by Paula Citron
Il matrimonio segreto
University of Toronto Opera Division
Composed by Domenico Cimarosa
Directed by Allison Grant
Starring Catherine Marchant, Christopher Enns, Sarah Iles, Jeremy Ludwig, Erica Huang and Jerod Bertram
At the MacMillan Theatre
Domenico Cimarosa’s 1792 hit Il matrimonio segreto is filled with sparkling music set to Giovanni Bertati’s amusing libretto. The University of Toronto gave the opera buffa a delightful staging courtesy director Allison Grant.
Miah Im, the opera division’s new principal coach and conductor, certainly understands the tempi of opera buffa. She set a relentless pace which kept her student players scrambling to keep up.
Tenor Christopher Enns as Paolino was the most even singer, with a romantic light lyric voice but a strained coloratura. Contralto Erica Huang as Fidalma has luscious low notes and a distinctive woody top. The lower fach Jerod Bertram as Don Geronimo and Jeremy Ludwig as Count Robinson had the tough patter songs but showed promise in their negotiation.
As the secret bride Carolina, soprano Catherine Marchant displayed a honey-coloured lower register but more metallic top notes. Elisetta was, in a word, loud. The petite mezzo-soprano Sarah Iles has an unforgettable sharp, bright sound.