Vienna State Opera tickets 21 February 2025 - Il Barbiere di Siviglia | GoComGo.com

Il Barbiere di Siviglia

Vienna State Opera, Vienna, Austria
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7 PM
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E-tickets: Print at home or at the box office of the event if so specified. You will find more information in your booking confirmation email.

You can only select the category, and not the exact seats.
If you order 2 or 3 tickets: your seats will be next to each other.
If you order 4 or more tickets: your seats will be next to each other, or, if this is not possible, we will provide a combination of groups of seats (at least in pairs, for example 2+2 or 2+3).

Important Info
Type: Opera
City: Vienna, Austria
Starts at: 19:00
Acts: 2
Intervals: 1
Duration: 3h 10min

E-tickets: Print at home or at the box office of the event if so specified. You will find more information in your booking confirmation email.

You can only select the category, and not the exact seats.
If you order 2 or 3 tickets: your seats will be next to each other.
If you order 4 or more tickets: your seats will be next to each other, or, if this is not possible, we will provide a combination of groups of seats (at least in pairs, for example 2+2 or 2+3).

Cast
Performers
Bass-Baritone: Erwin Schrott (Basilio)
Baritone: Andrzej Filończyk (Figaro)
Conductor: Diego Matheuz
Tenor: Edgardo Rocha (Count Almaviva)
Mezzo-Soprano: Maria Kataeva (Rosina)
Baritone: Paolo Bordogna (Bartolo)
Creators
Composer: Gioachino Rossini
Librettist: Cesare Sterbini
Director: Herbert Fritsch
Author: Pierre Beaumarchais
Overview

As spectacularly as Gioachino Rossini's "Il Barbiere di Siviglia" failed at its premiere in 1816, it was quick to materialise into a worldwide success for the ages, with many a musical number having meshed itself into popular culture even to the general public who has never stepped foot in an opera house.

The barber of Seville introduces himself as the “factotum of the whole city”: as a helper in all situations. Like all barbers of his time, he is not only responsible for head hair and beard care, but also for pulling teeth and bloodletting. In addition, Figaro's range of responsibilities includes services for lovers and those wanting to get married, such as transporting secret messages or organizing serenades.

Despite his self-promotion, Figaro's ideas prove to be of little use when he is supposed to help Count Almaviva win Rosina's hand. Rosina namely lives locked up with her guardian Bartolo, who wants to secure her fortune by marrying her himself. All of Figaro's plans for how Almaviva could get closer to his beloved fail – and for the audience – in the most amusing ways. Ultimately, money and power make the Count the winner in this fight, which is only a game for himself but bitterly serious for Bartolo.

Gioachino Rossini's opera was originally called Almaviva, o sia l’Inutile Precauzione (Almaviva or The Useless Precaution) – and the main character was Count Almaviva. However, the audience's adoration quickly focused on the extroverted barber. This contributed to the fact that the great aria of the Count’s "Cessa di più resistere" has often been cut because of its length and immense difficulty. In fact, it is not the barber's strategies which escalate again and again, but rather the nobility’s means to power that help his love to win.

The opera is based on the play of the same name by Pierre-Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais, which premiered in 1775. He transformed the character types and plot elements of the Italian impromptu comedy, the Commedia dell’arte, first into an Opéra comique, then into a prose comedy that also included impressions of his journey to Spain. Later, the piece became the first part of Beaumarchais’ Figaro trilogy.

The opera also owes its enormous stage effectiveness to the libretto by Cesare Sterbini, who provided Gioachino Rossini with ideal music-making events, including one of his famous “crescendo rolls”: Bartolo's ally Basilio describes in his "Defamation Aria" in great detail the development of a rumor from a low whisper to the explosion in a “shitstorm!” And in the Finale of Act 1, the opera's text conjures up the image of a “hell forge” that the music delightfully depicts with the sound of hammers and anvils.

Short Summary
The Count of Almaviva is in love with Rosina, and Rosina loves the Count of Almaviva. So everything would be wonderful - if it weren't for Don Bartolo, Rosina's guardian, who won't let her out of the house or out of his sight. He wants to marry Rosina himself and can rely on the support of music teacher Don Basilio, who provides him with information about his rival. The Count's dedicated helper is the title character: Figaro, Barber of Seville and the Count's former servant. His many pieces of good advice result above all in stunningly funny stage scenes and at least do not prevent the two lovers from finding each other in the end.

History
Premiere of this production: 20 February 1816, Teatro Argentina, Rome

The Barber of Seville, or The Useless Precaution (Italian: Il barbiere di Siviglia, ossia L'inutile precauzione) is an opera buffa in two acts by Gioachino Rossini with an Italian libretto by Cesare Sterbini. The libretto was based on Pierre Beaumarchais's French comedy Le Barbier de Séville (1775). The première of Rossini's opera (under the title Almaviva, o sia L'inutile precauzione) took place on 20 February 1816 at the Teatro Argentina, Rome, with designs by Angelo Toselli.

