THIS Don Pasquale is that rare thing: an attempt to take a comic opera and bring it up to date in a way that is genuine and relevant to contemporary audiences.

The story is updated to modern Wales where the Don is the proud owner of a kebab van (Don-er Pasquale).

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(Picture: Robert Workman)

He is also an ageing weight lifter who thinks he has still got it, and that he and his van are a good catch.

He wants a sexy young wife to produce an heir rather than give the van to his popstar wannabe nephew Ernesto.

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(Picture: Robert Workman)

The story is how the wily Russell Brand-esque Malatesta, sung by the fine baritone Quirijin de Lang, tricks the Don into “marrying” his sister from Llandudno.

This is to teach Don a lesson, with the sister becoming an out with the kebabs in with the vegan nightmare.

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(Picture: Robert Workman)

Sung gloriously and acting with huge comedic flair by Harriet Eyley, she is really the girlfriend of Ernesto, who is marvellously sung and acted by Nico Darmani.

The characters are all larger than life caricatures of Welsh types, so plenty of South East Wales accents, contemporary local slang (think Ruth Jones in Gavin and Stacey), the Don, hilariously taken by Andrew Shore has a Greco-Valleys voice, and there is a surprise video appearance by North Walian Bryn Terfel.

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(Picture: Robert Workman)

All of the singers are perfect in their roles and the musicians on stage (Malatesta’s funky band) also take part in some of the zany action which adds to the general fun and mischievous.

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(Picture: Robert Workman)

An excellent production from director Daisy Evans and designer Loren Elstein with Donzietti’s score skilfully adapted by Stephen Higgins.

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(Picture: Robert Workman)

The new libretto is actually funny, and it will be interesting to see how the this very (South) Wales show fares when it hits the road as half of this tour’s venues are in England.

Touring: wno.org.uk

Review by Mike Smith