Love, laughter, and tangled affairs
It’s supposed to be the happiest day of Figaro and Susanna’s lives but will their wedding even go ahead? Count Almaviva is determined to seduce Susanna, but will his wife find out? Will Figaro be able to outwit his master, for the honour of his bride? And where does young Cherubino fit into it all? In this captivating tale of love, loyalty and mistaken identities, the quick-witted barber navigates the twists and turns of 18th century social intricacies with charm and humour, and clever schemes which will keep you guessing until the final note.
WNO’s period-set production with elegant sets and opulent costumes has all the ingredients of a classic opera. So, join us as we step into the world of The Marriage of Figaro where love and laughter converge in a whirlwind of clever schemes and Mozart’s melodic brilliance.
Leading production support from Colwinston Charitable Trust. 2024/2025 Season supported by Dunard Fund.
Cast & Creative
It is the wedding day of Susanna and Figaro, servants to the Count and Countess Almaviva. Concerned the Count will revive the tradition of droit de seigneur, allowing a Lord to sleep with a bride, Figaro vows to scupper his master. Doctor Bartolo and his old housekeeper Marcellina discuss a loan contract which states that Figaro must repay what he owes, or marry her. Cherubino, the page, declares his love for all the women in the house – particularly the Countess. Figaro cunningly gets the household to sing the praises of their master for renouncing his claim on Susanna and asks the Count to bless their marriage. The Count delays and orders Cherubino to join the army.
Figaro, Susanna and the Countess plot to stop the Count’s plans and expose his infidelity with an anonymous letter claiming the Countess has a lover. At the same time sending Cherubino dressed as Susanna to meet the Count, enabling the Countess to catch him red-handed. Cherubino has to hide as the Count interrupts their planning. While Figaro tries to smooth things over, Marcellina demands he marry her as payment for his debt.
The Countess gets Susanna to arrange to meet the Count. But the Count overhears Figaro and Susanna plotting and vows revenge. Under pressure from Marcellina’s lawyer, Don Curzio, Figaro claims he needs parental consent to marry and his parents are unknown. Marcellina spots a birthmark on his arm and realises he is her long-lost son, and reveals that Bartolo is his father. In celebration Marcellina and Bartolo agree to marry and a double wedding takes place.
Marcellina and Figaro help Barbarina look for the lost pin that confirms the Count’s tryst with Susanna. Figaro thinks Susanna has been unfaithful and swears vengeance. Further confusion arises as the Countess and Susanna appear, wearing each other’s clothes – Figaro hides. Both Cherubino and then the Count try to seduce ‘Susanna’. Figaro pretends to woo ‘the Countess’, infuriating Susanna until he admits he knew it was her. Continuing the ruse, Figaro declares his love for ‘the Countess’. The Count declares everyone witness to her infidelity. She reveals herself, making the Count beg for forgiveness. The long-awaited celebrations ensue.