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The essence of Grand Opera first performed in Cairo in 1871. Set in Egypt at the time of the pharoes. A captain of guard (Radames) is in love with Aida, an Ethiopian slave girl - who happens also to be the daughter of the king of Ethiopia. Her mistress, Amneris, is also in love with Radames. When the Ethiopians invade Radames is chosen to lead the army. When they return victorious Radames asks for all the Ethiopian slaves to be released - except Aida and her father who persuades her to trick Radames into revealing the plans of the Egyptian army - but he suggests that they all run away to Ethiopia together. When Radames is accused of treason he gives himself up to let Aida and her father escape but is condemned to be improisoned alive. As the last stones are put in place Aida appears and joins him in the tomb so that they might die together.
Sung in Italian with English surtitles
11-year-old Alice is jolted out of her bored daydreams in the school holidays when she meets a talking rabbit who insists she follow him to a mysterious Wonderland... In this fantastical place Alice comes across a number of peculiar characters, including a relaxed caterpillar, a happy cat, a depressive hare, a white knight, a romantic duchess, a mad hatter and a sleepy dormouse, and learns that all is not well in Wonderland: a mysterious (and very cross) Queen of Hearts seems distressingly keen to chop off everyone's heads...
A revival of the family opera commissioned by Opera Holland Park in 2013.
In this sensitive, spiritual and ultimately uplifting journey inspired by the events of 9/11, a disparate group of individuals is trapped high up in one of the Twin Towers, caught between earth and heaven, life and death. Described as possessing a 'rare power to remind listeners of their own inner freedom' (Guardian), Davies' distinctive sound world combines unrestrained exuberance with emotional depth. Her requiem for choir, strings and electronics, As with Voices and with Tears, was nominated for a 2011 South Bank Sky Arts Award.
World Premiere. Running time: 1hr 30mins with no interval.
The story of the gypsy girl Carmen whose love and passion switch from one man to another with tragic consequences. Probably the world's most famous opera and tunes. A Spanish story of love, treachery, passion and betrayal.
The Dark Mirror is a startling reflection on art and performance, love, death and the passage of time. In this production, Schubert's song-cycle inhabits a boldly expressionist landscape; the 'Winter's Journey' and its grief-stricken young lover are mirrored in a dynamic confrontation between past and present, maturity and naivety, early Romanticism and the irony of post-Weimar cabaret.
Sung in German with English surtitles
An opera set in an airport. A flight is delayed and people are forced to bed down in the terminal, resulting in revelations, naughtiness and the end of daydreams.
Sung in English with English surtitles
Puccini's Il trittico consists of three one-act, contrasting pieces. The first opera Il tabarro (The Cloak), is set on a barge on the Seine, and explores an unusually dark setting of a tragedy which ends in violence and brutality, while Suor Angelica looks at the themes of sin, redemption and motherhood within a repressive religious life. The triptych ends with Gianni Schicchi which sets the story of a clever rogue and a greedy Florentine family in the 1950s. Sung in Italian with English surtitles.
The story is a tragic one: forced into marrying the son of the blind Barbarian King Archibaldo, young Fiora continues an affair with her lover Avito right under the nose of her obsessive father in law, which leads to tragic consequences. Musically the opera draws us into a luscious soundscape of which Puccini would have been proud. It is a thrilling score - epic, sweeping, imaginative and rich.
Revival of the 2007 production Opera in three acts. Sung in Italian with English surtitles.
Amongst the most popular of Verdi's operas, La traviata is the work of a master of the musical drama. Its perfumed arias and soaring choruses vividly depict the ravishingly decadent but glamorous world of Parisian high society as the background to a heart rending story of romantic happiness destroyed. Original book called La Dame aux Camelias.
Set in the prohibition era of speakeasies and bootlegging, with Violetta's lover Alfredo a passionate young man whose optimism has been shaken by time at the front in the first world war, Violetta's protector ?the Baron' a gang boss, and Alfredo's father a crooked politician, this new production reveals the hypocrisy and heartache behind the glittering fa?ade of parties. Featuring a stunning young cast whose acting abilities are more than a match for their vocal talents, and with Verdi's sumptuous melodies accompanied by a trio of clarinet, cello and piano, this production is bound to be every bit as entertaining and moving as La Boheme. Running time: 2hrs 15mins
Set in India during the Raj this is the story of forbidden love, patriotism and self sacrifice.
Sun in French with English surtitles, Jul 27 is The Christine Collins Young Artists performance.
Centred around two warring kings and the earlier marriage, in babyhood, of their respective children, one of the kings is due to produce the bride this very day. Instead he arrives with his three hulking sons, saying that his daughter Ida has renounced men and is running an exclusive women's university. This is a wonderful satirical romp through the women's movement and includes knights, cross-dressing nobles and repressed maidens who are incarcerated in the university, which any man would enter on pain of death.
Running time: 2hrs inclu. one interval of twenty mintures.
With glittering vocal showpieces and moving arias, Handel's slant on the perils of romantic love juxtaposes the heroic and the comic, the serious and the playful. A Persian Ruler's infatuation is triggered by the singing of his general's daughter. So instead of concentrating on his planned campaign against the Greeks, Xerxes prefers to focus on the sexual conquest of his brother's beloved - with unexpected results.