Bristol Community Choir Workshop

22 June 2016

This Saturday (25 June), Scottish Opera’s Chorus Master, Oliver Rundell, hosts a vocal workshop with the Bristol Hippodrome Community Choir ahead of our final performance of The Mikado in Bristol.


This one-off workshop, taking place from 10.30-11.30am, kicks off with some warm-up games and breathing exercises, before the choir tackles extracts from The Mikado, one of Gilbert and Sullivan’s most popular comic operas.


Emily Mitchell, a chorus member from our production, will attend the workshop to offer advice to the choristers, and even perform a song or two from the show.


Our vibrant production of The Mikado opens at the Bristol Hippodrome tonight and runs until Saturday, before going on to the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton, where the extensive 8 venue UK tour comes to an end.


For more information on this production, click here.


Sunday Herald Culture Awards

15 June 2016

Scottish Opera has been shortlisted for the Sunday Herald Culture Awards 2016 in the Best Musical Group and Best Musical Artist categories.


The Company itself has been shortlisted in the Best Musical Group category, with composer-librettist duo Stuart MacRae and Louise Welsh shortlisted in the Best Musical Artist category for Scottish Opera’s The Devil Inside earlier this year. Their hugely successful Scottish Opera partnership has also resulted in Remembrance Day (2008) for our Five:15 Operas Made in Scotland project and the South Bank Sky Arts Award-winning Ghost Patrol (2012).


The Sunday Herald Culture Awards is a major new awards event celebrating the best of Scotland's world-class artistic scene. A panel of leading names from the creative world will choose the best of Scotland's musicians, actors, visual artists, dancers, writers and events to recognise the national and international success being achieved by artists across all genres.


The judges include author and playwright Alan Bissett, television and stage actor David Hayman, singer songwriter Roddy Woomble and leading graphic designer and creative director at Graven, Janice Kirkpatrick OBE. The judging panel will be chaired by Sunday Herald editor and author Neil Mackay.


The finalists will be formally announced in the Sunday Herald this weekend (19 June), with the awards presented at a gala evening on Thursday 7 July at SWG3 in Glasgow.


Co-commission opens in Toronto

1 June 2016

A brand new opera co-commissioned by Scottish Opera and Tapestry Opera, with music by Scottish Opera’s former Composer in Residence Gareth Williams, had its world premiere in Toronto on Saturday (28 May).


Rocking Horse Winner, a modern adaptation of D.H. Lawrence’s short story by Edinburgh-based composer Gareth Williams and Canadian librettist Anna Chatterton, will run at the Berkeley Street Theatre in Toronto until Saturday (4 June).


Directed by Tapestry Opera’s Artistic Director Michael Mori, Rocking Horse Winner explores the relationship between Paul, a young man with developmental challenges, and his emotionally distant mother. Paul becomes dangerously obsessed with solving the “bad luck” of his family in order to win his mother’s love. His pursuit awakens a strange magic that connects him to luck, but also to powerful voices only he can hear.


Scottish Opera and Tapestry Opera have enjoyed an extremely productive relationship over the past five years. Their international partnership has resulted in numerous artistic exchanges and collaborations, including the world premiere of The Devil Inside at the beginning of this year.


Opera Sparks

27 May 2016

A free introductory workshop for those wishing to learn more about our new Opera Sparks competition will take place in Glasgow on 31 May.

Opera Sparks 2018 is a competition to commission three new short operas - to be performed by Scottish Opera’s youth company, Connect, in celebration of its 10th anniversary in 2018. Open to those aged 26 and under who are Scottish or based in Scotland, the three winning composer/librettist partnerships will be awarded a cash prize of £3,500, and also receive mentoring support from members of the judging panel throughout the creative process.


The introductory workshop at Theatre Royal Glasgow will provide an opportunity for composers and writers to ask questions, make new contacts and potentially form new working partnerships. Chris Gray (Director of Connect Company) will give an introduction to Connect, the people involved and the work they do, and composer Karen MacIver will give an insight into the world of composing and writing for opera, and discuss the next stages of the project.


For more information on our Opera Sparks 2018 competition, click here


Prize for former Emerging Artist

26 May 2016

Welsh mezzo-soprano Sioned Gwen Davies, a former Scottish Opera Emerging Artist, has won the Welsh Singers Competition 2016.


The final of the competition, which took place last night (Wednesday 25 May) at St David's Hall in Cardiff, included performances from all five finalists: mezzo-soprano Eirlys Myfanwy, tenor Trystan Llyr Griffiths (Così fan tutte 2015), countertenor Kieron-Connor Valentine and tenor Samuel Furness (Jenufa 2015). The distinguished judging panel included Dame Anne Murray, Ryland Davies, Rebecca Evans, Julian Smith and Sir Thomas Allen.


After performing the role of Kate in Scottish Opera’s The Pirates of Penzance (2013), Sioned was invited to join the Company as an Emerging Artist, where she took on the roles of Eduige in Rodelinda (2013) and the Third Witch in Macbeth (2014). Sioned made a welcome return to Scottish Opera this Season as the Third Nymph in Rusalka (2016) and currently Pitti-Sing in our new production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado.


