Western Suburbs Weekly - - Front Page - TANYA MACNAUGHTON

NOT only is tenor John Long­muir look­ing for­ward to mak­ing his WA Opera de­but as a prin­ci­pal in City of Perth’s Opera in the Park The

Bar­ber of Seville, he is also thrilled at the prospect of his fam­ily watch­ing the per­for­mance.

Born in Scot­land, Long­muir’s fam­ily moved to Perth when he was nine years old.

He trained at Aus­tralian Opera Stu­dio and left Perth five years ago to pur­sue his op­er­atic ca­reer. Now based in Syd­ney, Long­muir has sung the role of Count Al­ma­viva twice with Opera Australia and will reprise the role for Opera in the Park at Supreme Court Gar­dens on Fri­day, March 6.

The free an­nual event is ex­pected to at­tract an au­di­ence of about 20,000 peo­ple and will be sung in Ital­ian with English sub­ti­tles.

“The role was my de­but for Opera Australia back at the start of 2011, and then I did it again in 2012,” Long­muir said.

“It’s very highly set singing-wise with a lot of col­oratura, so a lot of runs and vo­cal gym­nas­tics.

“I get through to the end of a pro­duc­tion like The Bar­ber of Seville and I’m ab­so­lutely shat­tered and need to have a nap, but the fact I’ve got through it makes me feel good.”

The comic opera re­volves around Long­muir’s Count Al­ma­viva, who is determined to woo the beau­ti­ful Rosina with­out re­veal­ing his high sta­tus or wealth.

Young bar­ber Fi­garo helps him on his mission and much hi­lar­ity en­sues with Al­ma­viva’s thinly veiled cos­tumes and dis­guises.

“It is an opera where most peo­ple will recog­nise pretty much all of the tunes,” Long­muir said. “Whether it be from that re­ally fa­mous Looney Tunes car­toon with Bugs Bunny, ad­verts or movies.

“It’s a lit­tle bit of a com­pli­cated story but not too com­pli­cated that you won’t un­der­stand, and it’s a hi­lar­i­ous piece of theatre be­cause it’s just so im­plau­si­ble to mod­ern-day au­di­ences.”

Long­muir said the big­gest test on the evening would be singing out­doors.

“I have noth­ing to rely on acous­ti­cally,” he said. “So we’ll be singing it with am­pli­fi­ca­tion and no walls to bounce your sound off, but I love a chal­lenge.

“It’s so tune­ful and such a happy, vi­brant mov­ing piece.”

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie­mu­ni­ d433499

John Long­muir is more than familiar with the role of Count Al­ma­viva.

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