Opera della Luna rides high in updated The Daughter of the Regiment

Daughter of the Regiment at Buxton Opera House. Photo by Robert Workman.
Daughter of the Regiment at Buxton Opera House. Photo by Robert Workman.

The original story of Donizetti’s opera The Daughter of the Regiment is about a baby abandoned at barracks who is brought up by mlitary personnel, writes Mavis Kirkham

She grows up, falls in love with someone deemed unsuitable by her many adopted fathers and gradually her parentage is revealed and true love prevails.

This Opera della Luna production adapts the story to a Californian gang of bikers called the Regiment, the beloved is a Hispanic immigrant and our heroine’s true origins lie with the American upper class.

The adaption not only works, it makes for much humour.

Ellin Pritchard uses her strong soprano voice to great effect in the lead role and her exuberant acting is just right for the wild Marie who cannot be contained by the conventions needed for social climbing.

The bikers sing and act with great skill and energy and Jeremy Vinogradov is equally good in drag in Act 2.

Robert Gildon, as the butler/chauffer, Mr Hortense, has a lovely baritone voice and his comic acting is superb, especially in Act 2.

The music is lovely, with haunting arias and memorable tunes.

The set, lighting and costumes costumes are just right. This production is also very funny.

There is only one more performance in Buxton, this Sunday, July 15, and it is well worth seeing.