Bribery, deception and disguise. Enjoy Figaro’s mischievous escapades as he assists Count Almaviva in prising the beautiful Rosina away from her lecherous guardian, Dr Bartolo. Rossini’s comic masterpiece fizzes with memorable melodies in an entertaining production that unites the theatrical worlds of Italian commedia dell’arte and Whitehall farce.

Jonathan Miller’s classic production of The Barber Of Seville is a feast of frivolous fun in this English National Opera production. This is the thirteenth revival of director Jonathan Miller’s production. It is an opera in four acts by Italian composer Gioachino Rossini. Despite a disastrous opening night – the music teacher tripped over and had a prolonged nosebleed and an unexpected cat wandered on stage – it has gone on the be ‘perhaps the greatest of all comic operas’. Indeed, Rossini himself stayed at home for the second night, until he was awoken by the sound of applause and cheering and his opera has delighted audiences ever since.

The Barber of Seville is full of great tunes that are all incredibly familiar, including the fast, jaunty overture and Figaro’s famous aria, ‘Make way for the servant who does everything’. Rossini’s overture is perfectly matched for a high-speed cartoon chase: Looney Tunes release a classic cartoon episode called ‘The Rabbit of Seville’ created in 1950. After the usual chasing around, Bugs Bunny manages to give Elmer Fudd a clean shave to the soundtrack of Rossini’s overture.

Making his role debut as Dr Bartolo is Alan Opie, a long-standing and much-loved ENO artist. Former ENO Harewood Artist Sarah Tynan sings Rosina, while baritone Morgan Pearse and tenor Eleazar Rodriguez reprise their highly acclaimed roles as the barber Figaro and Count Almaviva respectively. British conductor Hilary Griffiths makes his ENO debut.

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