‹ Back to What's On Otello

16 Jan - 23 Mar 2013

Giuseppe Verdi (1887)

New production

Iago, an ensign in the Venetian army, is a man who bears a grudge. When his general, Otello, passes him over for promotion in favour of Cassio, Iago’s festering resentment quickly turns to downright malice. He poisons Otello’s mind with suspicion, and step by step, leads Otello to believe that his young wife Desdemona is in love with the young and handsome Cassio. And so Iago, a man consumed by envy, makes Otello into a monster of murderous jealousy.

Celebrating the 200th anniversary of the composer’s birth, this breathtaking new production brings Shakespeare’s great tragedy to life through Verdi’s most exquisite, passionate and profoundly moving music. A tale of betrayed friendship, suspicion and jealousy, it is widely regarded as the crowning glory of Italian opera.

This new production reunites the production team of Tim Albery and designer Leslie Travers who created Opera North’s recent, widely acclaimed Giulio Cesare; Music Director Richard Farnes conducts.

Sung in Italian with English titles

Lasts approximately 2 hours 45 minutes

Supported by The Peter Moores Foundation and the Opera North Future Fund

What the critics say

The Telegraph - Full Review ›

The Financial Times - Full Review ›

The production, set in a 1940s US naval camp, featured some marvellous set pieces, with Verdi’s multi-layered singing lines built into magnificent crescendos. The choir was in full voice, while the performance from the pit under Richard Farnes was gutsy and driven.

The Northern Echo - Full Review ›


  • Otello Ronald Samm
  • Desdemona Elena Kelessidi
  • Iago David Kempster
  • Cassio Michael Wade Lee
  • Emilia Ann Taylor
  • Roderigo Christopher Turner
  • Lodovico Henry Waddington
  • Montano Dean Robinson
  • Herald Paul Gibson
Creative Team
  • Conductor Richard Farnes
  • Director Tim Albery
  • Set and Costume Designer Leslie Travers
  • Lighting Designer Thomas C Hase
  • Choreographer Laila Diallo
  • Fight Director Will Tristam

Click on the venue below to plan your visit.

Leeds Grand Theatre

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46 New Briggate
Leeds Grand Theatre

Important Information

Box Office: 0844 848 2720 (calls cost 7ppm)

  • To access the Grand Theatre, there are six steps from the street up to the foyer or a wheelchair lift from the Grand Theatre Box Office to the foyer, and then lift access to the rest of the auditorium (excluding the Upper Balcony). Some areas of the auditorium do have steep stairs and may not be suitable for people with limited mobility. Please check with the Box Office. 
  • There are 6 wheelchair spaces: four in the Stalls and two in the Dress Circle.
  • There are accessible toilets at Stalls and Dress Circle levels. 
  • There is an infra-red system in operation for sound amplification. Headsets are available from the Grand Theatre foyer for a £5 refundable deposit. Please ask Box Office staff when booking for advice on the best seats to use this service. 
  • Support dogs are welcome in the auditorium and can be looked after on request. 
  • For refreshments, there are bars at Stalls, Upper Circle and Balcony levels.  

Choose from these fantastic pre-theatre dining options and make your experience complete!

The Alchemist

Opera North ticket holders can enjoy 20% off their food bill at The Alchemist. Located on the second floor of Trinity Shopping Centre, The Alchemist offers a fantastic menu and stunning views of Leeds City Centre. Not available Saturdays. 

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Manahatta is a recently opened bar and kitchen located on Merrion Street, just a minute's walk from Leeds Grand Theatre. Serving a fantastic New York inspired menu made with fresh local produce, guests will receive 20% off their food bill before 6.15pm with proof of ticket. Booking is required. 

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North Bar

Opera North and Howard Assembly Room ticket holders can enjoy 10% off all drinks at New Briggate's finest craft beer hotspot — North Bar, just a stone's throw from Leeds Grand Theatre. 

