‹ Back to What's On Swanhunter

2 Apr - 3 May 2015

An Opera North / The Wrong Crowd co-production | Composed by Jonathan Dove using a libretto written by Alasdair Middleton

Against his mother’s wishes, Lemminkäinen travels to the icy north in search of a bride. There, impossible tasks await him: he must hunt the Devil’s elk, ride the Devil’s horse, and shoot a swan. But unseen danger lies in wait for him on Death’s river...

Based on a tale from the Finnish folk epic The Kalevala, Swanhunter is a magical chamber opera written by the composer and librettist of Opera North’s hugely successful The Adventures of Pinocchio. Scored for six singers accompanied by six instrumentalists, Swanhunter is a celebration of the power of song, designed specifically for a family audience – for adults just as much as for children.

Opera North gave the world premiere of Swanhunter in the Howard Assembly Room in Leeds in 2009. For this brand new production, Opera North collaborates for the first time with the acclaimed theatre company The Wrong Crowd to create an inventive fusion of opera, puppetry and live action.

Suitable for ages 7+ | Lasts approximately 1 hour 10mins (no interval) | Sung in English

The story so far...

Discover more at the Howard Assembly Room, Leeds:

Interactive pre-show talk
Sat 18 April, 12.15pm and 5.15pm
(Free to ticket holders)

Meet the puppets and discover the secrets, myths and magic behind the beautiful creation of this exciting tale with members of the cast and creative team. Tickets must be booked in advance.
Book pre-show talk Sat 18 April 12.15 - 1.00pm
Book pre-show talk Sat 18 April 5.15 - 6.00pm

Swanhunter Performance for Schools
Mon 20 April, 11am
Dedicated performance solely for an audience of school parties. Find out more or book directly with Andy Kitching, group sales officer at Leeds Grand Theatre: andy.kitching@leedsgrandtheatre.com | 0844 8482705

Supportive online resources are available. Discover more...

Pre/post show talks may be available at other venues, please check the venue's website or with their Box Office when making your booking.



  • Lemminkäinen (Tenor) Adrian Dwyer
  • Mother (mezzo soprano) Ann Taylor
  • Swan/ Chorus (soprano) Suzanne Shakespeare
  • Louhi/ Chorus (mezzo soprano) Rebecca Afonwy-Jones
  • Dog/Soppy Hat / Death’s Son (tenor) Christopher Diffey
  • Dog/Death/Smith/Chorus (Bass) Matthew Hargreaves
Creative Team
  • Conductor Justin Doyle
  • Conductor Ian Ryan (18, 26, 27 Apr)
  • Director Hannah Mulder
  • Designer & Puppet Director Rachael Canning
  • Lighting Designer Richard Howell

Click on the venue below to plan your visit.


Find Us



Find Us


Important Information

Please note the time listed on your ticket/webpage is the start time for the performance. Leeds Grand Theatre is open from 1 hour beforehand for ticket collection etc. and doors to the Howard Assembly Room itself open approximately 30 minutes beforehand. Where there is a support act, this will also be stated on the website/ticket. We recommend arriving at least 15 minutes before show time as latecomers will only be admitted during a suitable break in the performance.

The Howard Assembly Room is located inside Leeds Grand Theatre

Leeds Grand Theatre is situated on New Briggate in the heart of Leeds City Centre.

The theatre is easily accessible by public transport. It is approximately 10 minutes walk from the main bus station and 15 minutes walk from the train station with many buses stopping in the immediate vicinity. For the most up to date information on local bus and train times, please check WYMetro. There is also a taxi rank outside the theatre although we recommend booking a taxi in advance, particularly on a Friday or Saturday evening.

Parking is available at various nearby car parks, including Edward Street/Templar Street and the St John's and Merrion Centre shopping malls. A limited amount of on street parking is available near the theatre is free after 6pm but this does tend to fill up very quickly.



Find Us

21 Kingland Road
BH15 1UG


Poole's Centre For The Arts

Getting to Poole couldn't be easier!

By Road

From London - 2 hours 
From Bristol - 1hr 45
From Southampton - 40 minutes 
From Bournemouth - 10 minutes

Travelling west on the M27 the road becomes the A31 bypassing Ringwood, Ferndown and Wimborne Minster. Remain on the bypass until reaching the roundabout junction signposted the A349 Poole town centre and ferry port. 

Follow the A349 and ferry signs until reaching the roundabout signposted the A350 Poole town centre. This roundabout has the Poole Fairway marker buoy in the centre of it.

Turn left here onto the A350 (Holes Bay Road). Follow the dual carriage way which skirts the bay. At the next roundabout at the end of Holes Bay Rd turn left onto the flyover  and move to the right hand lane. At the next roundabout turn right and within a minute you will see Lighthouse on your left.

