Pop-Up Opera have succeeded in producing a truly farcical Barber Of Seville.

Despite the temptations to ham up Rossini’s crackling score the cast, on the whole, play it straight and that’s hats-off to director James Hurley.

The laughs come from Harry Percival’s witty surtitles and some delightfully silly gags.

After all it’s a double-edged story about old Dr Bartolo falling in love with his dazzling young ward Rosina and his unrequited love being further thwarted by the youthful rich Count Almaviva aided by his side-kick Figaro.

Old Bartolo is played by a round-faced Alistair Ollerenshaw - the perfect voice for this, with the odd wrong note.

Flora McIntosh sounds rather mature for Rosina but has comic charm, Tom Stoddart’s Figaro (in fitness gear) is one to watch and Ciaran O’Leary hits the notes as Almaviva but tends to bleat.

Steven East is a class act as Rosina’s slimy music teacher Basilio and Emily Blanch is impressive as the knackered maid Berta.

Keeping this all together punctiliously is Berrak Dyer on the keyboards – even the ensembles are spot on.

Court Garden Farm Barn in Ditchling provides a pretty setting.

Louise Flind

The Barber Of Seville returns to this venue on Saturday, September 24