Birmingham Opera Company's new commission
Life is a Dream - World premiere 21st March 2012
Venue: Argyle Works, Great Barr Street, Birmingham B9 4EX
Performances: 21st/23rd/24th/27th/28th/30th/31st March 2012 at 7.30pm
It's been a dream for Birmingham Opera Company for some time now and in March we will live the dream when our new opera receives its world premiere. Composer, Jonathan Dove and writer, Alasdair Middleton have created a brand new, full length opera and they've used a legendary play by 17th century Spanish Playwright, Calderón.
In November a group of people gathered in one of Birmingham Royal Ballet's studios to hear the first complete playthrough of the opera with Jonathan at the piano singing all the parts. In the room were a group of our volunteers who have been tracking the whole process ove
nearly two years. They have acted as sounding boards and observers as discussions about what the opera should be about got underway. How do you choose a subject or story? Over the two years Jonathan and Alasdair have had access to a unique focus group who have been actively involved in testing how the opera has developed. And now they are close to seeing how the whole project will come to fruition - and they'll be part of that too as members of the Birmingham cast in the production.
"It's been a real privilege to have been there all the way through - I'm so excited about singing it now - the tunes are going round my head" Barbara Copson - Tracker & Chorus Member
An truly impressive team has been assembled for this project led by Artistic Director, Graham Vick. Samal Blak, our designer for Othello and a Linbury Prize Award winner joins us again. William Lacey also returns to conduct having forged upwards in his career to be Kapellmeister at Leipzig Opera. We welcome back the distinguished leading British tenor, Paul Nilon as the King and he is joined by other Birmingham Opera Company artists, Wendy Dawn Thompson (mezzo), Keel Watson (bass), Donna Bateman (soprano). They'll be joined by American tenor, Joseph Guyton who played Cassio in Othello and has been cutting a swathe as a finalist in Germany's X Factor - click here to see the video! And playing the role of Segismund is American baritone, Eric Greene making his debut with Birmingham Opera Company.