by Paula Citron
The Toronto Summer Music Festival always features an opera showcasing young artists auditioned from across the country. The singers in Rossini’s The Barber of Seville are very good, and what’s more, director Michael Patrick Albano has created enough stage business to keep things moving along nicely. In short, even for people like me who are “Barbered-out”, I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
Agnes Grossmann conducts with panache, taste and energy. Her crescendi are never bombast, and her approach is very, very musical. The cracker-jack National Academy Orchestra is filled with talented young musicians and they play wonderfully well for Grossmann.
All the young singers have enormous promise. They can also act. In fact, there is not a weak link in the ensemble, and one assumes it is the same with the alternate cast. Kudos to the festival for giving us a very good summer opera experience.
The Barber of Seville continues until Sunday and is well worth the visit.
From the MacMillan Theatre, I’m Paula Citron, arts reviewer for CLASSICAL 96.3 FM.