What is your favourite moment in the opera?
That’s a tricky one. Strangely enough, one of my favourite moments has always been the very, very end, where, after all the dramatic effects and the descent into hell, then comes the slightly mad finale chorus of all the other characters who want to know what’s going on. And then there’s this tiny, almost tongue in cheek violin motif, where the orchestra is pared down to virtually nothing before the final chord. There’s something quite cheeky about it. It’s also after the end of the supper scene – whatever happens there, I can tackle with a certain amount of abandon!
What have you been enjoying during the rehearsal process so far?
I have just loved coming back to the role for the first time after about ten years. I did the role in my twenties. It’s good to come back to it with a bit more life baggage, but also with a sort of freshness. Also, with Alessandro [Talevi, director], you never know what we’re going to come up next in rehearsal, which idea he’ll be throwing at us today for trying out. It’s fun to go along with those ideas.
Is Don Giovanni is different from a lot of other baritone roles?
Yes. It’s an odd role, sometimes it feels almost more like an acting role than a singing role – the vocal range is actually quite narrow and it never explores the upper range of my voice, the higher register. It’s much more about colours and characterisation.