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Enjoy 15% off all food and drink at authentic Italian wine bar Veeno (Leeds branch only) on presentation of ticket for an Opera North performance. Excludes Fridays and Saturdays after 5.00pm. 

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Veritas Ale & Wine Bar

Enjoy a special pre-opera meal at Veritas Ale & Wine Bar. Just a 5-10 minute walk from Leeds Grand Theatre, choose either two courses for £13.95 (£17.50 with a 175ml house wine) or three courses for £15.95 (£19.50 with a 175ml house wine). Available 5.00-6.30pm. Booking is required.

Download Menu | Book via email or call 0113 242 8094 and quote 'pre-opera menu'

Brasserie Blanc

Sample the fabulous pre-theatre menu at Brasserie Blanc and choose from two courses for £11.95 or three courses for £15.45, with a complimentary glass of fizz for Opera North ticket holders. Located just a 10 minute walk from the Leeds Grand Theatre. Available 12.00-6.30pm, Monday-Saturday. 

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The Reliance

Just a 5 minute walk from Leeds Grand Theatre, The Reliance bar and dining room offers a fantastic pre-theatre menu. Choose from two courses for £14.45 or three courses for £18.90. Available 5.30-6.30pm, Monday-Saturday.

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Find Us

100 Grey Street

Important Information

Box office: 08448 112121


Free Parking in all City Council multi-storey carparks after 5pm.

The two closest car parks to Theatre Royal are the Oxford Street multi-storey (just behind the Laing) and the Dean Street multi-storey. Click here for more info.

There are two parking spaces for blue badge holders on Shakespeare Street and three on Hood Street. Most parking meters are free to Blue Badge Holders.


Alight at Monument Metro Station and follow the signs for the Theatre Royal. We are less than one minutes walk from the Metro entrance on Grey Street.

Travel free on the Metro with your theatre ticket (up to two hours before and after the performance) - simply retain your theatre ticket for inspection by Metro Staff.


The Theatre Royal is only ten minutes walk from Newcastle Central Station.


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Great Victoria Street

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Box office: 028 9024 1919

Easily accessible by road or public transport, The Grand Opera House is located on Great Victoria Street, next door to the world famous Europa Hotel. The main entrance is on Great Victoria Street, with Stage Door located on Glengall Street.

There is a multi-storey car park situated behind the Europa Hotel, accessible via Sandy Row and Hope Street. McCausland Car Park, located onGrosvenor Road, is open to midnight, Monday - Friday, and 11.00pm on Sunday. There is limited on-street parking on Great Victoria Street, while the nearby Days Hotel also offers secure car-parking facilities.

Great Victoria Street Train Station and the Europa Bus Centre are located on Great Victoria Street, next door to the Grand Opera House. Rail services are available on the Bangor, Londonderry, Larne and Portadown lines and cross-border Enterprise services to Dublin are also available. The Europa Bus Centre provides services across Northern Ireland. Timetables can be viewed at www.translink.co.uk or contact 028 9066 6630 for further information.

Salford Quays

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Pier 8
Salford Quays
M50 3AZ

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Box office: 0843 208 6000 

There is a passenger drop-off point immediately in front of The Lowry. Secure parking is available in The Lowry Outlet Mall multi-storey car park. There are designated areas for disabled parking on every level. 

The Lowry is accessible by train, tram and bus. http://www.tfgm.com/

From national railway stations, Manchester Piccadilly and Victoria you can travel to The Lowry by Metrolink tram. You can board an Eccles line tram and should alight at Harbour City, or Media City UK for trams which stop there, as this is slightly closer.

More info: http://www.thelowry.com/plan-your-visit/getting-here/


Find Us

Theatre Square

Important Information

Box Office: 0115 989 5555

Find access details for Nottingham Theatre Royal

By Car

Follow signs for the city centre and the 'Royal Zone'. Nearest car parks are Talbot Street car park and Crowne Plaza Hotel car park on Wollaton Street.
For maps and information about on-street parking, off-street car parks, park and ride and the blue badge scheme please visit Parking In Nottingham

By Bus

For bus times call Nottingham City Transport on 0115 950 6070, Traveline on 0871 200 2233 or visit www.travelineeastmidlands.co.uk   Find out about our £1 return bus ticket here.

