#OperaPassion Day

Join us on Thursday 19 October as we celebrate #OperaPassion Day; a huge online event on BBC Arts Digital bringing together live streamed activity from eight leading UK opera companies.

Throughout the day, people will be taken on an operatic journey across the UK, with glimpses behind the scenes and live performances from Opera North, the Royal Opera House, English National Opera, English Touring Opera, Glyndebourne, Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera and Northern Ireland Opera. Tomorrow's World and Manchester's Museum of Science and Industry will also provide snippets exploring the science behind the art form, including investigating whether a soprano's voice can really shatter a wineglass.  View full schedule

 Watch Live 

What will Opera North be doing on #OperaPassion Day?

At 1.00pm, Opera North is taking opera out into the city. We'll be at Leeds Dock with a ‘pop-up’ Opera in a Nutshell performance.

Packed with comedy, deceit, love and tragedy, Opera in a Nutshell has been designed to give people a half hour crash course in the emotion, power and variety of the art-form with scenes and songs from a host of popular operas including Mozart’s The Magic Flute, Bizet’s Carmen and Verdi’s La traviata.

There will also be lesser-known excerpts from the current season of The Little Greats, including pieces from Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci, Gilbert & Sullivan’s Trial by Jury, Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti and the amazing cat duet from Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges

Opera in a Nutshell has been written by opera singer and director John Savournin who is also the narrator of the piece. He will be joined by soprano Elin Pritchard, who is singing the part of Nedda in Pagliacci, baritone Milo Harries and accordionist Djordje Gajic who provides the musical accompaniment.

How can I watch?

You can follow the full day on the BBC’s #OperaPassion Day page and watch the broadcast on our Facebook page. The audience on the day will be strictly limited unfortunately, but there are other opportunities to see this 'Whistle Stop Opera' in Leeds and on tour. 

How can I take part?

You can join in the celebrations on social media by using the hashtag #OperaPassion and we'll also be asking our followers on Facebook and Twitter what opera they would recommend to someone new to the art form. Have your answers ready!

Who are the performers?

Elin Pritchard (soprano)

  • Graduate of the National Opera Studio (2013) — a rising star
  • Made her Opera North debut in Jan 2017 as Kupava in our new production of Rimsky-Korsakov's rarely performed The Snow Maiden (the first UK staging of the opera in over 60 years) 
  • Currently singing the role of Nedda in our current production of Pagliacci (part of The Little Greats) 

Milo Harries (baritone)

  • Studied at the Royal College of Music
  • Also has a first-class degree in English from the University of Cambridge
  • He is the grandson of late conductor Sir Neville Marriner
  • Milo’s first encounter with professional singing came at the age of fourteen, when he played the third boy in Glyndebourne’s 2004 production of Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute)
  • Covered (understudied) the role of Nathan in the world premiere tour of Mark Simpson's Pleasure, a collaboration between Opera North/The Royal Opera/Aldeburgh Music
  • Has also written and devised new works of theatre! 

John Savournin (baritone AND director)

  • Roles at Opera North (in opera and musicals) include Schaunard (La bohème), Alidoro (La cenerentola) and Second Gunman (Kiss Me, Kate
  • Particular affiliation with the operas of Gilbert & Sullivan, regularly singing roles and directing pieces for the National G&S Opera Company
  • Founded his own company Charles Court Opera in 2005, for which has had directed The Turn of the ScrewCosì fan tutteToscaLa bohème, and most of Gilbert and Sullivan's operettas. 
  • Made his Opera North main stage directing debut this season with Trial by Jury (part of The Little Greats) 
  • Writer, deviser and narrator of our 'Whistle Stop Opera' series — condensed performance designed to introduce newcomers to opera 

Djordje Gajic (accordian) 

  • Djordje Gajic began his musical studies in Yugoslavia at the age of 6, finally graduating from the Russian Academy of Music in 1993 gaining a 'Master of Music' degree and Honorary Title, 'Solo Performer'
  • Djordje is an award winning accordianist and accordion professor at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland