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Seriously sexy opera: a fun live screening

Steamy and fun moments at latest Royal Opera House live screening

by Yolanda Shamash

What an amazing night it was last night at Royal Opera House live cinema screening of 'L'Elisir d'Amore'! I watched it quite close to the Royal Opera House at the Vue cinema Piccadily in London, and director Laurent Pelly's version of Donizetti's 'L'Elisir d'Amore' turned out to be raunchy and funny and extremely moving.


The opera first premiered in 1852 in Milan and this production sees it set in 1950s rural Italy - with Vespas and sweaty truck drivers and a very cute dog (yes, a real one) to add to the rustic charm of the impressive set.


L'Elisir d'Amore is the story of Nemorino, a naive village boy, and his seemingly unrequited love for the coy and flirtatious Adina. When quack Doctor Dulcamara arrives in town, Nemorino begs him for a potion to make Adina fall in love with him, and is unknowingly given a bottle of Bordeaux wine. 'Drink up and she will be in love with you within 24 hours,' he is told. I will say no more about this fun plot but I will say that there are some really moving scenes, and both Lucy Crowe (playing Adina) and Vittorio Grigolo (Nemorino) give stunning performances. You can feel the passion growing between them - there's quite a bit of leg on show from Adina. And Nemorino's dancing is wild!


This is, of course, far more than a romance. There are moments of brilliant comic havoc too - from the chorus of hilariously impressionable Italian village peasants, to the cunning ploys of Doctor Dulcamara, and to Sergeant Belcore's ridiculously military pursuit of Adina - he's pictured here looming aggresively over Adina. All great fun.


The ROH's off-stage interviews with the cast and conductor Daniele Rustioni really add something special to the live screening performance. Lucy Crowe, in particular, explains her role as Adina with huge insight into the character, discussing Adina's conflicted feelings for Nemorino. All in all, a great opera night out, and an inexpensive one at that.


There's another live cinema screening of L'Elisir d'Amore on Sunday 30th November - find your nearest live screening cineman here. Book for L'Elisir d'Amore at The Royal Opera House. Coming up next in the Royal Opera House live cinema season is 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' - a ballet interpretation of the Lewis Carroll classic. Find out about other ROH cinema screenings



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