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BBC – The Birth of an Opera (2016)

BBC Danielle de Niese The Birth of an Opera

Documentary in which soprano Danielle de Niese provides a unique backstage pass to her preparations for the role of Rosina in Glyndebourne’s 2016 production of Rossini’s masterpiece The Barber of Seville, one of the greatest comic operas, to mark the 200th anniversary of its premiere. The film gives an unparalleled insight into how a top opera professional shapes a performance, both musically and dramatically. As well as actuality filming of all stages – from singing to warm-ups to costume fittings, lighting and set building on stage, through to hair and make-up – there are masterclass sessions with director Annabel Arden, conductor Enrique Mazzola and other key cast members to explore key scenes in depth. Danni also visits the Rome theatre where the disastrous premiere took place in 1816. The film also features interviews with Arden, Mazzola, designer Joanna Parker and other key figures in the production, and footage from the staged version of the opera throughout.

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