Far from being as reverberant as you might fear, the – admittedly heavily draped – restored Great Hall of Stirling Castle seemed to soak up the sound of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra so that there was a lack of brightness in the opening bars of Mozart's Overture to The Marriage of Figaro.
As the evening unfolded, however, it was clear that both conductor Nicholas Mcgegan and baritone Willliam Berger had the measure of the acoustic.
Domenico Cimarosa's 1792 cantata, Il Maestro di Cappella, was not just the party-piece of the programme, but also the best illustration of that, from Rosie Lock's piccolo in the overture to principle bass Nikita Naumov's frequent solo flourishes. Berger revelled in the theatricality of this playful piece, portraying the maestro trying to conduct an unruly orchestra, and proving that it has lost none of its capacity to amuse 220 year on.
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