Synopsis

Place: Seville, Spain
Time: 18th century

Act 1
The square in front of Bartolo's house

In a public square outside Bartolo's house a band of musicians and a poor student named Lindoro are serenading, to no avail, the window of Rosina ("Ecco, ridente in cielo"; "There, laughing in the sky"). Lindoro, who is really the young Count Almaviva in disguise, hopes to make the beautiful Rosina love him for himself – not his money. Almaviva pays off the musicians who then depart, leaving him to brood alone. Rosina is the young ward of the grumpy, elderly Bartolo and she is allowed very little freedom because Bartolo plans to marry her once she is of age and thus appropriate her not inconsiderable dowry.

Figaro approaches singing (Aria: "Largo al factotum della città"; "Make way for the factotum of the city"). Since Figaro used to be a servant of the Count, the Count asks him for assistance in helping him meet Rosina, offering him money should he be successful in arranging this. (Duet: "All'idea di quel metallo"; "At the idea of that metal"). Figaro advises the Count to disguise himself as a drunken soldier, ordered to be billeted with Bartolo, so as to gain entrance to the house. For this suggestion, Figaro is richly rewarded.

A room in Bartolo's house with four doors

The scene begins with Rosina's cavatina, "Una voce poco fa" ("A voice a little while ago"). (This aria was originally written in the key of E major, but it is sometimes transposed a semitone up into F major for coloratura sopranos to perform, giving them the chance to sing extra, almost traditional, cadenzas, sometimes reaching high Ds or even Fs.)

Knowing the Count only as Lindoro, Rosina writes to him. As she is leaving the room, Bartolo and Basilio enter. Bartolo is suspicious of the Count, and Basilio advises that he be put out of the way by creating false rumours about him (this aria, "La calunnia è un venticello" – "Calumny is a little breeze" – is almost always sung a tone lower than the original D major).

When the two have gone, Rosina and Figaro enter. Figaro asks Rosina to write a few encouraging words to Lindoro, which she has actually already written. (Duet: "Dunque io son...tu non m'inganni?"; "Then I'm the one...you're not fooling me?"). Although surprised by Bartolo, Rosina manages to fool him, but he remains suspicious. (Aria: "A un dottor della mia sorte"; "To a doctor of my class").

Count Almaviva, disguised as a soldier and pretending to be drunk, enters the house and demands to be quartered there. In fear of the drunken man, Berta the housekeeper rushes to Bartolo for protection. Bartolo tells the "soldier" that he (Bartolo) has an official exemption which excuses him from the requirement to quarter soldiers in his home. Almaviva pretends to be too drunk and belligerent to understand, and dares Bartolo to brawl. While Bartolo searches his cluttered desk for the official document which would prove his exemption, Almaviva whispers to Rosina that he is Lindoro in disguise, and passes a love-letter to her. Bartolo suspiciously demands to know what is in the piece of paper in Rosina's hands, but she fools him by handing over her laundry list. Bartolo and the Count argue loudly. Basilio enters; then Figaro, who warns that the noise of the argument is rousing the whole neighborhood. Finally, the noise attracts the attention of the Officer of the Watch and his troops, who crowd into the room. Bartolo demands that the Officer arrest the "drunken soldier". The Officer starts to do so, but Almaviva quietly reveals his true identity to the Officer, and he (the Officer) backs off and stands down. Bartolo and Basilio are astonished and mystified; Figaro laughs quietly at them. (Finale: "Fredda ed immobile, come una statua"; "Cold and still, just like a statue"). The confusion intensifies and causes everyone to suffer headaches and auditory hallucinations ("Mi par d'esser con la testa in un'orrida fucina; dell'incudini sonore l'importuno strepitar."; "My head seems to be in a fiery forge: the sound of the anvils deafens the ear.")

Act 2
A room in Bartolo's house with a piano

Almaviva again appears at the doctor's house, this time disguised as a priest who is also a singing tutor and pretending to act as substitute for the supposedly ailing Basilio, Rosina's regular singing teacher. Initially, Bartolo is suspicious, but does allow Almaviva to enter when the Count gives him Rosina's letter. He describes his plan to discredit Lindoro whom he believes to be one of the Count's servants, intent on pursuing women for his master. While Almaviva pretends to give Rosina her singing lesson, Figaro arrives to shave Bartolo. Bartolo demurs, but Figaro makes such a scene he agrees, but in order not to leave the supposed music master alone with Rosina, the doctor has Figaro shave him right there in the music room. When Basilio suddenly appears, he is bribed by a full purse from Almaviva and persuaded to leave again, with much discussion of how ill he looks. (Quintet: "Don Basilio! – Cosa veggo!"; "Don Basilio! – What do I see?"). Figaro begins to shave Bartolo, but Bartolo overhears the lovers conspiring, and angrily drives everybody away.

