Opera is a black tie affair

Christopher Gilmour promoting The Marriage of Figaro opera at Winslow Hall.
Christopher Gilmour promoting The Marriage of Figaro opera at Winslow Hall.

Winslow Hall will host a lavish production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro from Saturday in a special marquee set up in the grounds of the 17th century house.

Theatregoers are encouraged to adhere to the black tie dress code for the show, which features a 90 minute interval to allow time for a picnic.

Christopher Gilmour and Mardi Gilmour promoting The Marriage of Figaro opera at Winslow Hall. 120629M-A672

Christopher Gilmour and Mardi Gilmour promoting The Marriage of Figaro opera at Winslow Hall. 120629M-A672

Yvonne Fontane, who is directing and appearing in the performance, said: “We are doing it in period costumes from when it was conceived in the late 18th century, so it will be very visual.

“We have really made an effort to bring in costumes that are quite special. We have a full cast, chorus and orchestra. And Winslow Hall is so beautiful.

“The Marriage Of Figaro is a genius piece of theatre that goes very deeply into human relationships, but in a very subtle way.

“It is still relevant now. It’s about human relationships and they haven’t changed.

“If you are going to see one opera, then this is a very good introduction and one to see.”

Yvonne, who is currently filming rehearsals and watching them back with cast members, said: “This show is even more of a challenge as we are starting almost from scratch as we have now moved from Stowe School to Winslow.”

“The trick is to be as prepared as you can be.

“There’s an awful lot of work in the months leading up to it. It’s a challenge but it’s not insurmountable.”

The production features nine singers, a 30-strong orchestra and a large support crew – who have been busy working on everything from the set design, to period costumes and lighting.

Yvonne began her career as a singer. After performing the role of Carmen more than 150 times, she made her directorial debut with Stowe Opera in 2004.

The Marriage of Figaro will be performed from 6pm on various days between Saturday July 21-Sunday 29.

For more details and matinee performance times visit www.stoweopera.com