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La traviata

Autumn 2014

20 September 2014 - 27 March 2015

Nationwide

Touring 5 theatres

La traviata

Synopsis

Giuseppe Verdi (1853)

New production
Violetta is a courtesan who is enjoying the Parisian high-life when, to her surprise, she falls in love.  But she cannot escape the consequences of her past life, and circumstances conspire to force her to sacrifice what may be her only chance of real love.

Asked some years after its premiere which of his operas he liked best, Verdi replied ‘Speaking as a professional, Rigoletto; as an amateur La traviata’.  He poured some of his most heartfelt music into this intimate story of family tensions and blighted love, and the result is one of opera’s most profoundly moving masterpieces.  

Director Alessandro Talevi and designer Madeleine Boyd (The Turn of the Screw, Don Giovanni) set Opera North’s first new production of La traviata for 15 years in Belle Époque Paris.  Two South Korean artists with burgeoning international careers, the soprano Hye-Youn Lee and the tenor Ji-Min Park, are Violetta and Alfredo; and the young Italian conductor Gianluca Marcianò makes his Opera North debut.

Free pre-show talks
Sat 27 September, Fri 3 & 17 October, Tue 28 October, Sat 1 November.
​Talks by Opera North Chorus member Sarah Estill. Begins 1 hour before the performance. Limited capacity, book early on 0844 848 2700.

Sung in Italian with English titles
Performance lasts 2 hours 45 minutes

Listen below to hear the Chorus and Orchestra of Opera North with Hye Youn Lee as Violetta and Ji-Min Park as Alfredo perform Brindisi from La traviata

Follow Opera North on Tumblr for the latest news from behind the scenes.

Next Performances
Wed 26th Nov
Fri 28th Nov
Sat 31st Jan
Fri 6th Feb
There are a total of 15 upcoming performances for this production
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The Coronation of Poppea

Autumn 2014

4 Oct - 29 November 2014

Nationwide

Touring 4 theatres

The Coronation of Poppea

Synopsis

Claudio Monteverdi (1643)

New production

Based loosely on actual events in 1st-century AD Rome, The Coronation of Poppea charts the consuming erotic obsession of the Emperor Nero for the beautiful Poppea Sabina.  Ruthlessly sweeping aside anyone who stands in the way of their union – including Nero’s wife Octavia and the poet and philosopher Seneca – Nero and Poppea triumph over all their opponents and rejoice in one of the most sexually-charged love duets ever written.

The moral ambivalence of one of opera’s earliest masterpieces ensures that it remains to this day one of the most shocking and compelling.  Tim Albery, who directed a ravishing production of Handel’s Giulio Cesare for Opera North in 2012, has prepared a new performing version of a dramma musicale about which almost everything is disputed, including its authorship. 

A cast of superb singer-actors is led by the American mezzo soprano Sandra Piques Eddy (Poppea) and the British counter-tenor James Laing (Nerone).  The conductor is Laurence Cummings, one of Britain’s most exciting and versatile exponents of historically-informed performance.   

Free pre-show talks
Sat 11 October, Thu 30 October. Talks by Assistant Director Emma Black and Opera North Editor Stuart Leeks. Begins 1 hour before the performance. Limited capacity, book early on 0844 848 2700.

Sung in English
Performance lasts 2 hours 45 minutes

Production supported by Friends of Opera North

We have put together a playlist of iconic love duets across all musical genres as inspired by the final duet of The Coronation of Poppea. 

Next Performances
Sat 29th Nov
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The Bartered Bride

Autumn 2014

18 Oct - 27 November 2014

Nationwide

Touring 4 theatres

The Bartered Bride

Synopsis

Bedřich Smetana (1866)

Mařenka and Jeník are in love, but her father wants her to marry the son of the wealthiest man in town.  In the end, youth and cunning outsmart age and power, and the constraints of rural life are thrown off for a while when the circus comes to town.

Smetana is best known for his symphonic poem Ma Vlast (My Country).  His music for The Bartered Bride abounds with freshness and vitality, its energy generated by bold contrasts of mood and atmosphere, the exuberance of its folk-like rhythms and the catchiness of its tunes. 

Daniel Slater’s colourful production has been enthusiastically received by both audiences and critics:

If you want to introduce someone to the delights of opera, this is the one to take them to.’  Sunday Telegraph, 1998

Daniel Slater’s updating of Smetana’s sentimental comedy first appeared in 1998 and is one for all the family, with its all-dancing verve and second-half circus interlude, which gets the evening’s biggest cheer.’  The Times, 2004

Audio Described Performance 
​Wed 29 October. Audio Description by Vocaleyes including a touch tour of the set and cosumes at 5.45pm. Limited capacity, to book for audio description and touch tour call 0113 22 33 590. Tickets £13.50 Essential companion free. 

