The final performance of the 2011 run of Fiona’s Shaw’s production at the ‘Marriage of Figaro’ on the London Coliseum took place on 10th November and marked the tenth performance.
What an amazing journey from rehearsal to stage – I am so thrilled to have had the opportunity and experience of making my professional opera debut for English National Opera in the role of Cherubino.
On the eve of the opening night of the production I had a wonderful time going along to BBC Radio 3 to an interview with Sean Rafferty where I made my ‘In Tune’ debut singing Cherubino’s arias! It was a lovely opportunity to provide listeners with an insight into the preparations for the production and to share some of the excitement – knowing opening night was just around the corner.
From the first to the last performance it was an incredible experience to be a part of such a large scale production which had been developed by director Fiona Shaw, CBE who was so supportive of us all and in attendance for the performances.
Each night before the performances, the cast and conductor Paul Daniel gathered for a run through of all of the recit in the production – essential to keeping us ‘on our (revolving) toes!’ The transformations into our characters began with costumes and wigs/makeup. (Ensuring Cherubino’s moustache was on straight was always a crucial moment!) – All of this happening amongst the good luck wishes and vocal warm ups until the ‘Beginners calls’ to stage. Once I stepped foot on stage, it was always difficult for me to resist a sneaky peak into the auditorium before the start of the overture to see the audience taking their seats – such a special sight in the beautiful Coliseum.
It was a great pleasure to be a part of such a popular piece as Mozart’s ‘Marriage of Figaro’ and to be stood in Cherubino’s long-johns! It was an honour to work with such a great team at ENO and thank you to everyone who shared, supported and made it all so special!