforeseen innovation in melody, harmony, rhythm or instrumentation were ready to kill the young maestro”. Il Barbiere di Siviglia has been performed continually since its turbulent premiere on February 16th 1816.

The composer’s opera buffa transcends the spirit of Beaumarchais’ comedy and combines the absurd with a touch of satirical realism in a score where rhythm and virtuosity place the comic effects in an ongoing dramatic narration. As a result, the characters – Rosina in particular – gain a new degree of realism and break with the usual archetypes.

Damiano Michieletto’s giddying production embraces this perpetual motion and carries in its wake the happy couple formed by Lawrence Brownlee and Pretty Yende.

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