Sung in English
Performance lasts 2 hours 45 minutes

Resources for schools 
If you attended our schools performance or would like information on using The Bartered Bride in the classroom, download our schools Resource Pack and Lesson Plans here.  

Follow Opera North's board The Bartered Bride on Pinterest.
Next Performances
Tue 25th Nov
Thu 27th Nov
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Forced Entertainment: That Night Follows Day

Autumn 2014

23 November 2014

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Forced Entertainment: That Night Follows Day

Cropped_that_night_follows_day_428 Synopsis

That Night Follows Day is a comical and poignant text by Tim Etchells, the Artistic Director of internationally renowned theatre company Forced Entertainment.

Written for an adult audience with performers aged 8 to 14, the work explores the ways in which adults’ words and actions shape and influence young people’s experience. Addressing the audience directly, a chorus of children explores and interrogates the range of advice, facts, truisms, white lies and excuses they hear from their elders.

In partnership with Compass Festival and Opera North, Forced Entertainment will create a rehearsed reading of the work. Age recommendation 16 +. Although the piece is performed by children it is for an adult audience as the text contains strong language.

‘One of Britain’s greatest theatre companies’ The Guardian

Part of Compass Festival 2014, taking all over Leeds City Centre between 13 - 23 November.

Please note the time indicated is the actual start of the performance. Doors to the event will open approximately 15 minutes before.

 
Next Performances
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Behind the Curtain: Photography Exhibition

Autumn 2014

26 November 2014

Leeds

White Cloth Gallery

Behind the Curtain: Photography Exhibition

Cropped_behind_the_curtain_02_credit_tom_arber_428px Synopsis

26th November 2014 - 1st February 2015 

This winter, White Cloth Gallery in Leeds is hosting Behind the Curtain, an exhibition of new photography exposing the hidden world behind-the-scenes Opera North. 

Yorkshire-based photographer Tom Arber spent a week in residence with Opera North in September 2014, as the company prepared for a new production of Verdi’s La traviata.

Granted full backstage access for the project, Tom’s images lovingly detail the final stage rehearsals in the run up to opening night, giving a glimpse of rarely seen moments on and off stage, in dressing rooms and backstage corridors, from principal opera singers to costume dressers and stage technicians.

White Cloth Gallery
24-26 Aire Street, Leeds, LS1 4HT
Opening hours: Mon-Tue: 12-9pm, Wed-Sat: 12-11pm

Free entrance

For further information, phone 0113 218 1923 or email info@whiteclothgallery.com

Next Performances
Wed 26th Nov
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Giorgos Xylouris and Jim White

Autumn 2014

28 November 2014

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Giorgos Xylouris and Jim White

Synopsis

With support

Xylouris White is the collaboration between two masters of contemporary music: Jim White, founder of the internationally acclaimed trio Dirty Three, and Giorgos Xylouris (aka Psarogiorgis) the master lutenist who has been described as the future of Cretan music.

‘With his commanding stage presence, creative approach and curly hair, Xylouris is the Bob Dylan of Greek music’ Neoskosmos.com on Giorgos Xylouris

Xylouris White makes a compelling new blend of melody and rhythm - an exhilarating experience to watch. Having first played together in Melbourne, the duo has been on a wonderful journey across three continents. Although these new experiences have added many riches, neither has lost touch with the best of their diverse traditions.

‘ever-astounding’ Pitchfork on Jim White

The first album by Xylouris White will be released this Autumn.

Please note the time indicated is the actual start of the performance. Doors to the event will open approximately 15 minutes before.

Simply buy an equivalent number of tickets for two or more shows displaying the Save symbol and you will receive 20% off your tickets. Currently not available online. To book please call 0844 848 2727, Monday – Saturday from 10am – 6pm.

 
Next Performances
Fri 28th Nov
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Music: Scaling the Heights

Autumn 2014

4th - 6 December 2014

Nationwide

Touring 2 theatres

Music: Scaling the Heights

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Brahms’s D major Concerto is one of the peaks of the violin repertoire.  The rugged grandeur of the massive first movement gives way to the melting lyricism of the second, whilst the finale is flavoured with vigorous Hungarian folk rhythms, a tribute to the man for whom the work was written, the Hungarian virtuoso Joseph Joachim.  Following in Joachim’s footsteps this evening is one of the most compelling young violinists on the concert platform today, Jack Liebeck.  The concert is completed by two masterworks of French orchestral tone painting – La Valse, Ravel’s tribute to the waltz, its touches of parody shot through with a surprising romanticism, and Debussy’s impressionistic evocation of the sea, La Mer.

