If you seem to see double, don’t be alarmed. The “Barber of Seville” which is staged on Thursday with Riccardo Chailly on the podium of the Orchestra and Chorus of the Scala, and directed by Leo Muscato, it seems made on purpose to mess up ideas and drag the viewer into the vortex of Rossini’s magnificent madness, where «And the brain, poor fellow / already stunned, amazed / does not think, gets confused / reduces itself to madness».
To his first test at Piermarini, Muscato, already winner of three Abbiati awards and well aware of having to deal with the memory of the editions of Ponnelle and Arias, decided to reinventing the «Barber» giving life to a work within an opera. Expedient more than justified by the fact that all the characters here have somehow to do with the music. «Fiorello is the one who organizes the serenade to Rosina, she studies singing, Don Bartolo cites historical singers, Figaro plays the guitar, and in Beaumarchais’s play he also figured as an unfortunate composer – the director lists -. So it occurred to me of play Rossini’s game and move the whole action into the theater where it happens. By attributing to each the roles consonant with his character ».
So, here it is Figaro is no longer the “factotum of the city” but of La Scala, hair and make-up attendant, at the troubadour, «to solve every stage situation with a snap of his fingers», reveals the baritone Mattia Oliveri who plays him. As for Rosina (Svetlina Stoyanova), is the star of the company, while Berta (Lavinia Bini) is the choreographer. And if Don Basilio (Nicola Ulivieri) officiates the musical services of the theater, Don Bartolo (Marco Filippo Romano, who sings it for the hundredth time) gets the role of Dominque Meyer, superintendent of the theater. As for Almaviva (Maxime Mironov), he shows up with scores under his arm to direct the serenade to his beauty. “And he does it with an elegant gesture, very similar to mine,” assures Chailly, an amused accomplice in the whole affair.
In short, the Scala and its double for a “Barber” designed for young people, to which the preview on Monday evening was dedicated (sold out immediately). «We have discussed for a long time with Chailly on the historicization or not of the story – Muscato continues -. Leaving it at the time of the libretto seemed an understatement to us for a masterpiece that speaks to us so much in the present. In the end if the costumes of Silvia Aymonino they will have a contemporary connotation, the fabrics and details will have an antique flavor, thanks to the artisanal magic of the Scaligero workshop ».
News on the musical front, is the reintroduction of the sistrum, a ritual rattle dating back to the Egypt of the pharaohs, sacred to Iside, which will make its unpublished timbre heard in three moments of the score, here in the critical edition of Alberto Zedda in 2014.
Absolute novelty instead, the presence of ballet. Nicole Kehrberger’s choreography will intervene in the game of mirrors, against the backdrop of the scenes by Federica Parolini. Finally, to respect the formula of the theater in the theater, Chailly will perform with the curtain closed the overwhelming overture originally composed by Rossini for the «Aureliano in Palmira», later used for «Elisabetta, queen of England» and then for the «Barbiere». A brilliant recycling of which the Pesaro artist was a master, being able to count on the lack of information among the theaters and, of course, on the absolute lack of recordings.
«Il barbiere di Siviglia »by Gioachino Rossini, a new production by the Teatro alla Scala, on stage from Thursday 30 September at 8 pm, live on Rai Radio Tre. Conductor Riccardo Chailly, directed by Leo Muscato, sets by Federica Parolini, costumes by Silvia Aymonino; lights by Alessandro Verazzi, choreography by Nicole Kehrberger In the cast: Mattia Olivieri (Figaro) Svetlina Stoyanova (Rosina), Maxim Mironov / Antonino Siragusa (Count of Almaviva), Marco Filippo Romano (Don Bartolo), Nicola Ulivieri (Don Basilio), Costantino Finucci (Fiorello / Officer), Lavinia Bini (Berta) Tickets from 250 to 15 euros. Infotel 02. 72003744
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