Thursday, 7 May 2015

Personal thoughts about Opera North's 2015/16 Season

Photo Credit: Opera North

I had the privilege attending Opera North's Season Launch in Leeds to learn more about the new opera season for 2015/16.  A proud supporter of Opera North I was curious what will be featured in their forthcoming repertoire.  Announcement was made earlier in day so I know by then what is coming our way to the stage.

Richard Mantle,Opera North's General Director,opened the launch, gave a company update and shared exactly an update of works with some musical highlights sung from the new programme by two Opera North guest artists.

Autumn 2015

The season will host Cole Porter's Kiss Me Kate, directed by Jo Davies and co-produced with Welsh National Opera.  There are some traditional opera greats such as Rossini's The Barber of Seville and Janacek's Jenufa.

The New Year and Spring 2016

There's Giordano's Andrea Chenier, which is an opera based on the French Revolution and the story is told through the eyes of an artist.  Some will enjoy the traditional operas of Mozart's Cosi Fan Tutte and Donizetti's L'eliser d'amore. A new commissioned chamber opera, Pleasure, composed by Mark Simpson and written by Melanie Challenger, is a story about Val who works in a gay night club and a young man - which upon their meeting brings a dramatic turn of emotions and actions. One of the highlights of the season must be Into The Woods, a Sondheim musical produced jointly with West Yorkshire Playhouse. Two of my favourite directors, James Brining and David Charles Abel, will lead this exciting production. It's a definitely a must see!


Opera North has a commendable outreach programme which Mantle shared with us.  The company is keen to attract a diverse range of audiences to the operas and involve schools and communities regionally. 

Wagner's The Ring

Not forgetting Wagner fans; there is The Ring which journey  will come full circle in Summer 2016 with a celebratory programme.

I look forward to seeing some Opera North performances during 2015/16 and hopefully illness won't get the better of me as I've had to miss two operas last season!

Dawn Smallwood
7th May 2015

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