Longborough Festival Opera have announced four productions across the summer in 2022, featuring everything from the earliest surviving opera written to a woman to a brand new work by composer Freya Waley-Cohen. Based in the village of Longborough in nearby Cotswolds, Gloucester
Fully staged performances return for Siegfried in 2022. The cycle continues with Götterdämmerung in 2023, building to the full cycle of Der Ring des Nibelungen in 2024.
All productions in the cycle are created especially for Longborough by Amy Lane, Artistic Director of Copenhagen Opera Festival, and Longborough Music Director and eminent Wagnerian Anthony Negus.
“With Siegfried we return to fully-staged Wagner and take another step on our journey towards the Ring cycle with this remarkably funny and exuberant third instalment of Wagner’s cycle ” – Polly Graham, Artistic Director
Korngold Die tote Stadt
The 2022 season continues with a dramatised concert production of Korngold’s youthful drama of desire, Die tote Stadt, in what will be the composer’s 125th anniversary year. Director Carmen Jakobi and acclaimed conductor Justin Brown offer a new take on this rarely performed work. Die tote Stadt will feature the Longborough Youth Chorus, following their performance in The Cunning Little Vixen in the 2021 season.
“It’s incredible how the 23-yr-old Korngold was able to assimilate the latest trends, particularly Puccini and Strauss, almost outdoing them with his sense of colour and gift for beautiful melody, while already demonstrating an unmistakeable personal voice and idiom. The music is at once seductive, charming and subtly complex, providing exciting challenges for orchestra and singers alike. The only challenge for the audience is to resist falling under its spell!” – Justin Brown, Conducto
Director Mathilde Lopez returns to Longborough following her production of Cavalli’s La Calisto in 2019 (“a punky take on a Baroque masterpiece” – **** The Times).
Lopez directs what promises to be a radical take on Bizet’s tale of freedom, passion and high drama, with the Longborough Festival Orchestra under the baton of Jeremy Silver. Margaret Plummer makes her Longborough debut in the title role, with Peter Gijsbertsen (La traviata 2018) as Don José, and featuring the Longborough Youth Chorus.
“The children are superb; but they would be, wouldn’t they?” – **** The Arts Desk, review of Longborough Youth Chorus in The Cunning Little Vixen, 2021.
Waley-Cohen Spell Book
Caccini La liberazione di Ruggiero dall’isola d’Alcina
Longborough’s Emerging Artist programme gives a vital opportunity to singers at the beginning of their careers. In 2022 audiences are treated to a double bill of love, freedom and magic.
Members of the Emerging Artists ensemble offer the first complete staging of Freya Waley-Cohen’s Spell Book, a dramatic song cycle inspired by the composer’s encounter with Rebecca Tamás’ collection of poems, WITCH.
“The women of Freya’s songs create spells that celebrate hard won freedoms, as well as spells that lay out the divisions and injustices yet to be overcome. A perfect project for a new generation of performers.” – Polly Graham, Artistic Director
Following this is a performance of Francesca Caccini’s La liberazione di Ruggiero dall’isola d’Alcina, the earliest surviving opera written by a female composer. With a story from Ariosto’s Orlando Furioso, La liberazione di Ruggiero will be performed in a new arrangement by conductor Yshani Perinpanayagam, featuring CHROMA Ensemble and directed by Jenny Ogilvie.