[Met Performance] CID:165450

Il Barbiere di Siviglia
Metropolitan Opera House, Wed, April 7, 1954

Il Barbiere di Siviglia (251)
Gioachino Rossini | Cesare Sterbini
Renato Capecchi

Victoria de los Angeles

Count Almaviva
Cesare Valletti

Dr. Bartolo
Fernando Corena

Don Basilio
Cesare Siepi

Jean Madeira

George Cehanovsky

Alessio De Paolis

Rudolf Mayreder

Alberto Erede

From February 19, 1954 until 1/23/71, the selection sung by Rosina in the Lesson Scene was Contro un cor, the aria originally written by Rossini for this episode.

Review 1:

Review of John Briggs in The New York Times


The Metropolitan Opera last evening presented its superbly restaged "Barber of Seville," with Victoria de los Angeles making her first appearance as Rosina.

Miss de los Angeles is the finest Rosina seen and heard at the Metropolitan in many, many years. This fine, intelligent and sincere artist has given a good account of herself in other roles, but her Rosina is something special. The part might have been written expressly for her.

To begin with, Miss de los Angeles sings the music with superb artistry. The taxing runs and roulades of "Una voce poco fa," which she sings in the original key, by the way, are done with the greatest ease and assurance. In the Lesson Scene she performs "Contro un cor che accende amore," the aria that Rossini wrote to be sung at this point. It is such a wonderful display-piece and so dramatically effective that one wonders how the custom of interpolating another aria here was ever started.

Aside from beautiful singing, Miss de los Angeles brings to the role a characterization which is charming, full of humor, arch and flirtatious (though not with the painful stagy flirtatiousness generally associated with Rosina) and altogether delightful.

With artists like this in principal roles, opera comes to life and becomes something more than a string of bravura vocalises. That was the cast last evening, when the uniformly fine cast gave a splendid account of itself.

Renato Capecchi, making his first appearance as Figaro, sang impressively the baritone's music. Others in the cast, heard previously this year, were Cesare Valletti, Fernando Corena, Cesare Slepi, and Jean Madeira.

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