Opera North today announces seven productions for Autumn 2023 and Winter 2024, including its first full sustainable season of three operas, and the world premiere of a new opera adapted from the work of Henry Purcell.

Explore 2023–2024


28 SEP – 18 NOV 2023

At multiple venues

More Info & Book

Masque of Might

6 OCT – 16 NOV 2023

At multiple venues

More Info & Book

La rondine

20 OCT – 17 NOV 2023

At multiple venues

More Info & Book

Albert Herring

12 JAN – 2 MAR 2024

Howard Assembly Room

More Info & Book

Così fan tutte

2 FEB – 6 APR 2024

At multiple venues

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Cavalleria rusticana / Aleko

15 FEB – 22 MAR 2024

At multiple venues

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Autumn 2023: The Green Season

Underlining its commitment to sustainability, Autumn sees Opera North performing its first full sustainable season in an ambitious and progressive programme guided by the Theatre Green Book. All three operas will share scenic elements to create interlinked yet distinctive designs, enabling Opera North to reduce its use of materials, and all sets, props and costumes will be sourced from previous productions or purchased second-hand. More matinee performances have also been introduced in order to make it easier for audiences to travel on public transport.

Opening the season in September will be a new production of Verdi’s Falstaff, directed by Olivia Fuchs and conducted by Music Director Garry Walker with Henry Waddington in the title role.

The world premiere of a new piece created by Sir David Pountney follows. Masque of Might recycles music by one of the greatest English theatre composers, Henry Purcell, and reimagines the 17th-century form of the masque to create a biting yet humorous contemporary satire, billed as an ‘eco-entertainment’. Baroque specialist Harry Bicket conduct this witty, incisive and fantastical work, which addresses urgently topical themes such as the abuses of a powerful political leader and the gathering climate crisis.

The season completes with Puccini’s La rondine, directed by James Hurley and conducted by Kerem Hasan, with a cast including Galina Averina as Magda, Claire Lees as Lisette, Sébastien Guèze as Ruggero and Elgan Llŷr Thomas as Prunier.

La rondine at Opera North

Winter 2024

A revival of Giles Havergal’s production of Britten’s comedy Albert Herring, opens the winter season with performances taking place in the intimate space of the Howard Assembly Room, Leeds. Dame Josephine Barstow returns to the role of Lady Billows while Music Director Garry Walker conducts.

Tim Albery’s classic production of Mozart’s Così fan tutte features a new cast including Alexandra Lowe as Fiordiligi and Heather Lowe as Dorabella, with Anthony Gregory and Henry Neill as their duplicitous lovers Ferrando and Guglielmo. Performances will be conducted by Clemens Schuldt and Chloe Rooke, each making their Opera North debuts.

Completing the Winter season, a double-bill of short operas pairs a revival of Mascagni’s Cavalleria rusticana with a new production of Rachmaninov’s rarely performed Aleko. Karolina Sofulak directs both halves of the double-bill, which will be conducted by Principal Guest Conductor Antony Hermus.

Many of the cast take roles in both works, including Robert Hayward, who sings Alfio in Cavalleria rusticana and the title role in Aleko, and Anne-Marie Owens who sings Lucia in Cavalleria rusticana and Baboushka in Aleko.

Giselle Allen as Santuzza in Cavalleria rusticana (2017) © Robert Workman

Audiences and Access

Continuing our commitment to increasing accessibility, most performances will have English surtitles, and there will be a range of both Sign Interpreted and Audio-Described performances in all venues, as well as a Relaxed Performance of Falstaff at Leeds Grand Theatre.

Ticket prices for mainstage opera productions start from £15, and we have a number of membership and new to opera schemes offering 100 reduced and accessibly priced tickets at every performance at Leeds Grand Theatre, including free tickets for 16-20 year olds. We also offer Under 30s membership and great seats for just £20 for new attenders at all tour venues through Try it ON.

Helen Sherman as Dorabella and Gavan Ring as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte (2016) © Tristram Kenton

Engaging with more than 100 community groups across Leeds and West Yorkshire to open up our work to people who may have barriers that prevent them from participating in the arts, Community Partnerships has welcomed six new Encore Plus partners for 2023. Two of these partnerships reflect our position as the only opera company in the UK to have been awarded Theatre of Sanctuary status for our work with refugees and sanctuary seekers: Leeds Refugee Forum which helps refugees and asylum seekers in the city to rebuild their lives, and Solace which provides mental health and wellbeing support for people with experience of exile and persecution. Since it began in 2013, the Encore community scheme has welcomed more than 14,000 attendees to our performances.

Richard Mantle, General Director, Opera North:

“Opera North is a company which constantly innovates and evolves in response to a changing world. No challenge is more urgent for us all than the climate crisis, and we are committed to the positive change that we – along with all our colleagues in the music and theatre sectors – must make in order to reduce our environmental impact and run our operation more sustainably.

“Our creative teams for the Green Season have embraced these challenges with imagination and invention, and I am confident that the resulting productions will bear all the hallmarks of excellence and innovation audiences expect from Opera North.”


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