Review: THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO Gets Reimagined at Classical Theatre Company

Classical Theatre Company Adapts a Classic Opera for the Modern Day

By: Nov. 25, 2022
Review: THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO Gets Reimagined at Classical Theatre Company
Get Access To Every Broadway Story

Unlock access to every one of the hundreds of articles published daily on BroadwayWorld by logging in with one click.

Existing user? Just click login.

**On a more solemn note, two Houston based actresses and University of Houston alumni, Jeana Magallon and Elissa Cuellar, lost everything this week when their apartment burned down. They have an extremely bright future ahead of them and it would be a shame if this setback stifled their creative spirit. If you'd like to know more and donate please click here to be taken to a fundraiser organized by Classical Theatre's J. J. Johnston.**

"That's a lot of laughs in there," one kind audience member said to me during one of the intermissions. "A lot of witticisms." There's something special about seeing a piece of work from almost two hundred and fifty years ago manage to play to a modern audience.

The Marriage of Figaro, adapted from the classic opera, is filled with wordplay, pratfalls, people diving out of windows, mistaken identity, purple nurples, lovesick bachelors, sexually mischievous pages, fourth wall breaks, and pop culture references. One particular callback to the Smashing Pumpkins took me so off guard that I found myself snorting for five seconds straight.

The story is as complicated as it is simple. Figaro (Calvin Hudson), a sort of Everyman character, desires to marry the love of his life, Suzanne (Elissa Cuellar). Unfortunately, Count Almaviva (Kregg Dailey) wishes to disrupt their happy union. Through a combination of schemes and luck, Figaro, Suzanne, and Countess Rosine (Brittany Bush) fight back against the Count and society itself. That's the simple part. The complicated part comes with everything else. It was truly impossible to guess what would happen next in the play. A big standout is the midpoint trial where Figaro is being sued by an older woman who wants him to marry her. I wouldn't dare spoil how it gets resolved but it has some wacky implications.

The most striking element of The Marriage of Figaro is the excellent costume design by Leah Smith. The characters felt inseparable from their outfits which neatly fit them all into stock archetypes. They somehow managed to represent a stylistic version of the twenties while remaining true to how they were depicted in the original opera. It was incredibly easy to tell a character's personality strictly based on what they were wearing. Swap out young lovers with 1920's flappers and you maintain the same effect. A personal highlight for me was the massive zoot suit adorned by Count Almaviva that reminded me of a bunch of bricks domineering the stage.

The Marriage of Figaro has all the hallmarks of a Classical Theatre Company production. As reliable as always, I recommend it if you have a fascination with preserving the classics or just enjoy a modern take on an old tale.