March 15th, 17th and 19th, 2013
Markus Beam is Figaro
Markus Beam is an American baritone who is rapidly establishing himself as a distinguished artist with performances in both the United States and Europe. He is known for his expressive and robust voice, as well as for his theatricality. He brings a noticeable sense of fun to his comic roles.
Recent engagements include: Mozart's Vesparae solennes de confessore at Carnegie Hall; an appearance with Lyric Opera of Kansas City, to sing the Pirate King in Pirates of Penzance; Belcore in L'esir d'amore at the Caramoor International Music Festival; and his Avery FIsher Hall debut as the baritone soloist in Carmina Burana with the National Chorale.
The Barber is Mr. Beam's first appearance with Piedmont Opera, although Figaro is not new to him. Last year, he starred as Figaro with Theater St. Gallen, the oldest performing arts center in Switzerland. See his Opera Lively interview HERE.
Leah Wool is Rosina
Mezzo-soprano Leah Wool has been hailed by Opera News as "among the more distinctive and accomplished artists of her generation," with "a voice of truly beautiful timbre."
Ms. Wool's 2012-2013 season includes appearances with both Nashville Opera and Knoxville Opera as the title role in La Cenerentola; Sacramento Opera, as Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia; and Opera Omaha as Second Lady in The Magic Flute. The 2013-2014 season will feature a return to Boston Baroque.
Last season Ms. Wool returned to Gotham Chamber Opera as the title role in Montsalvatge's El gato con botas and Utah Opera as Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel, Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Opéra Louisiane , and the Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors with The Little Orchestra Society at Avery Fisher Hall. In previous seasons, she sang Hänsel with Kentucky Opera, Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Knoxville Opera. See her Opera Lively interview HERE.
This is Ms. Wool's first appearance with Piedmont Opera.
Victor Ryan Robertson is Count Almaviva
Mr. Robertson's versatile singing ability and stle allow him to cross genres from classical repertoire to pop, contemporary and Broadway.
The tenor first received critical acclaim as Rodolfo in Baz Luhrman's adaptation of Puccini's La Boheme at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles to a record 82 consecutive sold out shows. He's also appeared off-Broadway as one of the tenors in performances of 3 Mo' Tenors in New York City and throughout the world.
Mr. Robertson has brought Count Almaviva to life in perfomances with the Minnesota Opera, Opera Carolina, Michigan Opera Theater, Manitoba Opera, PORT Opera and Arizona Opera. Another signature role in his repertoire is Sportin’ Life in Porgy and Bess, a role that he has performed with the Los Angeles Opera and Dallas Opera, at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, and on tour in London, Edinburgh and Cardiff with the Cape Town Opera. See his Opera Lively interview HERE.
Kevin Glavin is Dr. Bartolo
Basso Buffo Kevin Glavin's career highlights have included Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola with San Francisco Opera; the title role in Don Pasquale, Mustafà in L'Italiana in Algeri, Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Don Inigo Gomez in Ravel's L'Heure Espagnole, and the Sacristan in Tosca with New York City Opera; the title role in Don Pasquale with Glimmerglass Opera, Opera Colorado, the Opera Company of Philadelphia, and L'Opéra de Montréal; Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Seattle Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Washington Opera, the Opera Company of Philadelphia, Florentine Opera, Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Vancouver Opera, the Teatro Colón (Buenos Aires), and the Teatro Teresa Carreño (Caracas); Mustafà in L'Italiana in Algeri with Glimmerglass Opera, Opéra de Québec, and the Opera Company of Philadelphia; Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola with the Opera Company of Philadelphia, Baltimore Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, Opera Columbus, L'Opéra de Montréal, and the Teatro Municipal de Santiago; Dulcamara in L'Elisir D'Amore with Florida Grand Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, and Arizona Opera; Sulpice in La Fille du Regiment with Edmonton Opera; General Boum in Offenbach's La Grande Duchesse and Benoit / Alcindoro in La Boheme with the Opera Company of Philadelphia; Scirocco in L'Étoile with Cincinnati Opera; Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Vancouver Opera, and the Opera Company of Philadelphia; Brighella in Wagner's Das Liebesverbot with Glimmerglass Opera; Leporello in Don Giovanni, Don Alfonso in Cosi Fan Tutte, Bottom in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Benoit / Alcindoro in La Boheme, and Pistola in Falstaff with Pittsburgh Opera; King Louis XVI in The Ghosts of Versailles with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis; the Sacristan in Tosca with Lyric Opera of Kansas City; and Frank in Die Fledermaus with Baltimore Opera. Additional highlights have included Holiday Concerts with the Pittsburgh Symphony, the Seattle Symphony, and the National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Marvin Hamlisch at the Kennedy Center. See his Opera Lively interview HERE.
Rebecca Shorstein is Berta
Brian Banion is Don Basilio See his Opera Lively interview HERE.
Act I, Scene 1 - A plaza in the city of Seville.