Car Parks

There is plenty of car park space very close to Lighthouse. Parking is available at The Dolphin shopping centre multi-storey over the road from Lighthouse and the level access car park directly opposite.  There is also a car park located at the Dolphin Swimming Centre next to Everyone Active, only a five minute walk away.

Disabled parking is available directly outside Lighthouse.


Lighthouse is opposite Poole bus station with an underpass or a level access crossing  providing easy access across the road.


Bournemouth International Airport is approx. 9.5 miles from Poole.

Southampton Airport Parkway is a 45 minute train journey direct to Poole rail station.


Poole Rail Station is in the town centre a 5 minute walk from Lighthouse. Follow signs to ‘Arts Centre’ which take you through the shopping centre to the bus station.  Lighthouse is opposite the bus station.

South West Trains run a half hourly train service to Poole station from London Waterloo with a journey time of around 2 hours.

Coach Service

National Express offers a regular service to most major towns and cities plus a Flightlink service to/from Heathrow Airport and central London with connections to Gatwick Airport.

Ferry Services

Daily Summer sailings from Cherbourg, France and the Channel Islands with Condor Ferries.


Find Us

Clifton Way

Important Information

How to find us...

By Train

Cambridge Junction is less than ten minutes walk from from Cambridge Railway Station. 

Turn left out of the station on to Station Place, walk for a few minutes before turning right on to Brookgate. Turn left by the Co-op on to Hills Road and walk over the railway bridge. As you pass over the bridge, you will see Cambridge Junction on your left. 

Access can be gained via the stairs from the bridge or by continuing across the bridge and turning left into Cherry Hinton Road and across Cambridge Leisure Plaza.

For further information visit the National Rail Enquiries website or call 08457 48 49 50.

By Car
  • From the South (London & M25) - M25, M11
  • From the North West (Huntingdon, Peterborough & Northampton) - A14 then M11
  • From the West (Bedford, St Neots & Milton Keynes) - A428 then M11
  • From the East (Newmarket, Bury St Edmunds, Ipswich & Norwich) - A11, A14, M11

From all directions outside Cambridge go to Junction 11 on the M11 and take the A1309 into Cambridge for several miles. At the second set of major traffic lights, turn right into Long Road. At the next major traffic lights turn left into Hills Road. After half a mile turn right into Cherry Hinton Road. Turn left unto Clifton Road. After approx 200 metres you will arrive at Clifton Way on your left which leads to Cambridge Junction. For Sat Nav users, our postcode is CB1 7GX.

Parking: Secure car parking is available in the X-Leisure multi-storey car park on Clifton Way, adjacent to Cambridge Junction. For more information visit x-leisure.co.uk. Customers visiting Cambridge Junction during the day may validate their parking tickets at the J2 Box Office to obtain a discounted rate. 

By Bicycle or On Foot from the City Centre

Cambridge Junction is a 30 minute walk from the centre of Cambridge. Head out of the city on St Andrews Street, with the Grand Arcade shopping centre on your right. Stay on this road as it becomes Regent Street.

When you get to the Catholic Church with the high spire at the crossroads where Hills Road, Regent Street, Gonville Place and Lensfield Road meet, head straight up Hills Road. As you pass over the bridge, you will see The Junction on your left.

Access can be gained via the stairs from the bridge or by continuing across the bridge and turning left into Cherry Hinton Road and across Cambridge Leisure Plaza. There are a huge number of cycle racks outside Cambridge Junction.

By Bus

Buses run regularly along Hills Road and Cherry Hinton Road throughout the day and early evening. Nightbuses pass to and from the City Centre, Arbury, Kings Hedges, Chesterton, Trumpington, Queen Edith’s Way, Cherry Hinton, Perne Road and the Whitehill Estate. For further information visit Stagecoach website or call 08712 00 22 33.


Find Us


Important Information

How to Get There

via Rail

Doncaster Train Station is about a 10-15 minute walk from Cast and has excellent national rail links. Check www.nationalrail.co.uk for timetables and bookings.

via Bus

Doncaster Interchange is about a 10-15 minute walk from Cast and has excellent regional bus links, as well as National Express and Megabus coach links. Check www.travelsouthyorkshire.com for more information.

via Road

We are located within Doncaster Town Centre, and are a short walk away from the Doncaster Civic Quarter Car Park.  When arriving by road, please note that Cast is situated on a Public Square and access to the road immediately outside is restricted to public transport only. Please head to the Civic Quarter Car Park for parking (DN1 3JQ) or drop off only in the short stay car park opposite (DN1 3EY).


