Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Left Bank Opera Festival 2017

Thomas Arne's Alfred at the Left Bank Opera Festival 2017
The Leeds multidisciplinary arts venue Left Bank Leeds and the Northern Opera Group are joining forces to present Left Bank Opera Festival 2017, 29 to 31 August 2017 at Left Bank Leeds. The festival is taking English opera as its theme and not only will there be a production of Benjamin Britten's Albert Herring (presented by York-based Aspect Opera who are performing in Leeds for the first time) but there is a new production by Northern Opera Group of Thomas Arne's Alfred conducted by Christopher Pelly. Surrounding the opera performances are a host of events which look in greater detail at Alfred and at the emergence of English opera in the 18th century.

Arne's Alfred (best known for its finale, 'Rule Britannia') started out life as a masque premiered at Cliveden (then the country home of Frederick, Prince of Wales) to celebrate the accession of George I and the birthday of Princess Augusta in 1740. Arne later developed the piece into an oratorio and finally into an opera. The performers at the first performance in 1740 were Thomas Lowe, Kitty Clive and Susannah Maria Cibber, all associated with Handel's oratorio performances.

Full details from the Northern Opera Group's website.

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