In the early hours of the morning Count Almaviva, with the aid of his servant Fiorello and a band of musicians, sings a serenade under a balcony. When his song elicits no response, the musicians noisily depart and the Count considers his next move. He hides when he hears the approach of Figaro who enters declaring that everyone in the city depends on him as barber and general factotum. The Count recognizes Figaro and confides his predicament. The Count has fallen in love with the daughter of a doctor and he has followed her to this house, waiting night and day in the hopes of seeing her. Figaro tells the Count to be of good cheer because he is indispensable to the household and can help. He tells him that Rosina is not the doctor’s daughter, but only his ward, but that the old man plans to marry Rosina for her inheritance. The balcony door opens and Rosina comes out with a letter she would like to give to her suitor (whose identity she doesn’t know). She is interrupted by the entrance of Dr. Bartolo, who wants to know the contents of the letter, which Rosina lets drop to the street. As Dr. Bartolo goes down to get the letter, the Count retrieves it. Dr. Bartolo, thinking that Rosina is up to something, insists that she go inside. Figaro reads the letter to the Count, which encourages his advances. Dr. Bartolo leaves the house planning to hurry his marriage to Rosina. The Count sings to Rosina again, telling her that he is a poor student named Lindoro. When she begins to answer him from inside the house, she is interrupted. The Count and Figaro plot how to further the Count's cause which Figaro is only happy to do, provided that he is well compensated.
Act I, Scene 2 - A room in the house of Dr. Bartolo
Rosina's heart has been touched by Lindoro and she is determined to outwit Dr. Bartolo in order to be with the poor student. Figaro enters but his conversation with Rosina is interrupted by Bartolo and he hides. The doctor tries to find out what she was talking to Figaro about but she won't tell him and leaves. Don Basilio, Rosina's music teacher and Bartolo's confidant enters and informs him that Rosina's secret lover Count Almaviva has arrived in Seville. Basilio suggests that they slander the Count as a way of getting rid of him, but Bartolo thinks it would be better for him to marry Rosina quickly and the two leave to make plans. Figaro has overheard this and tells Rosina who seems unconcerned. She is more interested in learning about her unknown suitor. Figaro tells her that the poor student is his cousin who has fallen hopelessly in love with her. He tries to convince her to write the young man a few words of encouragement; she coyly hesitates, only to produce the letter she has already written. Figaro leaves to deliver it and Dr. Bartolo enters, again trying to interrogate Rosina. When she again proves obstinate, he threatens to keep her locked up in the house. Rosina leaves and there is a loud knock on the door. It is Count Almaviva, disguised as a drunken soldier. He claims that he has been assigned to billet in Bartolo's house. When Bartolo gets the paper exempting him, the Count runs his sword through it, demanding to stay there. Figaro enters and attempts to quiet things down, but the Count becomes increasingly raucous. The police enter and are about to arrest the Count when he quietly signals his true identity to them and they come to attention. This confuses everyone who don't know what to make of this turn of events.
Act II - The music room in the house of Dr. Bartolo
Having found no one in the regiment who knows the drunken soldier, Dr. Bartolo's suspicions have been aroused. A knock on the door reveals Count Almaviva, this time disguised as a music teacher named Don Alonso. He claims to have been sent to give Rosina her lesson because Don Basilio is ill. Suspicious, Bartolo suggests that they visit Basilio but is deterred when the Count gives him the letter he had received from Rosina, telling Bartolo he will use it to tell the girl that he'd gotten it from another of the Count's lovers. Bartolo falls for the story and summons Rosina who immediately recognizes the Count (as Lindoro). Bartolo falls asleep as the Count accompanies her in an aria, during which they plot to elope that evening. Awakening, Bartolo complains that the he can't stand modern music and proceeds to demonstrate an older aria that he prefers. Figaro slips in and proceeds to mock him. The barber has come to give Bartolo his shave, which the doctor refuses. When Figaro complains that he feels mistreated and will have nothing further to do this crazy household, Bartolo relents and gives Figaro his keys to fetch the shaving basin. Figaro uses this opportunity to steal the key to the balcony for the elopement. They are suddenly interrupted by Don Basilio, who has arrived to give Rosina her lesson. Count Almaviva thinks quickly convincing Bartolo that since Basilio doesn't know anything about Rosina's letter, he might ruin the plan and the best thing to do is to get Basilio back home and to bed. They all convince Basilio that he is deathly ill (aided by a purse full of money from the Count) and Basilio leaves. As Figaro begins to shave Bartolo, the Count tries to warn Rosina about the letter he has given Bartolo, but the doctor overhears him, chases the Count and Figaro out.
The maid Berta complains about the goings on in the house. Bartolo returns with Don Basilio, who suspects that Don Alonso was none other than Count Almaviva himself. Bartolo sends Basilio out to make arrangements for an immediate wedding. He calls in Rosina and shows her the letter, telling the girl that he'd received it from a lover of Count Almaviva and that her beloved planned to turn her over to the Count. Stunned, Rosina agrees to marry Bartolo and tells him of the plan for the elopement. He tells her to hide in her room while he goes to fetch the police. After a storm the Count and Figaro use a ladder to climb up to the balcony and steal into the house. Rosina greets them with reproaches. Heartened that Rosina really loves the poor student Lindoro, the Count reveals his true identity and Rosina realizes that she has been duped by Bartolo. The three plan to flee but discover that the ladder has been removed from the balcony. Basilio enters with the notary and with a purse and a gun, the Count convinces Basilio to facilitate the marriage between the Count and Rosina. Bartolo enters with the police, but it is too late. Bartolo finds some consolation in the fact that the Count will let him keep Rosina's dowry. Everyone celebrates the marriage of the Count and Rosina.