By Tram

 The 'Royal Centre' tram stop is directly outside the venue and runs every 10 minutes until midnight. There are five Park and Ride sites along the route. Visit www.thetram.net or call 0115 942 7777 for full details of the tram route. Find out about our £1 return tram ticket here.

By Rail

Nottingham Station is a 15 minute walk or a short taxi or tram ride from the venue. Call 0845 748 4950 or www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times and fares. 


Discover exciting pre-theatre dining options for Nottingham Theatre Royal

What you say

Comment from TheFinn


TheFinn said ago

@Peter Lewis Fairchild. Fair comment Peter, honest mistake and all that re Venice/Cyprus. (Incidentally, you're not the only one, I'm sure I've read at least one 'professional' review elsewhere that complained about no sign of Venice in the setting).

However, isn't that the point? Its not *that* important where it is. Its a military outpost, where Otello's just won a major sea battle. I think that came across clearly - one navy barracks will look much like another surely?

The cast were all staring out 'to sea' over the audience during the storm. Again I thought that was crystal clear. The music and the acting painted the picture, anything more and we would have been getting soaked by buckets of water thrown from the pit.

That's the good thing about art though isn't it? Its about opinions and we take different things away from it and can hopefully agree to differ. You thought Otello was appalling, I thought it was thrilling. You thought Faust was dreadful, I found it thoroughly enjoyable. You thought Norma was one of the worst productions you'd ever seen, I found it profoundly moving.
Doesn't make either of us right or wrong, but it shows the ON must be doing something right for at least one of us.
(Or I'm a cultureless oik who should stick to Status Quo - who I was glad to see went back to an old school line up and set list on the last tour!)




Responding to "TheFinn's" remarks about my comments on Opera North's Otello, I would just like to point out that this was a genuine mistake written in haste. I only realised this after i had submitted the text. Even so, there was not even a hint of Cyprus or the sea in the misconceived designs.

Comment from Steve Walsh


Steve Walsh said ago

I didn't see the ON productions of either Faust or Otello and in truth I'm a bit inexperienced at this live opera game. However, as a general point on this debate, although all art is a product of its time and place of origin, surely great art transcends both. Great music is timeless as are dramatic themes and stories that speak of fundamental aspects of human nature and experience. By comparison, things like set design and costume are surely secondary (if capable of excellence in their own right). If an individual opera can't survive the updating of its less timeless aspects, then perhaps it's lost it's relevance. And any art form that stops evolving will end up in a museum.

Comment from TheFinn


TheFinn said ago

I've disagreed with Mike earlier in this thread about Faust, which (projections apart) I thought was great.

However, I thoroughly agree with him about Otello. I too thought it was outstanding.

I also agree with his pondering about whether some of the harsher critics have axes to grind.

Unlike others here, I'm fairly new to live opera, in fact Opera North's productions over the last five or six years have been my main experiences of it. I have to say I've enjoyed just about everything I've seen ON perform, and not having a history of opera-going I don't feel a purist's obsession with the setting being exactly like every other setting I've seen in the past.

And how outrageous that there was no hint of Venice in an Opera based in a military outpost in Cyprus! - I'm no ex-professional theatre designer and it might be pushing it to say I was an Opera fanatic, but I think if I was I'd have spotted that.

I guess its the same as seeing settings of Shakespeare that aren't in Elizabethan costume and performed at the Globe - a good story will out if acted well.

But hey, what do I know? I'd been boogieing to Status Quo the night before :D

Comment from Elisabetta


Elisabetta said ago

To my opinion, it is quite ok to set an opera wherever and whenever, as long as it is artistically justified. I'm not sure what I think about the military touch on 'Otello', though. It isn't the best Verdi production I have ever seen but it had its touching moments, e.g. children with fairy-wings giving presents to Desdemona or light effects in the storm scene. And it is much better than Don Goivanni, which - I hate to say that - was an abomination. I don't usually condemn things, but what was done to Mozart was just not fair. This 'Otello' at least has some conception behind it, some thought.

