Carsen’s exuberant schoolroom staging is well on its way to becoming a Glyndebourne classic, bringing out all the energy and excess in Handel’s first opera for the London stage. The composer’s colourful, tune-filled score – bright with brass fanfares and memorable arias including Lascia ch’io pianga – is one of his finest, sweeping the audience from laughter to love and back again, in this exotic, East-meets-West musical fantasy.
Two young singers lead the cast. Countertenor Jake Arditti takes the title role and, fresh from playing Michal in Glyndebourne Festival’s Saul, soprano Anna Devin is Almirena. American soprano Jacquelyn Stucker makes her Glyndebourne debut as Armida, with bass-baritone Aubrey Allicock as Saracen king Argante.
The New Victoria Theatre opened in 1992 and established itself as one of the foremost theatres in the South East. Boasting state of the art facilities, excellent acoustics and clear sight lines it has hosted first class theatre from the likes of the Royal Shakespeare Company, National Theatre and the Peter Hall Company.