Grammy Award-winning pianist Chilly Gonzales is known both for the subtlety and poise of his best-selling Solo Piano albums and his charismatic showmanship.
‘Gonzo’ is a man of his time, approaching the piano with classical and jazz training but with the attitude of a rapper – meshing tradition with pop, electro and rap. He performs and writes songs with Jarvis Cocker, Feist and Drake and holds the Guinness world record for the longest solo concert at over 27 hours.
In a rare intimate show, Chilly Gonzales takes to the stage of the Howard Assembly Room with pieces from his Solo Piano album cycle, after which he is joined by Stella Le Page on cello and Joe Flory on drums to perform hits and hidden surprises from the rest of his repertoire, interspersed with his playful explanations about how his music works.
Giacomo Puccini (1900)
Puccini’s melodrama of lust and love, of cruelty and self-sacrifice, of freedom and repression, portrays human relationships at their best and at their worst with uncompromising force.
Tosca, a star singer, is the lover of Cavaradossi, an artist. Scarpia, the corrupt Chief of Police and agent of the state, is obsessed with Tosca and willing to go to any lengths to have her. When Cavaradossi is arrested and tortured for helping an escaped political prisoner, Scarpia blackmails Tosca: she and Cavaradossi can go free if she will give herself to him. Violated, Tosca plots her revenge, but the consequences are more terrible than she can imagine.
Puccini’s high-octane score – at times soaring and tender, at other times brutally powerful – has made Tosca one of the world’s most popular operas. Highlights include the pile-driving ‘Te Deum’, Tosca’s defiant credo ‘Vissi d’arte’, and Cavaradossi’s immensely moving farewell to life, ‘E lucevan le stelle’.
With a stellar cast including Giselle Allen (Santuzza in Cavalleria rusticana), Mexican tenor Rafael Rojas (Calaf in Turandot) and British baritone Robert Hayward (Wotan in the Ring cycle), Opera North’s new Tosca promises to be a compelling experience.
Approximately 2 hours 40 minutes
Sung in Italian with English titles
|Sat 22 Sep||6.00 – 6.45pm||Book now|
|Fri 28 Sep||6.30 – 7.00pm||Book now|
|Thu 11 Oct||6.30 – 7.00pm||Book now|
|Sat 13 Oct||6.30 – 7.00pm||Book now|
Since emerging in 2014 with his self-released cassette EP, Mid-City Island, Moses Sumney has ridden a wave of word-of-mouth praise, hushed recordings, and dynamic live performances.
With his smooth, haunting voice, Sumney makes music that transforms classic styles, as though a moon-colony choir had got hold of old jazz gems. His lyrics narrate a personal journey through universal loneliness with otherworldly compositional backdrops.
In 2017, the California and Ghana-raised troubadour released his debut album Aromanticism. Released to great critical acclaim, Aromanticism was regarded by NPR, Pitchfork and Rolling Stone, as one of 2017's best albums. Following its critical success, Sumney has performed the album to sold out headline shows across North America, Europe, and at the Sydney Opera House.
The Guardian on Aromanticism
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The music of multi-instrumentalist, producer, string-arranger and composer Bill Ryder-Jones has an overarching sense of authenticity, intimacy and wryness, drawing listeners close.
In a career spanning 15 years, he has ever been a musical explorer, with projects ranging from a musical interpretation of Italian Calvino’s If On A Winters Night A Traveller (2011's If..) to the top ten MOJO album of the year in 2016, West Kirby County Primary.
Musicians including as Courtney Barnett and Richard Hawley champion him, while the Guardian describes him ‘A magical, colossal talent (….) that spills melody and emotion’.
In association with Superfriendz
Franz Lehár (1905)
A glittering cast and a superb creative team are brought together for this production of Lehár’s greatest hit, in which Parisian sensuality meets Viennese sophistication.
The question of who the young, beautiful and stupendously wealthy widow Hanna Glawari will take as her second husband is a matter of national economic importance for the little-known – and nearly bankrupt – Balkan state of Pontevedro. If she marries a foreigner, Pontevedro will lose Hanna’s millions. So when the widow arrives in Paris, it’s a cause of high excitement among French bachelors everywhere and high anxiety for the Pontevedrian ambassador, Baron Zeta, who must do everything he can to make sure she remarries a suitable – Pontevedrian – man.
Director Giles Havergal’s matchless sense of authentic style is complemented by the dazzling choreography of Stuart Hopps in a work in which almost every bar is infused with the spirit of the dance. Leslie Travers supplies meticulously elegant fin-de-siècle designs, and Kit Hesketh-Harvey applies his characteristically brilliant wit to a fresh English version of the most popular of 20th-century operettas.
Join us at Maxim’s … an evening of delicious pleasure awaits.
A co-production with Opera Australia
Approximately 2 hours 15 minutes
Sung in English with English titles
|Tue 2 Oct||6.30 – 7.00pm||Book now|
|Sat 6 Oct||6.30 – 7.00pm||Book now|
|Sun 7 Oct||3.00 – 3.30pm||Book now|
|Wed 10 Oct||6.30 – 7.00pm||Book now|
|Fri 12 Oct||6.30 – 7.00pm||Book now|
Benjamin Zephaniah says ‘I can’t take my ears off her’, Kate Tempest describes her poetry as ‘welcoming, galvanising and beautiful’. With over ten million YouTube views for her online poetry performances, Ted Hughes Award winner Hollie McNish is a poet whose readings are not to be missed.