Musically, Ronald Samm is the strongest part of the cast, and it is also great to hear a black voice sing Otello. David Kempster's Iago was, dramatically, very untypical to me. Did you notice that during his credo aria the character clearly was... afraid? Iago - afraid! I have to think about it :)

Probably the hall in Theatre Royal in Nottingham is too small for a Verdi orchestra, but dramatic moments sounded so loudly that it was hardly possible comprehend the details. I do understand that sometimes being loud is good with Verdi but even the storm scene has its subtler moments.

Comment from Opera North


Opera North said ago

Dear Peter Lewis Fairchild,
Many thanks for taking the time again to describe your concerns about re-setting productions. Our forthcoming productions of Albert Herring and Death in Venice will be approximately set in the time they were written, so we are looking forward to hearing your comments on either.




As an ex-professional theatre designer and opera fanatic, i think i have the right to believe that i know what i am talking about, and i repeat that i thought Opera North's production of Otello was absolutely appalling, ( though not as bad as their Faust i might add). When are they ever going to give us a production set in the period specified by the composer and librettist? This mania for up-dating and re-setting serves only to distract and confuse. There is nothing wrong with tradition. These directors and designers should remember that they are the servants of the composers, librettists and singers, not the raison d'etre for the proceedings.I dread to think what Opera North have in store for us in future programmes, and don't forget that this is public money they are playing around with.

Comment from Mike


Mike said ago

I could not disagree more with M.F. Lang and Donald Rich - I do not think they could possibly have been at the same production as I was. The orchestra was anything but 'flat and flabby' and it is a gross insult to call the singers incompetent (it makes me wonder if people have axes to grind?).

The early departure of Mr Rich meant that he missed one of the most dramatically acted and tender scenes that I have seen.

Of course the statement from Mr Rich that Acts 3 and 4 were better on his DVD is invalid - how can you compare two things when you have not seen one of them?

I was, as I have said before, disappointed with Faust. However, I do not think that opera should be stuck in the past with traditional only settings - and this modern setting worked (as did WNO's Cosi Fan Tutti and the Lulu they also produced and the GTO's Hansel and Gretal and also the production of The Marriage of Figaro they recently toured).

As I have previously indicated - Otello was outstanding.

Comment from Irene


Irene said ago

'Otello' inspired me and challenged my pre-conceptions of Opera. Despite studying Theatre Design at University and regularly visiting the Theatre, Opera still seems intimidating to me . However, this combination of classical and contemporary gives a wider opportunity for everyone to enjoy Opera, despite their age or social class. It is great that Opera North is exposing this art form to a wider audience :)

Comment from Opera North


Opera North said ago

Dear M.F. Lang, We are of course very sorry to hear you didn't enjoy the performance. It hurts that you are comparing us so unfavourably to some unknown standards, but obviously that is your right. However, you will hopefully understand that we simply can't accept your comments on our singers and orchestras. To describe artists that have trained and performed at some of world's most renowned institutions and stages as 'inadequate' and 'incompetent' without any further explanation is simply disrespectful.

Dear Mr Rich, we are disappointed to read that you didn't enjoy our production of Otello, we believe that the updated setting really adds something new to the dramatic relevance of the piece and it is a shame you didn't stay for the whole performance.

Comment from Donald Rich


Donald Rich said ago

Salford on 13 March was my twentieth Otello but the production was so awful that I did not last the evening; the set for Act 1 looked like an army canteen with no hint of proximity to the sea, and it got worse. At the interval I decided that Acts 3 and 4 would be more enjoyable on my DVD at home - they were. However, the orchestra and singing were fine and it is good that ON are now singing in the original language as opera in translation is a no go area for me.

