The Marriage of Figaro // Opera Australia

Buoyant and yielding in the musical interpretation flowing from Jane Glover's elegant baton, The Marriage of Figaro - sung in English and more enjoyable as a result for a theatre full of people in summery mood - also has the distinction of having one of the most congenial performers of the central role of Susanna to appear in this much-revived staging.

Natalie Christie is a young Melburnian, back from study in Europe, who has every attribute needed to make a success of this part. Her height and build, physical resourcefulness and air of pert insouciance amount to ideal specifications for the dramatic qualities of a soubrette; and she matches - no, surpasses - this with a clear-toned, accurately aimed soprano voice of comfortable range and size.

Although the part of Susanna, written by Mozart for the much-admired, London-born Nancy Storace, is founded within the soubrette tradition, it goes far beyond this in theatrical and musical terms. In the vocal hierarchy of the opera's ensembles, her soprano ranks above that of the Countess and often takes the higher vocal line.

Christie, on the evidence of this exceptionally talented performance, would be a natural choice for this part whenever Opera Australia chooses to stage it... It's hard to imagine a better fit between a singer and an outstanding and immortal stage identity."


Roger Covell - The Sydney Morning Herald