Here, she will be joining us to perform poems and talk about her latest poetry collection, Plum: a wise, sometimes rude and piercingly candid collection about growing up. She talks fruit and flesh, guilt, sex, politics and breasts, together with the urgent need to find a voice for poems that will somehow do the whole glorious riot justice.
Books will be available to purchase at the event. There will be a book signing afterwards.
Her rhymes have a driving quality, urgent words pinning down fleeting feelings
Schubert’s magnificent ‘Trout’ Quintet, possibly the best-known chamber piece in the world, comes to joyful life under the bows and fingers of the Opera North String Quartet, joined by pianist Ian Buckle.
The Quartet is led by the leader of the Orchestra of Opera North David Greed, joined by the string section principals Katherine New, David Aspin and Jessica Burroughs.
The line-up is completed by Paul Miller (principal double bass) for Dvořák’s String Quintet No.2, a piece that marries a crystal-clear sonata opening with lively folk dance, lyrical songlike sections, and a final groundswell of melody that gives full voice to the bass.
|Antonín Dvořák||String Quintet in G Major No.2, Op 77|
|Franz Schubert||Piano Quintet in A Major ‘The Trout’, D. 667|
Described as ‘one of today’s most exciting new operatic voices’ (The Independent), South African soprano Pumeza Matshikiza released her debut album Voice of Hope in 2014 followed by Arias, with pieces by Puccini, Catalani, Ravel, Mozart and Fauré in May 2016.
She brings her exquisite lyric voice and emotional sensitivity to bear on Schumann’s vividly emotional Frauenliebe und leben, together with Strauss’s sublimely beautiful Four Last Songs.
I think I've found the new Maria Callas . . . What initially arrested me, and went on fascinating me, was not only the beauty of her singing, one of the loveliest lightish lyric sopranos I have heard in the flesh, but also her commitment to the role she was performing.
Australian pianist Piers Lane demonstrates his versatility and poetic best in a programme all about connections: Chopin idolised Bach and in turn inspired the Russian composers Tchaikovsky and Stravinsky.
Opening with Bach’s Prelude and Fugue in F sharp minor and a selection of Chopin’s best piano works, their probing and moving nature are mirrored in the forms used in Tchaikovsky’s rarely heard Six Pieces On A Single Theme. Stravinsky’s colourful Trois mouvements de Petrouchka bring the recital to a dazzling climax.
Lane is equally at home in solo, chamber and concerto repertoire. His concerto repertoire alone exceeds ninety-five works and has led to engagements with many of the world’s great orchestras and conductors, including five performances at the BBC Proms.
‘He dazzled us throughout not only with his virtuoso response but also with the poetry he found in the quieter variants’.
Classical Source on his performance of Rachmaninoff: Variations on a Theme of Chopin Op. 22
|Johann Sebastian Bach||Prelude and Fugue in F sharp minor, BWV 883|
|Frédéric Chopin||Impromptu No 2 in F sharp major
Mazurka in F minor, Op 68 No 4
Piano Sonata No. 2 in B♭ minor
|Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky||Six Pieces on a Single Theme, Op 21|
|Igor Stravinsky||Trois mouvements de Petrouchka|
22 Nov 2018
Howard Assembly Room
In association with Leeds Lieder
A selection of music on the subject of war, by composers from across the span of the major nations involved in the First World War including Butterworth, Gurney, Mahler, Fauré, Ives, Mussorgsky, Schumann, Wolf and Poulenc.
In the centenary year of the end of the Great War, this solo recital is performed by internationally acclaimed British baritone Christopher Maltman. Since winning the Lieder prize at the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition early in his career, he has gone from strength to strength, starring at the opening night of the 2015 BBC Proms.
Accompanied on piano by Leeds Lieder Director Joseph Middleton, Maltman performs 19th and 20th Century works mining the despair, tender poignancy and rawness of war, in songs including Schumann’s devastating Der Soldat, Finzi’s Channel Firing and Ivor Gurney’s deeply expressive Severn Meadows.
Maltman’s wide-ranging voice, offering a huge variety of colour and dynamics, sought out a new wealth of subtle meanings'
Fresh from their critically acclaimed soundtrack to the video game No Man’s Sky, experimental post-rock band 65daysofstatic continue their exploration of non-linear music.
Their latest work, Decomposition Theory employs algorithms and coding to build each performance. Using visuals to reveal the inner working of their music, no two performances will ever be the same, as the band sculpt and shape the procedurally-generated sounds in real time.
“Decomposition Theory is some small effort to imagine a space where music is no longer shaped in commodity forms…We are un-songing our songs and un-performing on stage.” — 65daysofstatic
Takes the idea of excitement and forward momentum from space travel and then blasts them at the listener with no let-up.
Drowned in Sound on No Man’s Sky: Music for an infinite universe
This sublime collaboration between two virtuoso musicians - Welsh harpist Catrin Finch and Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita - delivers a stunning adventure in world-class musicianship. Following the huge success of their debut release Clychau Dibon back in 2013, their long-awaited second album Soar launches in April 2018.
Drawing on the bardic traditions of both Wales and West Africa, the album takes flight on the wings of the osprey, the magnificent bird of prey recently returned to Wales after centuries of absence, which makes its annual 3,000-mile migration from the coasts of West Africa to the estuaries of Wales.
An amazing live experience, they are 'intricate, ethereal and entrancing, an elaborate pas-de-deux... remarkable' (UNCUT Magazine).
This, I suspect, will be remembered as one of the classic concerts of the year
Robin Denselow, The Guardian