Comment from m.f.lang


m.f.lang said ago

OTELLO. a complete disaster. I can see this theatre from my bedroom window. It cost for 2, with dinner, 200 euros. It was like a back street farce, the singers completely incompetent and the orchestra flat and flabby. It is an insult to present an opera like this without adequate singers. It reflected the generally abysmal standard of Opera North.

Comment from Mike


Mike said ago

After a disappointing Faust I was a bit nervous about Otello. It turned out to be magnificent and has re-established my faith in Opera North after the fouling of Faust. The chorus in Otello were fantastic and Desdemona was played with tenderness and vulnerability - her last scene was really emotionally charged - very well played by Elena Kelessidi. A much better production that Faust (without a digital projector in sight). Back to form ON.




I thought this production was absolutely awful.Typical of what we have come to expect from Opera North these days. Once again infected with "produceritis" and barmy "concept" ideas. Why can't they leave well alone and let's have the operas as the composers and librettists intended.There was not a hint of Venice and the set was more appropriate to the prison yard in Beethoven's Fidelio.The drab 1950's costumes also didn't help. There was no co-relation to what we were listening to and what we were looking at. And i won't go on about the other debacles, Carmen, Norma (one of the worst productions i have ever seen), and i thought it couldn't get any worse,- Faust. A traditional production like John Copley's La Boheme at Covent Garden has lasted 40 years. These Opera North productions will be lucky if they are ever seen again. I felt sympathy for the Otello Ronald Stamm who was not well, particularly as i had regarded him as one of the best Otellos i had ever encountered, having already seen him in the Birmingham Opera Company's production. But, please Opera North, get us some decent producers and designers who really understand Opera.

Comment from TheFinn


TheFinn said ago

Otello at Salford Lowry last night (13 March).
Superb night out. Fantastic performances & the orchestra were great. Great use of the set and lighting.
Wanted to 'boo' David Kempster pantomime style at the curtain call, as his portrayal of Iago was so well done.
The Chorus! Wow! 'Glory to the Lion of Venice' pure powerful pomp - excellent!
And if that's Ronald Samm and Elena Kelessidi singing when they've got a cold, I envy those of you who see them when they're feeling well, because they were great. The Willow Song was beautiful & Samm was just presence all the way through with great acting and singing.
Well done!

Comment from Opera North


Opera North said ago

Thank you for your kind words Gavin. Very pleased that you enjoyed the performance and a belated happy birthday to your wife as well - great to hear that you chose to celebrate this occasion with us.

Comment from Gavin


Gavin said ago

The morning after a truly superb performance in Newcastle. There as a surprise for my wife's 40th birthday.
It didn't disappoint in any way shape or form.
The score was fabulous as were the acting and voices.
Emotional and comical, this had it all.
Bravo Opera North. Highly recommended.

Comment from John mitchell


John mitchell said ago

Saw Otello two days ago. Orchestra and conducting absolutely superb - everything one could expect from this wonderful score. From where we were sitting in the Upper Circle, Otello and Desdemona seemed underpowered for the high dramatic moments, apart from the last act in which Elena Kelessidis gave a heart-rending account of the Willow Song. Tim Albery's translation of the action in time and place added nothing to either Shakespeare or Verdi. Otello's presence was commanding enough but why did Desdemona look like someone straight out of the typing pool? An absorbing evening and great to see ON tackle this most challenging opera but, overall dramatically disappointing.

Comment from Susan Firth


Susan Firth said ago

We had read the Sunday Times comments so we were not sure what to expect.

First the positives. Orchestra and chorus - both exceptional - can't praise enough.

Otello - strong and powerful.

Lago - played the part very well and delivered.

Desdemona - unfortunately this part was the weak link. Should have been played by someone much younger. The character therefore did not really ring true.

On the whole a lovely evening.

Comment from Graham Neal


Graham Neal said ago

A wonderful production. We enjoyed particularly the tension and drama of the second act. The acting was convincing and did justice to the passions of the relationship. I loved the contrast between the voices of Desdemona and Otello which were tender and powerful. The chorus and orchestra were also very impressive. Thank you for a wonderful night at the theatre.

