It’s the mother of all bad hair days for Scylla in Leclair’s only opera. Based on Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Scylla is just a nymph going about her business. Not especially interested in love, she rejects the advances of shepherds and anyone else that thinks they’re in with a shot of winning her heart. When sea-god Glaucus tries the same thing she’s absolutely furious.

Now it gets complicated…Glaucus, who is now completely head-over-heels for Scylla, asks the sorceress Circe for help. Circe thinks Glaucus is a bit of a dish, falls in love with him, and tries to enchant him for herself. Glaucus finally comes to his senses and makes his escape, and just in the nick of time too as Scylla has decided she loves him after all and they live happily ever after…

Not so fast! Circe was not happy. Not. One. Bit.

Madly jealous, she poisons Scylla, and turns her into a six-headed monster, destined to sit atop the rocks on the Straits of Messina, snatching sailors from their passing ships.

Glaucus, who shows his true colours (somewhat shallow for a sea-God!) and doesn’t ask Scylla for a second date, makes a quick exit having caused such a fuss in the first place!

You can hear Leclair’s brilliant music as it follows the troubled lovers at the Wigmore Hall on Friday 8th March along with music by Bach, Purcell and Muffat

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