Best Of 2022

Best Standing Ovation

The rousing production of Mozart’s sublime comedy The Marriage of Figaro by the opera department of the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music earned an equally rousing, well-deserved standing ovation, one of the loudest we’ve heard in a long time. A breathtaking romp of brilliant singing and staging featured a nimble cast all performing in masks. You’d never know it: Every word projected into the hall was crisply articulated and beautifully sung. Director Robin Guarino’s skillful direction brought out the opera’s exploration of sexual abuse, class and privilege, and the sly humor underlying everything and everyone. It was fleet, fast and funny, deftly accompanied by the always superb CCM Philharmonia led by student conductor Brian McCann. The highlight was Cherubino’s escape in Act II. This excessively hormonal character usually jumps out a window upstage, but Guarino had him leap into the orchestra pit. Gasps were followed by delighted cheers.