Fiona Shaw continues her close relationship with ENO to direct a brand new production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro
Date published: Tue 11 Oct 2011
Fiona Shaw, one of Britain’s finest theatre, film and television actors, made her stunning opera directing debut in 2008 with Vaughan Williams’ Riders to the Sea. Since then her relationship with ENO has blossomed and her 2010 Olivier nominated production of Hans Werner Henze’s Elegy for Young Lovers was a hit with critics and audiences alike. Shaw now returns to ENO to direct this new production of The Marriage of Figaro.
ENO has assembled an exciting young cast led by three rising star British singers, Iain Patterson as Figaro, Kate Valentine as the Countess and, following his acclaimed Paulo in ENO’s recent Simon Boccanegra, Roland Wood as the Count. Paul Daniel returns to conduct in a revised translation by Jeremy Sams.
ENO is committed to working with directors from across the arts, and has had recent success with operas directed by film makers such as Terry Gilliam, and theatre directors such as Benedict Andrews and Bartlett Sher. Fiona Shaw, as well as having already directed two operas for ENO, has received numerous awards and nominations for her work as an actor. Highlights from her extensive acting career include Mother Courage and Her Children and Happy Days for the National Theatre and The Wasteland for Wilton’s Music Hall. Shaw is currently starring in HBO’s smash-hit True Blood as Marcie and has recently appeared in Terrance Malick’s latest film Tree of Life.
Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, one of the great comic operas, is based on a stage play by French writer Pierre-Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais, set several years after The Barber of Seville. It recounts a day of madness in the palace of the Count Almaviva. Figaro, the Count’s valet, attempts to marry his beloved Susanna, the Countess’s maid, before the Count can seduce her. Fiona Shaw says, The Marriage of Figaro, ‘... is a great work with lots of different artistic powers coming at it... it is a really good opera about equal people. The Count is no better or worse than anybody else...it is about the fact we should all be forgiven for our sins.’ See Shaw talk more about the opera here: www.enofigaro.com
Conductor and former ENO Music Director Paul Daniel returns to the company to lead this predominantly British cast. Iain Paterson, acclaimed for his Amfortas in Nikolaus Lehnhoff’s Parsifal in 2011, sings Figaro. Kate Valentine, who has recently come to the fore in ENO’s Young Singers programme, was widely praised as Elisabeth inElegy for Young Lovers and returns to work with Shaw once again singing the role of the Countess.
The cast is completed with Devon Guthrie, making her company debut as Susanna, Lucy Schaufer, a superb Carolina in Elegy for Young Lovers, singing the role of Marcellina, Roland Wood (Count), Jonathan Best (Bartolo) and Timothy Robinson (Basilio). ENO young singer Kathryn Rudge sings the role of Cherubino and Mary Bevan sings the role of Barbarina.
The Marriage of Figaro opens at the London Coliseum on 05 October for 10 performances – 05, 12, 14, 19, 21, 26 October & 3, 5, 10, November at 7.00pm and 29 October at 6.00pm
Pre-performance talk, Wednesday 12 October 5.15-6pm, £5
London Coliseum tour pre-performance, Saturday 29 October and Saturday 5 November; tours start at 2.30pm, £10 per person
New production supported by a syndicate of individual donors.
Notes to Editors:
ENO is creating the future of opera by:
·Staging contemporary highly theatrical work which is world class
·Working with creative talent from across the arts
·Reaching new audiences
·Developing and supporting British talent
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