Il turco in Italia - Royal Opera House, 8 April
Il turco in Italia, it has to be said, is not Rossini's strongest work musically. There are endless yards of tiddly-pom, and even the arias are not his most melodic or memorable. The reason it's so widely-performed has to lie in the ingenious plot and superb dramatic pacing.
A strong production can paper over the weaknesses, and as they've demonstrated with their Covent Garden La Cenerentola and Il barbiere di Siviglia, Patrice Caurier and Moshe Leiser have a special affinity for Rossini's cruel wit. For Il turco in Italia, here on its second run, the broad-stroked humour is again echoed in the bold colours and sharp lines of the early sixties, where Aleksandra Kursak's gloved and girdled Fiorilla is fomenting her own sexual revolution, regardless of her hapless husband Alessandro Corbelli's protests.