Joshua Bloom on Le nozze di Figaro
Joshua Bloom on returning to Garsington with old friends and the role of Figaro:
Figaro is one of the great masterpieces of the repertoire and it never fails to yield to me new treasures whenever I perform it. The overture inevitably brings a huge grin to my face, and the score is a cornucopia of profundity and delight. The role of Figaro itself comprises elements of cunning and stupidity, light-heartedness and anger, joy and anguish, and the way a director's interpretation balances all these contrasting elements is always different and often fascinating.
This will be my fourth season at Garsington, having made my debut in La Cenerentola in 2009. The festival has a special place in my heart - working here is like being part of a large family, and the setting is, of course, quite magical.
In Le nozze di Figaro this year, I am looking forward immensely to working with director John Cox and conductor Dougie Boyd again. I have known John since 2000 when I was involved in his stunning production of Strauss's Capriccio in Sydney, and we have since worked together on his iconic Rake's Progress in Australia, and more recently Fidelio at Garsington. His nuanced and tasteful approach is ideal for Mozart, and one always learns greatly from him in terms of characterisation and stagecraft.
With Dougie I have worked on Don Giovanni and Fidelio at Garsington, and he is an absolute delight - a fine musician, unfailingly good-humoured, and pretty much unflappable. He and John make a terrific team.
Many of the cast I know already, most notably my Susanna, Jennifer France, from Fidelio, and Stephen Richardson as Bartolo, with whom I have worked several times, and whom I admire greatly. Figaro requires a cohesive ensemble and, in my experience, Garsington always assembles casts of people who are not only excellent artists but also lovely people.
I am excited to see how it all turns out!
Find out more about Le nozze di Figaro.