Comment from dermot stewart


dermot stewart said ago

Sadly we arrived late, so had to sit at the back intead of my favoured front rows. So unable to empathise with the characters, though well sung and played. The elaborate realistic set and rather immobile acting detracted from my enjoyment. Cheering to see the lively and smiling bows taken, after the misery of the story.

Comment from Robert Hart


Robert Hart said ago

Gripping performance. The music and the orchestral playing completely set the pace, atmosphere and emotions of the stage action in a way I cannot recall experiencing before. Quite magnificent.

Comment from Damian Oxborough


Damian Oxborough said ago

Really enjoyed the show this Friday gone: the leads were magnificent. I was even inspired to write a short review: http://www.finishmysong.com/review_otello_operanorth_leeds_feb13.php

Comment from Vix


Vix said ago

What a wonderful adaptation. The Orchestra were magnificent. I was sorry there was not more call for the harp! The set design is brilliant and inspirational.

Ronald Samm has an excellent quality to his voice that is so emotive, it pulls you in from the off. Elena Kelessidi's passion during the scene where Desdemona protests her innocence was played so well I found it upsetting to watch.

The final scene has quite an impact.

Thank you very much.

Comment from Catherine, Leeds


Catherine, Leeds said ago

A truly fabulous experience, my husband and I enjoyed it immensely. The whole range of human emotion on display, very powerful. The performances of the characters were all excellent.

Comment from Helen, Leeds


Helen, Leeds said ago

A great production of Otello, with ON orchestra in stunning form. Iago was marvellous throughout. Otello and Desdemona started uncertainly but were soon in fine voice. Cassio - lovely sound. Extremely good acting too.

Comment from Tim Hills


Tim Hills said ago

Good production. First reviews seem to be:




Comment from Victor


Victor said ago

Like your other commentators, I am also looking forward to Otello. I recently saw David Kempster with the WNO and feel that he will make a fine Iago. However, for me, the quality of the singers is all-important and I hope that Ronald Samm will be able to give us a memorable performance in the title role. Even the greatest tenors don't always rise to this demanding role, and I particularly remember forking out for my whole family to see Ben Heppner as Otello in Covent Garden. Unfortunately, the tenor's opening "Esultate!" after the storm scene, which should ring out in a thrilling way as a portent of a heroic performance to come, was a damp squib.

I saw the Opera North Faust at Nottingham and was also underwhelmed by the production which probably suffered from necessary budget constraints. Like some previous ON productions, having the action take place on a flat stage, with little opportunity for the singers to appear at different levels, is very restrictive. However, in an expensive undertaking like grand opera, I much prefer that the money is spent on musical aspects, even to the extent of occasionally being restricted to concert performances. The Faust soloists did not disappoint.

Comment from TheFinn


TheFinn said ago

Fair comment Mike. I kinda know what you mean about the projections, but my tactic was to focus them out as much as poss after a while. By closing your eyes I think you missed out on some great performances.

I also think there's something a little bit more magical about a live voice in the room your in compared to a CD through your speakers.

But like I said, horses for courses.

Comment from Mike


Mike said ago

In response to TheFinn, the music and singing were both good. I can, however, get that from a CD (I listened to the Sutherland and Corelli version before going to the performance). I am not against modern versions of opera, but after a while the projections were repetitive and I found that the performance was best enjoyed with my eyes closed. As I have said, I can get that experience at home with a CD at a fraction of the cost.

Comment from TheFinn


TheFinn said ago

Horses for courses I suppose, but I really enjoyed the Faust production at the Lowry. Music and singing were superb - especially James Creswell's Mephistopheles.
I liked the way it was transposed onto an election rather than a war, although I can understand how others might have baulked at this.

The projections didn't fully work for me as they were a bit too repetitive, but apart from that I thought it was a great night out.

