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Interactive performance to take opera out of the theatre and into Leeds’ community groups


This September, members of community groups in Leeds will have the chance to find out more about opera in special introductory performances to The Coronation of Poppea.

The Coronation of Poppea, which opens at the Leeds Grand Theatre on 4 October before going on tour, is loosely based on the life of the Roman Emperor Nero and his erotic obsession for the beautiful Poppea. The performance will introduce the story, characters and motifs of the opera. Sexual-politics and morality are strong themes throughout Monteverdi’s opera, and groups are encouraged to question the actions of the main characters as well as their own moral views throughout the community performance.

The performances are specifically designed to make opera more open and accessible for groups ahead of trips to live performance and welcomes individuals to discover more about Monteverdi’s music especially those who haven’t experienced opera before.

Created and performed by artists Anthony Haddon and Sylvia Hallett this short, informal production combines drama and live music including the harp, accordion and violin to dramatically recreate everything from the streets of Rome to the streets of Leeds.

Opera North has a range of Community Partners in the Leeds area, as part of a major community engagement programme funded over five years by Paul Hamlyn Foundation. By taking opera out of the theatre and into local community groups Opera North develops closer relationships with the people of Leeds and gives communities the chance experience live opera for the very first time.

An Introduction to The Coronation of Poppea will tour various community venues from Monday 29 September. Opera North’s production of Monteverdi’s The Coronation of Poppea opens at the Leeds Grand Theatre on 4 October and tours to the Lowry Salford Quays, Nottingham Theatre Royal and Newcastle Theatre Royal until 29 November. 

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