Sioned will now go on to represent Wales in BBC Cardiff Singer of the World 2017.


HMS Pinafore Recording Now Available

20 May 2016

Scottish Opera’s live performance of Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore, recorded at last year’s Edinburgh International Festival by Linn Records, is now available.


The one-off, sold-out concert performance captured the wit and fun of Gilbert & Sullivan's HMS Pinafore and featured a sterling cast. Renowned English tenors John Mark Ainsley and Toby Spence took on the roles of Admiral Porter and Ralph, with Andrew Foster-Williams singing Captain Corcoran, comedy legend Tim Brooke-Taylor narrating the seafaring romp, and Richard Egarr conducting The Orchestra of Scottish Opera.


Three Weeks said of the performance: ‘Wittily narrated by Tim Brooke Taylor, this hilarious piece was sung and acted wonderfully; although frothily accessible, the music is operatic in style and ambition. Conductor Richard Egarr created much more than a concert performance here.’


For more details or to order a copy, click here.


Children's Roles Up For Grabs in The Marriage of Figaro

16 May 2016

Scottish Opera is looking for 3 confident girls aged between 8 and 11, and between 4 and 5 feet tall, to appear in our Autumn production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro.


These non-singing roles offer aspiring young performers the opportunity to take part in a much-loved production of one of Mozart’s most famous operas.


Children must be available from Monday 5 September to Saturday 19 November 2016 inclusive for all rehearsals in Glasgow and all performances in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Inverness, as well as a further touring week from Wednesday 4 to Saturday 7 January 2017 inclusive.


The deadline for applications is Thursday 9 June. Group auditions will be held on the evenings of Monday 13 and Tuesday 14 June. Each session can accommodate a maximum of 15 children and will take the form of a short workshop.


For more information and details on how to book an audition place, click here.


Scottish Opera’s Hit Production of Don Pasquale Lands in Florida

9 May 2016

Scottish Opera’s critically acclaimed 2014 production of Donizetti’s Don Pasquale opened in Florida on Saturday 7 May.


Florida Grand Opera is presenting this comedic masterpiece at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County from 7 to 14 May 2016.


The in-demand director-designer duo of Renaud Doucet and André Barbe created this production in their typical colorful and quirky style, though South Florida audiences will experience a fresh perspective with a different cast, conductor and orchestra bringing the production to life.


Scottish Opera audiences can look forward to another Doucet and Barbe creation in our 2016/17 Season, as they take on Puccini’s La bohème.


To read more about our upcoming production of La bohème, click here.


Scottish Opera Wins NAFS Emcees Award

6 May 2016

Scottish Opera takes home The Richmond Associates Award for Best Campaign over £100,000 at The National Arts Fundraising School’s Emcees Arts & Culture Awards for Excellence in Fundraising 2016.


From 200 submissions across the UK and a shortlist of five, The Company’s Building for the Future campaign scooped the award at a ceremony in London’s Science Museum on Thursday 5 May.


The Emcees judges said, ‘Scottish Opera showed some really lovely touches in exceeding the target for their capital campaign. This included Scottish Opera’s carpentry team making handmade pens for Major Donors from the same wood and leather used in theatre’.


The awards were created to recognise best practice in arts and culture fundraising and to celebrate the achievements of organisations within the UK sector over the last year.


Scottish Opera Announces 2016/17 Season

27 April 2016

In this rich and diverse 2016/17 Season, the first to be announced since Stuart Stratford formally took up post as Music Director, Scottish Opera continues to develop its strong creative relationships and partnerships, presenting seven fully staged productions and four operas in concert.


Full details are on our website, but the highlights include:


● New productions of Pelléas and Mélisande, Bluebeard’s Castle, La bohème and The Elixir of Love
Sir Thomas Allen’s hit production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro opens the Season
● World premiere of The 8th Door, a specially devised companion piece to Bluebeard’s Castle created by Vanishing Point’s Matthew Lenton and Scottish Opera’s Composer in Residence Lliam Paterson
● Scottish premieres of Philip Glass’s The Trial and Giacomo Puccini’s Le Villi
● Four operas in concert presented in The Sunday Series at Theatre Royal Glasgow, featuring early and rarely-performed works by masters of operatic writing
● Renowned director Sir David McVicar and director/designer team Renaud Doucet and André Barbe return
● Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love – in a new arrangement for orchestral quintet – tours to 17 venues around Scotland and Opera Highlights takes to 38 the total number of venues visited
● The season also includes a world premiere of The Little White Town of Never Weary; Kurt Weill’s Down in the Valley and Der Jasager, and Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas by Scottish Opera’s Connect Company; the Pop-up Opera Roadshow; a Primary Schools Tour of The Tale o’ Tam o’ Shanter; Opera Unwrapped and much more.


For a more detailed overview of what’s coming up at Scottish Opera, see the full press release here.