Children and young people are central to Opera North’s ambition and purpose. Our Schools work sits at the heart of our Education programme, with activities, projects and events designed specifically for Primary, Secondary and Sixth Form students.

Whistle Stop Opera: Cinderella for Primary Schools

Suitable for KS1-2

The much-loved fairy tale, but not quite as you know it…

Cinderella spends her days scrubbing the floors, dreaming of a better life. The prince spends his looking out of the palace windows, dreaming of the perfect companion. Until fate intervenes, the two meet and the rest is history…

Join us this festive season for a magical whistle stop tour of Cinderella, in this special free film production for primary schools (recommended for KS1 & KS2); it’s the perfect chance to experience the charm of opera whatever your age! The production features a cast of three professional opera singers with piano and violin accompaniment.

Music includes extracts (in English) from several different takes on the fairy tale, including Rossini’s opera La Cenerentola, Massenet’s opera Cendrillon, Pauline Viardot’s operetta Cendrillon and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical Cinderella.

We hope you enjoy the show!

Teaching resources

We would encourage schools to access the accompanying song resource, featuring our very own Cinderella (Marie Claire Breen) as she teaches pupils a short song from the performance which they can join in with. Follow Cinderella’s instructions to make a magic wand to bring with you the performance and why not come dressed as your favourite fairy tale character?

Read Cinderella’s Song Lyrics »

NB – please note, the film and resources will only be available for schools to access up until the end of January 2021 

How to access

If your school would like to access the performance and resources, please contact:

We would love schools to send us photos and videos of pupils as they engage with the resources and performance – just use #WhistleStopOpera and tag @Opera_North on Twitter! Please send us your feedback by completing our online feedback form.

Blended Learning Composition Project for GCSE & A Level Music Students

Suitable for KS4-5 music students

An exciting extended educational project centred on developing music composition skills to enable GCSE & A-Level Music participants to create short music works (free composition) written for a solo instrument or voice and accompaniment. The course will enable personal progression for each individual student and will cover all stages of the composing process, including practical considerations of the available instruments/singers the participants can write for.

Devised and led by composer James Garner and supported by a selection of Opera North orchestral musicians/singers, the course will feature a combination of online/live composition workshops, accompanied by a step-by-step LTSM resource to guide and support a music teacher and participants at every step of the compositional process. This resource will include lesson guides in an instructional video format to help carry participants through the tasks and support the teacher in every session. The resource will also contain a summarising document for teachers, charting the learning objectives and outcomes for each stage of the process.

The project will culminate in a final sharing performance (either live/remote) featuring the students’ new compositions, played through by Opera North musicians/singers.

When: Jan-Mar/Apr 2021 (Online meetings with schools: Nov/Dec 2020)

Where: Leeds | Greater Manchester | Newcastle | Cumbria

Cost: £475+VAT per school

How to book: Contact for more information

Booking deadline: Friday 13 Nov 2020*

*Only a very limited number of school spaces are available; places will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Locations may vary depending on school take-up.


BBC Ten Pieces: Small Orchestra Performances in School

Suitable for KS2-3 students

An engaging and interactive 45 min workshop style in-school performance for KS2-3 pupils, featuring a selection of repertoire from the BBC Ten Pieces, arranged for 13-piece instrumental ensemble, comprised of instrumentalists from the Orchestra of Opera North and presented by animateur Andy Smith

Workshops would provide an inspiring opportunity for students to access and interact with live instrumental music through the works of the great composers from the Baroque period to the 20th Century

Accompanying digital resources focusing on the instruments of the orchestra will also be available to participating schools

Workshops would be developed in line with Covid guidelines for the Performing Arts to ensure the health and safety of musicians and school pupils/teaching staff

When: TBC from Jan 2021

Where: Leeds, Newcastle, Northumberland, County Durham, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Nottingham, Barnsley, Doncaster & York*

Cost: £400+VAT per school

How to book: Contact for more information

*If your school is located outside of these areas, please do contact us to check availability for a performance.

Schools Resource Packs

Schools Resource Packs

A range of resource packs for Schools’ Matinee performances are also available to assist any learning around specific operas or opera in general.

Discounted tickets for school groups

Discounted tickets for school groups

Discounted tickets for school groups are available for Opera North main stage performances (excluding Saturday performances). For further information, please contact

Artsmark Award

Opera North is proud to be working in partnership with schools and settings on their Artsmark Award journey. By supporting Artsmark settings, we’re helping to put the arts at the heart of education, inspiring young people to create, experience and participate in high quality arts and culture.

To find out how Opera North can support your Artsmark journey, contact Claire Armour, Schools Activity Manager at Please note, any project below can be accessed by your school to help support you on your Artsmark journey.

Get in touch

Please get in touch for further information and to book your place on activities.
Phone: 0113 223 3520


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