Brahms | Violin Concerto

Debussy | La Mer

Ravel La Valse

Richard Farnes | Conductor

Jack Liebeck | Violin

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 
Next Performances
Thu 4th Dec
Sat 6th Dec
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Vocal Harmony: Interactive Family Performance

Autumn 2014

6 December 2014

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Vocal Harmony: Interactive Family Performance

Cropped_vocal_harmony_428 Synopsis

Following the storming sell-out success of the Family Bluegrass and West African Music Interactive Performance, Vocal Harmony is our latest concert.

The morning not only features a performance from a professional a cappella vocal harmony group, the audience will also be given a chance to join in and sing along in a fun, relaxes environment.

‘A brilliant morning of music, dance and play… Opera North really went out of the way to make the event family friendly’ Yorkshire Tots

This morning concert is the ideal way to introduce young children to music, singing and professional performance.

Suitable for children of all ages and their parents/carers.

All children should be accompanied by an adult and all adults should be accompanied by a child!

‘I loved it’ Participant aged 5​

Please note the time indicated is the actual start of the performance. Doors to the event will open approximately 15 minutes before.

 
Next Performances
Sat 6th Dec
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Music: A Joyous Christmas

Autumn 2014

11 December 2014

Dewsbury

Dewsbury Town Hall

Music: A Joyous Christmas

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

The annual Dewsbury Christmas concert has become a popular fixture in the calendar in recent years, and with good reason: this special time of year has inspired many of the greatest composers to write some of their finest music.  This year, as well as enjoying music by Bach and Mendelssohn, you’ll bask in the glow of some exquisite arrangements of Christmas carols by the English composer John Rutter, whose own music is often strongly associated with the festive period.  You’ll also have the opportunity to add your voice to the Chorus of Opera North in favourite carols, ensuring that your Christmas season gets off to a truly joyous start.

Concert includes:

J. S. Bach | Christmas Oratorio Part I

Hess | Christmas Overture

Mendelssohn | Christus

Shaw | How Far is it to Bethlehem

arr. Rutter | The Twelve Days of Christmas | Shepherd’s Pipe Carol

Once in Royal David’s City
O Little Town of Bethlehem

Anthony Kraus | Conductor          

Chorus of Opera North

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 
Next Performances
Thu 11th Dec
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Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Chloë Hanslip & Danny Driver: Visions of Russia

Synopsis

Following on from Natalie Clein’s sell out solo recital, Visions of Russia is the next in the series of special concerts taking place within projected ‘rooms’ on-stage at the Howard Assembly Room. Here, the ‘radiantly sympathetic’ (Julian Haylock, Sinfinimusic) violinist Chloë Hanslip is joined by internationally renowned pianist Danny Driver.

“An outstanding compelling partnership” Gramophone Magazine

The pair focus on two giants of Russian music - Sergei Rachmaninov and Sergei Prokofiev, whose music spans the turn of the 20th Century. This intensely emotional programme includes Prokofiev’s austere and thrilling Sonata op 80, and sections of Rachmaninov’s supremely expressive Études Tableaux op. 39.

Please note the time indicated is the actual start of the performance. Doors to the event will open approximately 15 minutes before.

Simply buy an equivalent number of tickets for two or more shows displaying the Save symbol and you will receive 20% off your tickets. Currently not available online. To book please call 0844 848 2727, Monday – Saturday from 10am – 6pm.

 
Next Performances
Fri 12th Dec
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Bulgarian Voices Angelite

Autumn 2014

13 December 2014

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Bulgarian Voices Angelite

Synopsis

Voices

This wonderful group of 20 strong singers is a true phenomenon.  The all-female ensemble was formed from the ashes of the Bulgarian State Television Choir, and nominated for a Grammy in 1999.

Their style of singing and ornamentation is incredibly distinctive and inspired by centuries of tradition.  Blending classical and folk music in a programme for Christmas time, the choir’s sound is both mystical and muscular as “throaty sounds course above low drone notes and wide-open harmonies, the ensemble’s performances provide one of the most unique and compelling experiences in music”. (LA Times)

“Angelite is an amazing example of vocal virtuosity” The Scotsman

Please note the time indicated is the actual start of the performance. Doors to the event will open approximately 15 minutes before.

 
Next Performances
Sat 13th Dec
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Leeds

Leeds Town Hall

Music: Inspiration concert - Jesus, You are Him

Cropped_inspiration_xmas_428 Synopsis

A gospel flavoured concert from your epic Inspiration.

Inspiration and the Orchestra of Opera North present: Jesus, You Are Him

The massed voices of Inspiration and The Orchestra of Opera North will once again thrill you with their extremely popular Christmas extravaganza.

This year we are exploring the exciting world of gospel, with brand new arrangements of familiar Christmas works together with some new songs, both home grown and also from some of the world's greatest gospel arrangers.

Next Performances
Sun 14th Dec
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Handel's Messiah

Winter 2014

16th - 17 December 2014

Huddersfield

Huddersfield Town Hall

Handel's Messiah

Cropped_huddersfield_choral_society_428px Synopsis

The Orchestra of Opera North are joined by Huddersfield Choral Society in Handel's Messiah at Huddersfield Town Hall for two performances. 