The scene returns to the location of act 1 with a grill looking out onto the square. Bartolo orders Basilio to have the notary ready to marry him to Rosina that evening. He also explains his plot to come between the lovers. Basilio leaves and Rosina arrives. Bartolo shows Rosina the letter she wrote to "Lindoro", and persuades her that this is evidence that Lindoro is merely a flunky of Almaviva and is toying with her at Almaviva's behest. Rosina believes him and agrees to marry him.

During an instrumental interlude, the music creates a thunder storm to indicate the passage of time. The Count and Figaro climb up a ladder to the balcony and enter the room through a window. Rosina shows Almaviva the letter and accuses him of betraying her. Almaviva reveals his identity and the two reconcile. While Almaviva and Rosina are enraptured by one another, Figaro keeps urging them to leave. Two people are heard approaching the front door, who later turn out to be Basilio and the notary. However, when the Count, Rosina, and Figaro attempt to leave by way of the ladder, they discover it has been removed. The marriage contract requires two witnesses; Figaro is one, but another is needed. The Count makes Basilio an offer he can't refuse: the choice of accepting a bribe and being a witness to his marriage or receiving two bullets in the head (an easy choice, Basilio says). He and Figaro witness the signatures to a marriage contract between the Count and Rosina. Bartolo barges in, accompanied by the Officer and the men of the watch, but too late; the marriage is already complete. The befuddled Bartolo (who was the one who had removed the ladder) is pacified by being allowed to retain Rosina's dowry. The opera concludes with an anthem to love ("Amor e fede eterna, si vegga in noi regnar!").

Venue Info

Vienna State Opera - Vienna
Location   Opernring 2

The Vienna State Opera is one of the leading opera houses in the world. Its past is steeped in tradition. Its present is alive with richly varied performances and events. Each season, the schedule features 350 performances of more than 60 different operas and ballets. The members of the Vienna Philharmonic are recruited from the Vienna State Opera's orchestra. The building is also the home of the Vienna State Ballet, and it hosts the annual Vienna Opera Ball during the carnival season.

The 1,709-seat Renaissance Revival venue was the first major building on the Vienna Ring Road. It was built from 1861 to 1869 following plans by August Sicard von Sicardsburg and Eduard van der Nüll, and designs by Josef Hlávka. The opera house was inaugurated as the "Vienna Court Opera" (Wiener Hofoper) in the presence of Emperor Franz Joseph I and Empress Elisabeth of Austria. It became known by its current name after the establishment of the First Austrian Republic in 1921. The Vienna State Opera is the successor of the Vienna Court Opera, the original construction site chosen and paid for by Emperor Franz Joseph in 1861.

The opera house was the first major building on the Vienna Ringstrasse commissioned by the Viennese "city expansion fund". Work commenced on the house in 1861 and was completed in 1869, following plans drawn up by architects August Sicard von Sicardsburg and Eduard van der Nüll. It was built in the Neo-Renaissance style by the renowned Czech architect and contractor Josef Hlávka.

Gustav Mahler was one of the many conductors who have worked in Vienna. During his tenure (1897–1907), Mahler cultivated a new generation of singers, such as Anna Bahr-Mildenburg and Selma Kurz, and recruited a stage designer who replaced the lavish historical stage decors with sparse stage scenery corresponding to modernistic, Jugendstil tastes. Mahler also introduced the practice of dimming the lighting in the theatre during performances, which was initially not appreciated by the audience. However, Mahler's reforms were maintained by his successors.

Herbert von Karajan introduced the practice of performing operas exclusively in their original language instead of being translated into German. He also strengthened the ensemble and regular principal singers and introduced the policy of predominantly engaging guest singers. He began a collaboration with La Scala in Milan, in which both productions and orchestrations were shared. This created an opening for the prominent members of the Viennese ensemble to appear in Milan, especially to perform works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Richard Strauss.

Ballet companies merge

At the beginning of the 2005–2006 season, the ballet companies of the Staatsoper and the Vienna Volksoper were merged under the direction of Gyula Harangozó.

From the 2010–2011 season a new company was formed called Wiener Staatsballet, Vienna State Ballet, under the direction of former Paris Opera Ballet principal dancer Manuel Legris. Legris eliminated Harangozós's policy of presenting nothing but traditional narrative ballets with guest artists in the leading roles, concentrated on establishing a strong in-house ensemble and restored evenings of mixed bill programs, featuring works of George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Jiří Kylián, William Forsythe, and many contemporary choreographers, as well as a reduced schedule of the classic ballets.

Opera ball

For many decades, the opera house has been the venue of the Vienna Opera Ball. It is an internationally renowned event, which takes place annually on the last Thursday in Fasching. Those in attendance often include visitors from around the world, especially prominent names in business and politics. The opera ball receives media coverage from a range of outlets.

Important Info
Type: Opera
City: Vienna, Austria
Starts at: 19:00
Acts: 2
Intervals: 1
Duration: 3h 10min
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