Thursday 2 June 2022

Will Todd's Migrations reaches the stage at Welsh National Opera later this month

The premiere of Will Todd's new opera Migrations has been a long time in coming. Planned for 2020, the project is finally coming to fruition at the end of this month when Welsh National Opera gives the work's premiere at the Millennium Centre on 29 June 2022. Conducted by Matthew Kofi Waldren and directed by David Pountney, Migrations is a complex, large-scale work which looks at stories of migration by weaving together six different narratives, each told by a different librettist and each inspired by real life experiences.

Sir David Pountney worked with writers Shreya Sen Handley, Edson Burton and Miles Chambers, Eric Ngalle Charles, and Sarah Woods to create the libretto, each writer or writing partnership responsible for one strand. The migration stories told are diverse, the Pilgrims on The Mayflower settling in America, the 'first nation' Cree people, Afro-Caribbean slaves in the 18th century, the migration of birds, refugees attending an English lesson and Indian doctors in the NHS in the 1960s.

Will Todd's music will reflect this diversity of stories with a mix of musical styles to tell each story, from classical music to epic cinema and musical theatre styles and a collaboration with sitar player Jasdeep Singh Degun on the music for story of the Indian doctors in the NHS. 

But the opera is not just a selection of engaging narratives. The desire to broaden our horizons is a natural one, but for many, it is a necessity to improve on circumstances, and the stories explore how the result of such migrations often have unintended consequences.

Migrations is an ambitious, large-scale piece involving over 100 performers including Tom Randle, Meeta Raval, David Shipley and Peter Brathwaite amongst other artists, along with the Bristol-based Renewal Choir Community Chorus, a Bollywood Ensemble and a children’s chorus including members of WNO’s Youth Opera, joining the forces of Welsh National Opera’s Orchestra and Chorus. 

The opera is also part of a five-year partnership with the Welsh Refugee Council working with groups in the community through composition, music and performance projects.

After its performances in Cardiff in June and July 2022, there are further performances in Cardiff, Llandudno, Plymouth, Birmingham and Southampton in the Autumn.

Full details from the WNO website.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Popular Posts this month