Soloists
Elizabeth Llewellyn
Jennifer Johnston
Stuart Jackson
Neal Davies

Conductor | David Angus

Box office: 01484 221900

Next Performances
Tue 16th Dec
Wed 17th Dec
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Tallis Scholars

Autumn 2014

18 December 2014

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Tallis Scholars

Synopsis

Voices 

The Tallis Scholars make a welcome return to the Howard Assembly Room after a four year absence. Leading exponents of early sacred music for over 40 years, this superb a cappella ensemble, founded and conducted by Peter Phillips, continues to delight with their beautifully pure tone and exquisite harmonies.

Performing an inspired programme of English Renaissance music focusing on composer William Byrd, the ensemble performs a festive and moving concert for the Christmas period.

'...the sound coming from the Tallis Scholars almost surpassed the humanly possible...' - The Telegraph

Please note the time listed on your ticket/webpage is the start time for the performance. Doors open approximately 30 minutes beforehand. Where there is a support act, this will also be stated on the website/ticket. We recommend arriving at least 15 minutes before show time as latecomers will only be admitted during a suitable break in the performance.

 
Next Performances
Thu 18th Dec
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Christmas at Twilight

Autumn 2014

19 December 2014

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Christmas at Twilight

Cropped_christmas_twighlight_428 Synopsis

Voices

Take a break from gift wrapping and non-stop Slade, for an early evening injection of Christmas gladness and good cheer. Celebrating the spirit of midwinter festivities through the centuries, exceptional cellist Matthew Sharp, a cappella vocal trio Voice, and a group of musicians draw together Medieval harmonies, festive folk songs and carols for a unique Christmas concert.

‘An extraordinary cellist – virtuosic, charismatic, brimming with verve and poetry’ The Times on Matthew Sharp

In a holly-decked, candle-lit Howard Assembly Room, the spirits of Christmas past and present are invoked, through a wonderful array of music – from Tchaikovsky to Tavener - for the season.

Please note the time indicated is the actual start of the performance. Doors to the event will open approximately 15 minutes before.

 
Next Performances
Fri 19th Dec
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Music: The Nutcracker & The Snowman

Autumn 2014

21 December 2014

Leeds

Leeds Town Hall

Music: The Nutcracker & The Snowman

Cropped_the-snowman Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Delight your family this Christmas with a double-bill of classic musical stories for children accompanied by a live orchestra.

With the enchanted animated film The Snowman shown on a big screen, orchestral forces inject tingle-down-the-spine magic into Walking in the Air - the soundtrack to every child's Christmas.

The perfect way to begin the exciting build-up to Christmas Day.

Tim Lihoreau | narrator
Neil Thomson | conductor

Next Performances
Sun 21st Dec
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Music: Viennese Whirl

Autumn 2014

28th - 30 December 2014

Nationwide

Touring 3 theatres

Music: Viennese Whirl

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Be swept off your feet and into the New Year by this afternoon of Viennese classics.  One of the season’s highlights for many, do book early as this ever-popular concert regularly sells out.

Concert includes:

Johann Strauss IIDie Fledermaus Overture

Kreisler | Viennese Rhapsody

Offenbach | Orpheus in the Underworld Overture

Josef Strauss | Jockey Polka

Johann & Josef Strauss | Pizzicato Polka

Richard Strauss | Der Rosenkavalier Waltzes

Lehár | The Land of Smiles: Dein ist mein ganzes Herz

J0hann Strauss II | On the Beautiful Blue Danube

Tobias Ringborg | Conductor/Violin

Michael Weinius | Tenor/Conductor

Mark Forrest | Presenter

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 
Next Performances
Sun 28th Dec
Mon 29th Dec
Tue 30th Dec
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Music: From Prague to the Rhine

Winter 2015

23 January 2015

Huddersfield

Huddersfield Town Hall

Music: From Prague to the Rhine

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Mozart had a special relationship with the city of Prague – his opera The Marriage of Figaro was a triumph there and led to the commission for Don Giovanni.  His Symphony No.38 was premièred in the city in January 1787 – hence its nickname.  It’s a work full of operatic touches – the drama of Don Giovanni rubbing shoulders with the high spirits and nobility of The Magic Flute.  Schumann’s symphonies were regarded by the more discerning of his contemporaries as being the most original and important after Beethoven’s.  The ‘Rhenish’ Symphony is perhaps the most popular of the four, and its opening movement rides an adrenalin surge of energy.  Between these two masterly symphonies comes Prokofiev’s Second Piano Concerto, dramatic and fiendishly difficult for the soloist.  Expect fireworks this evening from the Serbian pianist Aleksander Madzar.