Comment from Mike


Mike said ago

I have to agree with Peter Hilton, the production of Faust at Salford was one the least engaging performances I have been to. It was dire and dreadfully directed. I feel hesitant about spending more money to see Otello and only hope that Faust was a blip for Opera North.

Comment from keep it fresh


keep it fresh said ago

Let's not get bogged down with tradition here people. We need to make engaging, vibrant, living opera, we can't let this art form die as a dusty old museum piece. Modern dress is just as valid a choice as period costume: not every experiment will work, but we have to keep trying!

Comment from Pauline


Pauline said ago

Well said Peter Hilton. I totally agree. I love opera, but only when it is performed as the composer intended. Why perform these beautiful operas in modern dress and modern times ? The composer's original works are prefect when performed as intended. Why some people have to change this and ruin it, I do not understand. Do they really think they can do a better job than the composer himself? ? Of course they can't! ! ! Come on Opera North let us go back to the beautiful traditional operas !

Comment from Opera North


Opera North said ago

Dear Peter, we're sorry to hear that you didn't enjoy our production of Faust. Otello production photography will be online shortly after the dress rehearsal which takes place on January 14th.

Comment from Peter Hilton


Peter Hilton said ago

looking for photos of the production cos i will not be going if it has been mucked about as much as the rubbish version of Faust I saw in Salford this year

Comment from Michael.yorkshire


Michael.yorkshire said ago

This will be a triumph. Ronald Samm gave stunning performances in the title role with Birmingham Opera (broadcast on BBC 2) and as the first black englishman to play Otello in the UK the praise heaped upon him was richly deserved. Looking forward to it enormously!

Leave a comment

Restaurant Deals


We’ve teamed up with Piazza by Anthony in Leeds to offer you an exclusive pre-theatre menu. Enjoy 2 Courses for £17.95 or 3 Courses for £21.95. Please use the promotion code ‘OPERANORTH’ when booking your table online or by calling 0113 2470995. This special offer is also available without booking, simply turn up and show your opera tickets to the receptionist.

Available from 4pm until 7pm every night between Wednesday 16th January and Saturday 23rd February 2013 , and From 12pm until 4pm on Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th February 2013. Only valid on the day of the performance your ticket is for. Not to be used in conjunction with any other offer.

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Just a short walk from the theatre, another fantastic dining option is The Reliance (76-78 North Street).Treat yourself to the pre-theatre menu served between 5:30 and 6:30pm, Mon - Sat. Enjoy 2 courses for £13.95 or 3 courses for £17.90. Call 0113 2956060 to book a table. 


Why not make a night of it and enjoy a pre-show meal at The Lowry Restaurant? You can have your theatre programmes delivered to your table, pre-order your interval drinks or return for dessert and coffee during the interval. Call 0161 876 2121 to reserve your table.


Enjoy a two course pre-theatre meal at Pasqualino’s for just £15.50 or £13 for Friends. Available 5.30pm. Call the Box Office on 08448 11 21 21 to book.

Offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. T&Cs apply.

Did You Know?

Verdi who had decided to end his career as composer at the height of his success after the premiere of Aida in 1871, had to be brought out of retirement by his publisher, the legendary Giulio Ricordi, to write Otello, widely considered to be his greatest score.  

Season Tickets

Full information can be found here.

On sale dates for Leeds Grand Theatre
Booking for fixed subscriptions opens 28 May and booking for multibuy ticket packages opens 18 June. Priority booking for Friends of Opera North and Groups opens 9 July.

All tickets will be on public sale on 16 July 2012. 

On sale dates for The Lowry 
Booking for multibuy ticket packages opens 14 June. Priority booking for Friends of Opera North and My Lowry opens 28 June.

All tickets will be on public sale on 5 July 2012.

On sale dates for Theatre Royal Nottingham
Booking for multibuy ticket packages opens 11 June. Priority booking for Friends of Opera North opens 25 June.

All tickets will be on public sale on 2 July 2012.


