Bel canto goes Broadway!

A hilarious musical comedy/operatic mash-up, Under the Overture is a fast and furious backstage farce that builds to an all-singing musical grand finale. It's the play that becomes an opera!

The play features the glorious music of Rossini in a way you've never heard (or seen) before. Imagine the slapstick of Noises Off colliding with the sparkling overture from The Barber of Seville in a bravura operatic stunt and you'll have an idea of the fun in store in this truly unique entertainment.
 
It all takes place in a provincial opera house in the nineteenth century, a rough and tumble time when audiences were fierce but singers were fiercer. And no singers more ferocious than the Opera Freneticco, the worst singing troupe that ever roamed the length and breadth of Italy!
 
The situation: Truffo Freneticco and company are stranded by a blizzard in the same village as the great composer Rossini. To their amazement he agrees to attend their birthday performance of his opera The Barber of Seville. These losers see this as their big chance and their efforts to achieve glory make for the lunatic intrigue backstage before the show begins. When a catastrophe further complicates matters during the overture, all hell breaks loose and the play morphs into a singing three-ring circus of slapstick maneuvers with everyone scrambling to stay the imminent disaster. The result, as their curtain goes up and ours comes down, is comedic chaos!
 
A fast-paced two-hour evening of music and madness, Under the Overture affords ample opportunity for inventive, even spectacular staging. And it invites its cast of ten musical clowns to make spectacles of themselves. Check out the audio clips on the next page for a taste of the musical antics. It's diva versus divo - and may the loudest voice win!
The great Rossini mystery ...
An enduring mystery in musical history revolves around the composer Rossini's "great renunciation" - his quitting at the peak of his career and never writing for the stage again.

Theories abound on just why the Maestro threw in the operatic towel, ​​
but ​no one really knows.


Well... we do:

Blame it on the
​Opera Freneticco!

"It is quite enough to make one want to boo oneself out of the profession for good and all!"
Rossini, quoted in A Life of Rossini