This March 11th, world-renowned Scot Sir David McVicar returns to Scottish Opera (SO), to direct of Il trittico (The Triptych) – a new co-production with Welsh National Opera of Puccini’s Il tabarro (The Cloak), Suor Angelica (Sister Angelica) and Gianni Schicchi. Only one complete performance of Il trittico has taken place in Scotland and that was by Sadler’s Wells Opera at Glasgow’s King’s Theatre in 1957. Sir David is returning to SO after a gap of two years when he worked with the company on Verdi’s Falstare.
Opening at Glasgow’s Theatre Royal before touring to Festival Theatre Edinburgh, this is the first time he has directed the epic triple bill and the first time SO has staged it.
Sir David McVicar said “Il trittico is such a huge project, with a big and exceptional cast performing in three separate operas, a gripping evening in the theatre that takes us from the dark drama of Il tabarro, through the unbearable heartbreak of Suor Angelica to the acerbic and hilarious Gianni Schicchi, one of the greatest comic operas ever composed. It’s beautiful, tragic, hilarious, epic, and I couldn’t be prouder to be directing Scottish Opera’s first ever production of the three operas, so rarely seen, as Puccini intended, performed in one evening.”
Il trittico has an early start time of 6pm, with a long second interval for dinner and drinks. Audiences are able to order food from the theatre in advance, and are advised to do so as early as possible as availability is limited.
With Dementia Friendly values at their core, these shorter performances (under two hours including an interval) are open to all, whether you’re recovering from an operation, have breathing difficulties, are living with dementia, have a young baby or on the autism spectrum.
The Access performances, which include a presenter to help guide audiences through the story, are conducted by Head of Music Derek Clark, and performed by a cast of singers. Doors open 45 minutes before the start time so there is no need to rush, brighter lighting levels than usual in the auditorium and there are television screens around the theatre for those who prefer to watch in the lobby or sit in a quiet area.
Half-hour pre-show talks, delving into the detail of Il trittico are also available this season. Those who are visually impaired can take advantage of audio-described performances, where a live commentary is provided, describing the action on stage without compromising the music. As part of the experience, a recorded introduction to the operas is provided in advance, and there is a free Touch Tour of the set and a live audio introduction before the start of the performance.