Doncaster Civic Quarter Car Park

850 spaces in covered multi storey car park
Safe, secure, covered multi storey car park less than 3 minutes walk to Cast
5am to 11.30pm (Monday to Saturday)
10am to 11.30pm (Sunday)
Competitive tariffs: including £2 evening tariff for theatregoers
Passenger lifts to all floors, including one disabled compliant lift
Disabled parking spaces on all floors in close proximity to passenger lifts

- See more at: http://castindoncaster.com/your-visit#sthash.YKg4MEbk.dpuf

Salford Quays

Find Us

Pier 8
Salford Quays
M50 3AZ

Important Information

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

Bondgate Without
NE66 1PQ

Important Information

Alnwick Playhouse is just outside the walls of Alnwick town, 35 miles north of Newcastle upon Tyne and 30 miles south of Berwick upon Tweed and the Scottish Border.

Box Office Opening Times

Tues - Sat: 10.00am - 5.00pm
Sun & Mon: Closed
and for 45 minutes before a performance
At other times, a recorded information service is available on the box office telephone number.

Getting there

We are just over a mile from the main A1 road which goes from London (315 miles) to Edinburgh (90 miles). There is extensive parking to the rear of the Playhouse which is free in the evenings and pay-and-display at other times.


There are rail services from London King's Cross, Newcastle and Edinburgh which stop at Alnmouth, 5 miles from Alnwick. The journey may be completed by taxi or bus.


There are buses from Alnmouth, Newcastle and Berwick which stop at Alnwick.


Newcastle International airport is 35 miles from Alnwick.  


Find Us

Beaumont Street
NE46 3LS

Important Information


If you are attending a performance after 5pm, free parking is available on Beaumont Street. At other times this parking is metered. There is limited parking in the Market Place or alternatively at the Wentworth Leisure Centre by Waitrose supermarket.


Queen's Hall is a five minute walk from Hexham Train Station.


Find Us

University of Kent

Important Information

Nestled in the heart of the University of Kent campus in Canterbury, Gulbenkian is not just a theatre.

Ticket & Information: 01227 769075 ( Monday – Saturday, 10am – 7pm. Sunday 12pm - 7pm- hours vary depending on programme)

Getting there
By foot & bicycle

Gulbenkian is easily reached by foot from Canterbury via the Crab & Winkle Way & Eliot footpath. Please see map for cycling routes around campus and cycle lock ups.

By bus

A regular bus service operates from Canterbury City Centre to the University and from Whitstable to the University. For details please telephone Travel Line on 0871 200 2233. 
Unibus 08702 433711 www.stagecoachbus.com/eastkent

By train

The closest BR train station is Canterbury West. From there, buses are available by Westgate to take you onto the University's campus. 
From the University drop off point, follow the signs towards the library and the Cornwallis buildings and on to the theatre. 
For details on how to get to Canterbury West station visit trainline's website for up to the minute planning information.

By car

Follow the A2/M2 towards Dover and turn off onto the A28 towards Canterbury. Continue upto a large round-about and follow the signs to 'The University'. When on the University's campus, follow the signs to the Gulbenkian Theatre and please use Central Car Park next to Gulbenkian. If this car park is full please park in Giles Lane Car Park directly across the road from Gulbenkian. Please see Parking section

Plan your journey using www.transportdirect.info


Find Us

Oxford Street
North Yorkshire

Important Information
Getting there
By Road

Click here for a map of the local area via multimap

From the South M1, A1(M)
From the North A1
From the West M62
From the East

To help you plan your journey by car why not visit either the AA Website or the RAC Website for journey planners from your doorstep to Harrogate Theatre.

Harrogate Theatre is on Oxford Street which is part of Harrogate Borough Council's pedestrianisation programme. Between 10.30am and 5pm no traffic is permitted to enter the street. However, outside these hours theatre patrons are able to drive down Oxford Street to drop off and collect passengers at the front doors of the theatre. During the day the nearest dropping off point is Cheltenham Crescent at the rear of the Theatre.

By Public Transport

The railway and bus station are less than two minutes walk from the Theatre.

To plan your journey by rail please visit the National Rail Enquiries Website

Local Bus service information is available from Harrogate and District Travel on 01423 566 061 or from your local operator.

What you say

This production has no comments. Why not be the first?

Leave a comment

Supported by

Opera North Future Fund, J Paul Getty Jnr Charitable Trust and by using public funding by Arts Council England. In addition we are grateful for the support of the Liz and Terry Bramall Foundation (Yorkshire dates), the Sir John Fisher Foundation (North West dates), the Sir James Knott Trust, the Hedley Denton Charitable Trust and the Carr- Ellison Charitable Trust Fund (North East dates).
Commissioned by Opera North, Licensed by Edition Peters