Mozart | Symphony no.38, K504 ‘Prague’

Prokofiev | Piano Concerto no. 2

Schumann | Symphony No.3 in EÙ ‘Rhenish’

Aleksander Markovic | Conductor

Aleksander Madzar | Piano

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 
Next Performances
Fri 23rd Jan
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The Marriage of Figaro

Winter 2015

24 Jan - 28 March 2015

Nationwide

Touring 5 theatres

The Marriage of Figaro

Cropped_figaro_428 Synopsis

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1786)

New production

It’s Figaro’s wedding day, and, to add to the usual worries, Figaro learns that his master, the Count, is out to bed his bride-to-be Susanna.  The Countess is heartbroken by her husband’s faithlessness – but she is the object of the adolescent desires of the page, Cherubino.  And Figaro is in trouble with the housekeeper, Marcellina, who has lent him money on the promise that, if he can’t repay her, he’ll have to marry her …

The Marriage of Figaro is aptly subtitled ‘The Follies of a Day’.  Mozart’s music bubbles along with comedic high spirits, but it plumbs the depths of emotion, too, expressing the joy and pain of love and the agony and ecstasy of desire, until all is resolved in a spirit of forgiveness.

With recent work for Opera North including a deliciously funny Ruddigore and a heart-rending Carousel, director Jo Davies is perfectly placed to hold the effervescent comedy and the serious heart of Mozart’s sublime masterpiece in ideal balance.     

Free Inside Opera 
Fri 30 January from 5.45-6.30pm, Howard Assembly Room
Members of the cast and creative team offer an exclusive insight into the production. Limited capacity, book early on 0844 848 2700.

Free pre-show talks 
Thurs 5, Weds 11, Tue 17, Sat 21 & Fri 27 February and Thurs 5, Sat 7, Tue 10, Sat 14, Thurs 26 & Sat 28 March from 6.00-6.30pm. Limited capacity, book early on 0844 848 2700.

Listen below to hear highlights from The Marriage of Figaro via Spotify: 

Sung in English
Performance lasts approximately 3 hours

Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Libretto by Lorenzo da Ponte
English version by Jeremy Sams
​Performed by arrangement with Josef Weinberger Limited

Next Performances
Sat 24th Jan
Fri 30th Jan
Thu 5th Feb
Wed 11th Feb
There are a total of 15 upcoming performances for this production
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Music: Festive Grandeur

Winter 2015

7 February 2015

Dewsbury

Dewsbury Town Hall

Music: Festive Grandeur

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Dmitri Shostakovich may be best known for his intensely serious symphonies and string quartets, but there was a lighter, more carefree side to his musical personality, and it is given free rein in the predominantly cheerful Second Piano Concerto. The Estonian composer Arvo Pärt has, for the past few years, been the most frequently performed contemporary composer in the world, a fact which comes as no surprise when you hear a piece as beautiful as his Fratres.  This evening’s concert closes with Mozart’s last symphony, the ‘Jupiter’.  The composer could hardly have known, when he put pen to manuscript paper in the summer of 1788, that this would be his last essay in the form, but it’s hard to imagine a more fitting climax to his symphonic career than this grand and festive work.

Brahms | Tragic Overture                        

Shostakovich | Piano Concerto no.2  

Pärt Fratres  

Mozart | Symphony No.41, K551 ‘Jupiter’

Alexandre Bloch | Conductor

Ian Buckle | Piano

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 
Next Performances
Sat 7th Feb
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La vida breve

Winter 2015

18 Feb - 24 March 2015

Nationwide

Touring 4 theatres

La vida breve

Cropped_la_vida_breve_428 Synopsis

This production is presented as part of a double-bill alongside Gianni Schicchi.

Manuel de Falla (1913)

From the composer of the orchestral showpiece Nights in the Gardens of Spain and the popular ballet The Three-Cornered Hat comes this irresistibly exuberant opera that sets violently passionate emotions amid the colourful sights and sounds of Granada.

La vida breve is an all or nothing tragedy of a woman who loves too much a worthless man who strings her along, knowing all the while that he is to marry another girl.   The atmosphere is heavy with Spanish fatalism, heightened by the influence of Andalusian folk song, lightened by Spanish dance rhythms, and the action is ferociously intense. 

Christopher Alden’s production was one of the highlights of Opera North’s groundbreaking, award-winning Eight Little Greats season in 2004, and was extravagantly praised by Germaine Greer on BBC2’s Newsnight Review:

‘It’s a staggering work and it was staggeringly presented and performed.  If you see nothing else this year, and you give a damn, see La vida breve.  Go to Salford, Nottingham, go wherever you can and see it.’  

Free pre-show talks 
Fri 20, Weds 25 & Sat 28 February and Tue 3, Thurs 12 & Tue 24 March from 6.00-6.30pm. Limited capacity, book early on 0844 848 2700.

