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Based on historical accounts of the Warring States period of ancient China, The General and the Prime Minister is filled with drama and entertainment. Set against an emotive backdrop of trickery, power struggles and personal determination, the influence of this story continues to be felt in China today. The legend of the White Snake is a famous piece of Chinese folklore. The story's characters are household names in the country, with Lady White as a symbol of rebellion, bravery and a quest for true love.
One of China's most respected and innovative cultural exports, The China National Peking Opera Company has staged more than 500 masterful historical dramas since its formation five decades ago. The company returns to London following an acclaimed season at Sadler's Wells in November 2014.
Puccini's most enduring opera. The story of the love of the poor poet Rodolfo for the consumptive seamstress Mimi. Set in the Latin Quarter of Paris the course of their love is constantly threatened by Rodolfo's jealousy and Mimi's illness. The painter Marcello and the provocative Musetta are the other main characters. This is where 'your tiny hand is frozen' comes from and the last few bars, as Rodolfo realises Mimi is dead, are some of opera's most moving moments.
Renowned for his inventive, contemporary reinterpretations of classic theatre and opera Adam Spreadbury-Maher, who is directing this time around, will focus upon the quintessential quartet - Mimi, Musetta, Rodolfo (Ralph) and Marcello (Mark) - and it will be lifted from when Puccini set his opera in the early 19th century to present day East London. The production will lay bare the dangerous and damaging effects of co-dependent relationships against a backdrop of spiralling rents and social media.
An American naval officer (Pinkerton) 'acquires' a 15 year old Geisha wife during a stay in Japan - but has no intention of staying with her. After a while he returns to the USA and marries his fiancee. Meanwhile, Butterfly waits for him for three years, cut off from her family, religion and culture by being an American wife. And she is now a mother. When he finally returns she is overjoyed, but he brings with him his new wife. Story originally published in a magazine.
The director, conductor, continuo player and cast are all members of the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme. The story depicts Orestes, son of the doomed Greek king Agamemnon and his treacherous wife Clytemnestra, discovering and recognizing his sister Iphigenia in a moment of high drama many years after the terrible events that have split the family apart.
'The Pirates of Penzance (or the Slave of Duty)' is probably the most humorous of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas, with tuneful melodies and well known songs, Poor Wandering One, I Am The Very Model of a Modern Major General, The Sergeant of Police and Policeman's Chorus.