In Review: Zabala, Ollarsaba, and Boehler impress in Minnesota Opera "Le nozze di Figaro"

"Bass-baritone Richard Ollarsaba is fantastic as Figaro, servant to the pompous aristocrat Count Almaviva. . . Ollarsaba, who was a swaggering Escamillo in “Carmen” two years ago, has no patience with Almaviva and makes that robustly clear through every scene, especially in his spitting-nails cavatina,“Se vuol ballare,” and the wedding scene. . . Adriana Zabala is fearless as the lusty Cherubino. . . Andres Acosta and Matt Boehler are a lot of fun as Basilio and Bartolo” -Jay Furst, Post Bulletin

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"Richard Ollarsaba displays a rich voice throughout his range. . . Add strong singing and vivid comic characterizations by Adriana Zabala, Matt Boehler, and Nadia Fayad, and you have quite the impressive ensemble." -Rob Hubbard, St. Paul Pioneer Press

Read full review. "The doe-eyed glances between her and Adriana Zabala’s excellent Cherubino are one of the production’s most reliable sources of laughter.” -Basil Considine, Twin Cities Arts Reader

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"Arizona native bass-baritone, Richard Ollarsaba, led the evening’s show in the title role, gifting our cities with a fine performance. . . Ollarsaba warmed up quickly, taking a poised and broad command of his role as primo uomo. His performance of the famous melody “Non più andrai, farfollone amoroso” at the end of Act I was perfectly sarcastic, witty, and fun. And one must not fail to mention at this point the stellar and wildly wily performance of Adriana Zabala. Heralded by The Wall Street Journal as showing "tremendous stamina and boy-like flair" in her performance of the title role in the American premiere of Jonathan Dove's The Adventures of Pinocchio, Zabala performed Cherubino splendidly. Among the singer actors in this production, she ranks premier as she understood so well the bearing and swagger of a young, arrogant, handsome adolescent boy. Her understanding, in fact, was so spot on that there were times in which I forgot I was watching a female performing in boy’s clothing…Zabala was astounding to watch and marvelous to hear. A true delight." -LifeInRevue Blog Read full review.

"The audience’s awareness that Cherubino is, in fact, a female actor playing a male, dressed in women’s clothing, adds a whole new level to the farce. In this production Adriana Zabala adds a roguish sense of mischief to the character." - Twin Cities Geek

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