Listen below to hear highlights from La vida breve through Spotify: 

Sung in Spanish with English titles
Performance lasts approximately 1 hour 15 minutes

Next Performances
Wed 18th Feb
Fri 20th Feb
Wed 25th Feb
Sat 28th Feb
There are a total of 7 upcoming performances for this production
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Gianni Schicchi

Winter 2015

18 Feb - 24 March 2015

Nationwide

Touring 4 theatres

Gianni Schicchi

Cropped_gianni_schicchi_428 Synopsis

This production is presented in a double-bill alongside La vida breve.

Giacomo Puccini (1918)

New production

After the dark, suicidal angst of La vida breve, Gianni Schicchi is the perfect companion piece – a satyr play played out around the death-bed of a rich man.  The scheming relatives who vie for a chunk of his fortune are all too recognizable types, revealing the greed and avarice which lies just below the thin veneer of their family loyalties.

Puccini’s only outright comedy is based on an episode in Dante’s Inferno, and Christopher Alden’s new production locates the action in the early Renaissance, at a time when medieval cobwebs were blown away by the fresh air of radical new thinking and creative innovation.  The production also nods slyly in the direction of the timeless themes which Puccini exploits to brilliantly farcical effect – after all, those scheming relatives may bear an uncanny resemblance to our own family members!

With its vivid characterization and the spontaneity of its musical invention, Gianni Schicchi is a comic masterpiece in miniature, and features one of Puccini’s best-loved arias, ‘O mio babbino caro’.

Free pre-show talks 
Fri 20, Weds 25 & Sat 28 February and Tue 3, Thurs 12 & Tue 24 March from 6.00-6.30pm. Limited capacity, book early on 0844 848 2700.

Listen below to hear highlights from Gianni Schicci through Spotify: 

Sung in Italian with English titles
Performance lasts approximately 1 hour

Next Performances
Wed 18th Feb
Fri 20th Feb
Wed 25th Feb
Sat 28th Feb
There are a total of 7 upcoming performances for this production
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John Smith

Autumn 2014

21 February 2015

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

John Smith

Synopsis

Sat 27 November 2014 gig postponed and rescheduled to Sat 21 February 2015

November date postponed by the artist due the extension of his North American tour. We are pleased to have secured a new date of Sat 21 February 2015 at 7.45pm. If you have tickets for the original Sat 27 November date, they have been automatically transferred to the new date.

For existing ticket holders (who bought their tickets prior to Tue 7 October 2014)

If you would like to come on the new date: no action is required – just come with your current ticket/s on Sat 21 February instead.

If you would like a refund you must send back your tickets by Mon 15 December 2014: please send your ticket/s back to the Box Office and they will arrange your refund. If you paid in cash, by cheque or Theatre tokens, your refund will be issued as a cheque. This will take 2-3 weeks.

If you have any queries, please contact the Box Office:

Leeds Grand Theatre Box Office:
Open 10.00am to 8pm Monday to Saturday
46 New Briggate, Leeds LS1 6NU
0844 848 2727 (calls charged at local rate) *on performance nights, the Box Office will be busier from 6-7.30pm.
Email: boxoffice@leedsgrandtheatre.com

We share your disappointment that this event has had to be rescheduled and we hope we can welcome you back to the Howard Assembly Room soon.

Synopsis

John Smith has had an incredible year (culminating in a sell out show at Union Chapel in London) touring his most recent album Great Lakes. He is a dazzling and inventive guitarist and possessor of an unforgettable honeyed gravel growl of a voice that belies his age.

John Smith is a firm favourite at the Howard Assembly Room having first performed in the venue supporting Iron and Wine in 2010.

With support: details tbc

“He possesses a common name but a rare talent”  The Independent

“His performance was an object lesson in how taste and imagination always outweigh mere musical virtuosity…unexpected and daring” - The Sunday Times

Please note the time listed on your ticket/webpage is the start time for the performance. Doors open approximately 30 minutes beforehand. Where there is a support act, this will also be stated on the website/ticket. We recommend arriving at least 15 minutes before show time as latecomers will only be admitted during a suitable break in the performance.

 
Next Performances
Sat 21st Feb
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Ólafur Arnalds

Winter 2015

27 February 2015

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Ólafur Arnalds

Cropped_olafur_arnalds_main Synopsis

Strand: Soundings

With support

Over the years, Icelandic multi-instrumentalist and producer Ólafur Arnalds has gained a loyal following for his unique blend of lush strings and piano, juxtaposed with edgier loops and beats. His most recent album Now I am Winter, evokes the atmospheres of winter nights and crisp snowy hills. It weaves its spell slowly, over its course.