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No concessions on £16 tickets

All week

  • Multibuy Packages: 15% off when you book 3-4 operas; 20% off when you book 5-6 operas. Full details here
  • Groups of 10 or more: £4 off per ticket. No booking fee.Where over half the group is entitled to concessions: £4 off per ticket plus 1 in 10 free.
  • Essential companions for disabled visitors are entitled to a free seat. Contact Box Office for details.
  • Family ticket: 50% off for up to four under 16s with each adult ticket.

Tuesday – Friday

  • Over 60s, Disabled people, JSA, New Deal, Pension Credit: £3 off
  • Full time students: £10 Stalls tickets with ID.
  • Visually impaired people: £15 tickets reserved in the most appropriate area for the audio-described performance. No booking fee.


All week

  • Multibuy Packages: 10% off when you book 3-4 operas; 15% off when you book 5-7 operas. Full details here
  • Friends of Theatre Royal: 20% off
  • Companion: One free ticket for the companion of a disabled person who is not able to attend the event unaccompanied. To be eligible you produce one of the following as validation of status: A letter confirming receipt of Disability Living Allowance; a Local Authority Mobility Card/Pass; a Disabled Person’s Railcard; a Local Authority Registration Card for Visual Impairment or certificate or a Doctor’s note (valid for 6 months).

Tuesday – Thursday (Excluding Gallery Seats)

  • Group bookings:
    • 10 or more: £2 off
    • 20 or more: £2.50 off + 1 free ticket
    • 40 or more: £3.50 off + 1 free ticket + 1 free programme
    • 100 or more: £4.50 off
  • Standby: half price from 2 hours before the start of the performance in the Upper Circle/Amphitheatre/Gallery subject to availability.
  • Visually impaired people: £2 off and one free ticket for an Assistant if unable to attend unaccompanied, for the Audio-described performance. 


All week

  • Multibuy Packages: 10% off when you book 3-4 operas; 15% off when you book 5-6 operas. Full details here
  • Group bookings: 20% off for groups of 8 or more
  • Disabled people: 50% off for patron and essential companion in Stalls
  • Standby tickets: Under 26s £7.50 in Stalls. Concession holders half price. Available from 6.00pm on the day. Subject to availability. Max 2 per person.

Tuesday – Friday Excl. Balcony Seats

  • Retired over 60: 10% off
  • Under 18s: 50% off
  • Registered unwaged: 50% off
  • Full time student: £10 stalls
  • School Groups: 50% off in the Balcony for 10+One free teacher place per 20 pupils booked.
  • Visually impaired people: 50% off in the Stalls for the Audio-described performance. 


  • Multibuy: Buy seats for Friday or Saturday and get 25% off tickets for Wednesday or Thursday performances (equivalent number of tickets)
  • Friends: 10% off Wednesday/Thursday evenings
  • Groups: Every 11th seat free (the free seat will be the cheapest purchased). Plus: groups of 8+ will get £1 off per seat; groups of 16+ £2 off per seat
  • Schools/Colleges: 1 free teacher for every 10 pupils booked
  • Standby: from 6pm on day of performance half price for senior citizens and unemployed people; £10 tickets for students
  • Access policy: a free companion seat for customers with disabilities who require assistance.

Access performances

This winter selected performances of Verdi’s Otello will be audio-described (by Vocaleyes including a free touch tour of set and costumes).

Audio-described performances by Vocaleyes

  • Leeds Grand Theatre             
    Sat 16 February, 2.30pm (Touch tour starts at 1.15pm)
  • Theatre Royal Newcastle      
    Sat 2 March, 7.30pm (Touch tour starts at 6:15pm)
  • The Lowry, Salford Quays   
    Sat 16 March, 7.30pm (Touch tour starts at 6:15pm)
  • Theatre Royal Nottingham   
    Sat 23 March, 7.30pm (Touch tour starts at: 6:15pm)

For more information, to book for Leeds performances, to join our free mailing list or to discuss your requirements, please contact Eloise Williamson on 0113 22 33 590 or email eloise.williamson@operanorth.co.uk.