Magazine article Opera Canada

UBC Opera Ensemble

Magazine article Opera Canada

UBC Opera Ensemble

Article excerpt

An exuberant Le Nozze di Figaro burst onto the stage of the Chan Centre in Feb., when UBC Opera Ensemble director Nancy Hermiston worked her expected magic on this beloved Mozart work. A vigorous yet sensitive reading of the overture by the UBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Neil Varon, Professor of Conducting and Music Director of the Eastman School of Music, set the right mood.

As Figaro, Peter Monaghan captured the audience's attention from his first words and held onto it for the entire opera. With excellent acting skills, he possesses a resonant baritone, which is completely under his dynamic control. Soprano Tamar Simon was a believable and engaging Susanna, passing from innocence to subtlety to assertion, always in control and always the unrecognized protagonist. Simon has a clear vibrant tone with very sensitive dynamics. As Count Almaviva, baritone Geoffrey Schellenberg was always imperious, forceful and demanding--ever a noble presence. Even in the last scene, on his knees before his Countess, there was still a hint of his ego and his arrogance. …

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