'an exemplary suite of Icelandic music, blending American minimalist techniques with European sensibilities' The Independent

Moving between ambient electronica to pop, his tracks have been widely featured in film and TV – fans of The Hunger Games will recognise Ólafur’s song Allt Varð Hljótt, a track he penned for the film’s score and soundtrack.

Next Performances
Fri 27th Feb
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Music: Classic FM at the Movies

Winter 2015

1 March 2015

Huddersfield

Huddersfield Town Hall

Music: Classic FM at the Movies

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Some of the best-loved – and some of the best – orchestral music of the 20th and 21st centuries has been composed for the silver screen.  This season’s Classic FM at the Movies programme pays tributes to such masters of the genre as Danny Elfman and Howard Shore, as well as celebrating the enormous contribution that the great classical composers have made to so many of our favourite films.  This concert is the perfect way to share with all the family the power and the glory of wonderful orchestral music played live – so do book soon for what is bound to be one of the most popular dates in the season!

Concert includes:

Richard Strauss | Also Sprach Zarathustra [2001: A Space Odyssey]

Wagner | Die Walküre: Ride of the Valkyries [Apocalypse Now]

Danny Elfman | Batman: Suite

Mahler | Symphony no.5: Adagietto [Death in Venice, Lorenzo’s Oil]

Howard Shore | The Lord of the Rings: Suite

Dukas | The Sorcerer’s Apprentice [Fantasia]

Oliver von Dohnányi | Conductor

Nick Bailey | Presenter

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 

Next Performances
Sun 1st Mar
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Music: Invitation to the Dance

Winter 2015

11th - 16 April 2015

Nationwide

Touring 2 theatres

Music: Invitation to the Dance

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Three works with strong associations with dance dominate this evening’s concert.  Gershwin’s musical love letter to Paris, written in 1928, was not originally intended to be danced, but it is now indelibly linked with images of Leslie Caron and Gene Kelly dancing against the backdrop of the City of Romance in the 1951 film An American in Paris.  Stravinsky’s Firebird took a journey in the opposite direction, from ballet score to orchestral suite.  Premièred in 1910 by the Ballets Russes, the ballet was an immediate sensation with audiences and critics, and the 1919 orchestral suite heard here demonstrates Stravinsky’s total mastery of orchestral colour.  In his Mother Goose suite, Ravel weaves together several French fairy tales, including Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast and Tom Thumb, to make music that is a delight for adults and children alike.

Gershwin | An American in Paris

Shostakovich | Piano Concerto No.1

Ravel Mother Goose (Complete)

Stravinsky | The Firebird (1919)

Kees Bakels | Conductor

Frederico Colli | Piano

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 

Next Performances
Sat 11th Apr
Thu 16th Apr
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Swanhunter

Spring 2015

16th - 18 April 2015

Leeds

Howard Assembly Room

Swanhunter

Cropped_swanhunter_428 Synopsis

An Opera North / The Wrong Crowd co-production | Composed by Jonathan Dove using a libretto written by Alasdair Middleton

Against his mother’s wishes, Lemminkäinen travels to the icy north in search of a bride. There, impossible tasks await him: he must hunt the Devil’s elk, ride the Devil’s horse, and shoot a swan. But unseen danger lies in wait for him on Death’s river...

Based on a tale from the Finnish folk epic The Kalevala, Swanhunter is a magical chamber opera written by the composer and librettist of Opera North’s hugely successful The Adventures of Pinocchio. Scored for six singers accompanied by six instrumentalists, Swanhunter is a celebration of the power of song, designed specifically for a family audience – for adults just as much as for children.

Opera North gave the world premiere of Swanhunter in the Howard Assembly Room in Leeds in 2009. For this brand new production, Opera North collaborates for the first time with the acclaimed theatre company The Wrong Crowd to create an inventive fusion of opera, puppetry and live action.

Suitable for ages 7+ | Lasts approximately 1 hour 10mins (no interval) | Sung in English

 

Interactive pre-show talk | Free to ticket holders
Saturday 18 April, 12.15pm and 5.15pm
Meet the puppets and discover the secrets, myths and magic behind the beautiful creation of this exciting tale with members of the cast and creative team. Tickets must be booked in advance.
Book pre-show talk Sat 18 April 12.15 - 1.00pm
Book pre-show talk Sat 18 April 5.15 - 6.00pm

Swanhunter is supported by the Opera North Future Fund and J Paul Getty Jnr Charitable Trust.

