Continuing with our series (placing our 4 operas in historical and cultural context), here is a look at The Barber of Seville and its roots in the Italian commedia dell'arte tradition. Now that sounds pretty esoteric, right? But no, it has a lot to do with the plot and characters in the Rossini opera and, when you come to think about it, has a lot to do with what passes as nightly entertainment on our multitudinous television networks! (Think situation comedies!) Nicolas Reveles explains it all to you! Enjoy.