review details
 •  July 2005
Rossini · Il barbiere di Siviglia
Santa Fe Opera
  • The company's sparkling if generally straightforward take on "Barber" proves to be a winner in nearly every way. It is an ideal ensemble cast of singers who are virtually all strong actors with a delightful knack for comedy - exactly what one of opera's funniest farces needs.
    Santa Fe's excellent pit orchestra is in top form in each production. Kenneth Montgomery and Music Director Alan Gilbert offer impressive conducting turns in "Barber" and "Turandot" respectively.

    Kyle MacMillan, Denver Post

  • Santa Fe's 'Barber' provides plenty of laughs

    Veteran Santa Fe conductor Kenneth Montgomery keeps the action continually rolling as the orchestra revels in Rossini's colorful accompaniment. If you've never seen "The Barber of Seville" (or any opera, for that matter) don't miss this classic production.

    D.S. Crafts, Albuquerque Journal

  • Figaro's close shave

    A 'barber' better heard than seen. You'll hear fresh young voices making company debuts: Four of five singers are new to principal roles here. You'll hear the closeknit ensemble work the SFO is famous for. You'll enjoy the same youthful energy and high spirits that made the 'Barber' a star that first season in 1957 and remain very much alive 48 years later. Old-timer Kenneth Montgomery is back in the pit, leading a lively orchestra that's playing with greater accuracy, brightness and transparency every year. Vizioli's staging recalls the manic, over-the-top madness of any classic, cold-hearted Marx Brothers movie.

    John Stege, The Santa Fe Reporter

  • Santa Fe Opera stages a

    'Barber' is doubtless Rossini's most popular work, and the Santa Fe Opera's Saturday performance reminded me why. The SFO production not only looked and sounded good, but was a fine ensemble effort; it left me wanting more rather than praying for the end of an act. Conductor Kenneth Montgomery's beat was light and unflustered. He never flailed, and drew precise, unprissy playing from the orchestra - an ideal Rossini advocate, in other words. The cast was the kind SFO likes to be known for: mostly young, rising artists, all committed actors and competent singers, able to give an even and forward-moving performance.

    Craig Smith, The New Mexican

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