Opera Australia is set to embark on its 27th annual national tour featuring Gioachino Rossini’s timeless masterpiece, The Barber of Seville. The tour will kick off on 14 July at Riverside Theatres in Parramatta and will span over 14,000 kilometres across the country.
Over the course of two months, the tour will include 15 metropolitan and regional theatres across New South Wales, Queensland, Northern Territory, Western Australia, and Victoria. This year’s tour marks the debut of Opera Australia in Goulburn (NSW) and Cleveland (QLD), and a much-anticipated return to Cairns, Katherine, Alice Springs, Kalgoorlie, and Albany.
Under the creative direction of the award-winning Priscilla Jackman, The Barber of Seville receives a contemporary Australian twist. The iconic barber, Figaro, now sports a trendy hipster moustache and operates in a modernised barber shop. Meanwhile, the leading lady, Rosina, takes charge of her destiny to conquer the game of true love. Set against the backdrop of the Victorian town of Seville and the picturesque Yarra Valley wine region, this reimagined adaptation injects fresh energy and vitality into one of the world’s most cherished operas.
Opera Australia has assembled a cast of exceptional singers and musicians, showcasing the company’s finest talent. Sopranos Esther Song and Cathy-Di Zhang will captivate audiences with their portrayal of Rosina, while tenor Shanul Sharma, who recently mesmerised crowds with his stellar performance as Gandhi in Philip Glass’ Satyagraha at Melbourne’s Hamer Hall, shares the role of Count Almaviva with John Longmuir. Baritones Christian Haotian Qi and Andrew Williams will both bring the famous barber, Figaro, to life, sharing the role between them.
Opera Australia’s CEO, Fiona Allan, emphasizes the significance of taking opera beyond major cities and into regional areas, reaffirming its integral position in the company’s annual program.
Opera Australia engages in a variety of workshops and programs with local communities at each place the tour visits, which is an important step in introducing new audiences to the world of opera.
The Regional Children’s Chorus program, under the direction of Children’s Chorus Master Jonathon Bam sees local students join the professional cast in rehearsal and in performance, for what is for many, their first taste of live performance in front of an audience.
Opera Australia began its National Tour in 1996 and over the years it has presented many of the country’s finest singers and musicians to more than 317,500 people in 119 locations across metropolitan and regional Australia.
Performance Locations and Times
Parramatta, NSW | 14 & 15 July | Riverside Theatre
Goulburn, NSW | 19 July | Goulburn Performing Arts Centre
Cleveland, QLD | 22 July | Redland Performing Arts Centre
Rockhampton, QLD | 28 July | Pilbeam Theatre
Mackay, QLD | 31 July | Mackay Entertainment and Convention Centre
Cairns, QLD | 5 August | Cairns Performing Arts Centre
Darwin, NT | 9 & 10 August | Darwin Entertainment Centre
Katherine, NT | 12 August | St Joseph’s College
Tennant Creek, NT | 15 August | Tennant Creek Civic Hall
Alice Springs, NT | 17 August | Araluen Art Centre
Albany, WA | 21 August | Albany Entertainment Centre
Margaret River, WA | 23 August | Margaret River HEART
Kalgoorlie, WA | 26 August | Goldfields Art Centre
Geelong, VIC | 30 & 31 August | Geelong Arts Centre
Wangaratta, VIC | 2 September | Wangaratta Performing Arts & Convention Centre