Licensed by arrangement with Edition Peters

Next Performances
Thu 16th Apr
Fri 17th Apr
Sat 18th Apr
Sat 18th Apr
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Music: Popular Classics for all the Family

Winter 2015

18th - 19 April 2015

Nationwide

Touring 2 theatres

Music: Popular Classics for all the Family

Synopsis

Orchestra of Opera North

Join us for an afternoon of popular classics in the intimate surroundings of Dewsbury Town Hall.  Tchaikovsky’s music for the ballet The Nutcracker and Prokofiev’s musical tale Peter and the Wolf have inspired a love of classical music in generation after generation of children, and such is the enduring quality of these scores that they are also enjoyed and enjoyed again by all those – young and old – who know and love them well.  Peter and the Wolf will be followed this afternoon by Wolf Tracks, or The Wolf and Peter, a delightful sequel to Prokofiev’s original by the French composer Jean-Pascal Beintus, and the concert is presented and narrated by Huddersfield-born BBC Radio Leeds personality Liz Green.

Tchaikovsky | Nutcracker (excerpts)

Prokofiev | Peter and the Wolf

Jean-Pascal Beintus | Wolf Tracks

Justin Doyle | Conductor  

Liz Green | Narrator and Presenter

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 

Next Performances
Sat 18th Apr
Sun 19th Apr
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Carousel

Spring 2015

13 May - 6 June 2015

Nationwide

Touring 3 theatres

Carousel

Cropped_carousel_428 Synopsis

Richard Rodgers & Oscar Hammerstein II 1945

Carousel is a story of love, loss and the possibility of redemption. Fairground barker Billy Bigelow is quick to anger, but he is loved by a woman, Julie Jordan, who keeps faith with him despite his flaws. It is also a vivid portrait of a society: a fishing community in New England ready to celebrate the joys of living as well as to face its hardships square on.

Asked if he had ever been tempted to write an opera, Richard Rodgers replied that he had, but that Carousel was the closest that he ever came to doing so. The score is studded with classic numbers, including ‘If I Loved You’, ‘June is Bustin’ Out All Over’, ‘Soliloquy’ and, of course, ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’. Jo Davies’s vibrant production, highly praised when it was first seen in Leeds, Salford and London in 2012, is moving and uplifting in equal measure.

‘Opera North has a fine record of presenting Broadway classics, and this new production does a rich piece of musical theatre great honour.’ Daily Telegraph

Sung in English
Performance lasts approximately 3 hours

A co-production with the Théâtre du Châtelet, Paris

Next Performances
Wed 13th May
Thu 14th May
Thu 14th May
Fri 15th May
There are a total of 25 upcoming performances for this production
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Music: Invitation to Dream

Spring 2015

22 May 2015

Huddersfield

Huddersfield Town Hall

Music: Invitation to Dream

Synopsis

BBC Philharmonic

Brahms struggled mightily to compose his First Symphony, so weighed down was he by the expectation that he was Beethoven’s natural successor. His Second Symphony came much more quickly and is a far more relaxed work than the heroic First. Brahms jokingly wrote to his publisher that the Second Symphony ‘is so melancholy that you’ll be unable to bear it’, but it is a joke that contains a germ of truth, for although this is a predominantly warm and lyrical work, it is shot through with moments of agitation and melancholy before reaching its triumphant conclusion. The prodigiously talented Guy Johnston makes a welcome return to the Kirklees Season for the first time in four years in one of the great Romantic cello concertos, and the concert opens with a perennial favourite, Tchaikovsky’s lovely Serenade for Strings.

Tchaikovsky | Serenade for Strings

Saint-Saëns | Cello Concerto No.1

Brahms | Symphony No.2 in D

Andrew Gourlay | Conductor

Guy Johnston | Cello

Part of the Kirklees Concert Season 2014/15
 

Next Performances
Fri 22nd May
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The Flying Dutchman

Summer 2015

27 Jun - 11 July 2015

Nationwide

Touring 5 theatres

The Flying Dutchman

Cropped_dutchman_428 Synopsis

Richard Wagner 1843

Having performed all four instalments of the Ring cycle in successive years, Opera North continues its Wagnerian voyage with the work that the composer himself regarded as the true beginning of his career as a musical dramatist.

Perhaps one reason for this assessment is that the myth of the Dutchman, doomed to wander the seas eternally unless he finds redemption through a woman’s faithful love, treats of themes that were to recur throughout the rest of Wagner’s career. From this material, he constructed a thrillingly taut music drama that grips from the first, storm-tossed notes of the famous overture, to the work’s resplendent final moments of transfiguration.

Like Opera North’s highly acclaimed Ring, The Flying Dutchman will be presented in a concert staging by Peter Mumford, and conducted by the Company’s Music Director Richard Farnes. The principal singers all made their mark in the Opera North Ring: Béla Perencz (Wotan) and Alwyn Mellor (Sieglinde) in Die Walküre, and Mats Almgren (Fafner) and Mati Turi (title role) in Siegfried.

Sung in German with English titles
Performance lasts approximately 2 hours 30 minutes with no interval

Financially supported by the Opera North Future Fund

Next Performances
Sat 27th Jun
Tue 30th Jun
Fri 3rd Jul
Sun 5th Jul
There are a total of 6 upcoming performances for this production
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