We are delighted to be today, 25 October 2019, participating in World Opera Day, shining a light on Opera’s contribution to wellbeing. Opera Europa, OPERA America and Ópera Latinoamérica join together with encouragements from UNESCO and the International Theatre Institute to remind people of the power of creativity and artistic expression found within this artform.
On this special day we want to shout about the work we do across all of Scottish Opera. We are celebrating on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels all day, from audience feedback to beautiful photos and more details about the programmes which support our singers and audiences.
Alongside our ninth revival of Anthony Besch’s production of Tosca, we are presenting three Dementia Friendly performances, in Glasgow, Edinburgh and, for the first time, Aberdeen. These fully-staged, specially created versions of the show offer a more relaxed opera experience. A narrator joins the cast of Tosca, and the Orchestra of Scottish Opera to lead audiences through a shortened version of the show.
Our Emerging Artist’s programme is in its tenth year. We are joined this year by Baritones Arthur Bruce and Mark Nathan, Soprano Charlie Drummond, Repetiteur Michael Papadopoulous, Costume Trainee Jasmine Clark and, for the first time Emerging Artist Associate Producer Lucy Walters. Samuel Bordoli returns as our Composer in Residence. This World Opera Day, our three singers are in recital at the National Museum Scotland: Wild and Majestic: An evening with Scottish Opera.
Over on Twitter, we are asking our fans and supporters to use the hashtag #OperaMattersToMe and tell us what they love about this artform, from the music to the drama to the incredible talent shown not just onstage but behind the scenes. We will also be revealing some backstage photos taken during our recent Tosca dress rehearsal by former Emerging Artist Nadine Boyd, highlighting the work done by all of our behind the scenes staff.
25 October was chosen to celebrate World Opera Day as it is the birthday of Georges Bizet and Johann Strauss II, composers of possibly the world’s most famous opera and operetta. It is also the starting week of OPERA America’s 50th anniversary celebration, and the central day of Opera Europa’s autumn conference, whose theme for 2019 is Building Bridges.
Scottish Opera General Director Alex Reedijk said: “World Opera Day is a fantastic opportunity to share the work we do all over Scotland. Scottish Opera visits over 50 venues around the country each Season, and, alongside our acclaimed main-stage productions, creates work for our littlest audiences aged 6 months and up with our operas for babies and toddlers, Bambino and Fox-tot!, through to our Dementia Friendly performances and Memory Spinners. The wellbeing of the community we serve is at the heart of what we do and it is a special joy to celebrate this.”