Sunday, 14 August 2022

Garsington to add a fourth opera in 2017

THE Garsington Opera festival at Wormsley is to extend from six to eight weeks next year

THE Garsington Opera festival at Wormsley is to extend from six to eight weeks next year — running from June 1 to July 30.

The main season will expand from three to four opera productions each year, and 2017 will see the start of a partnership with the Philharmonia Orchestra.

Next year will also see the addition of a large-scale newly commissioned community opera.

The festival will open with a new production of Handel’s Semele, to be conducted by Jonathan Cohen with Annilese Miskimmon directing.

The Philharmonia Orchestra will be joining for a new production of Pelléas et Mélisande with conductor Jac van Steen and director Michael Boyd.

John Cox’s celebrated production of Le nozze di Figaro will be recreated for the Wormsley stage, conducted by Douglas Boyd, and Martin Duncan’s acclaimed production of Rossini’s Il turco in Italia will be conducted by David Parry.

Silver Birch, a new commission by composer Roxanna Panufnik and librettist Jessica Duchen, uniting professional artists with 170 members of the local community, will be presented by Garsington Opera’s Learning and Participation programme. It will be conducted by Douglas Boyd and directed by Karen Gillingham.

Meanwhile, with this year’s festival in full flow, BBC Arts Online is enabling Garsington Opera to reach a wider audience.

Short clips of the 2015 production of Così fan tutte are now available to view at

Later this month, Garsington’s acclaimed production of Eugene Onegin — currently in repertoire and reviewed in last week’s Henley Standard — will be available.

Eugene Onegin will be screened to Skegness (July 2), Ramsgate (July 23), Bridgewater (August 20) and Grimsby (September 30) as part of the Garsington Opera for All programme.

In each location a large-scale programme of education and outreach work is firmly integrated with the digital free public screenings and provides ground breaking opportunities for communities to be involved in creating, learning about, and performing opera.

Opera for All is a three-year partnership project between Garsington Opera, the charitable trust Magna Vitae, and the Coastal Communities Alliance, and is supported by Arts Council England’s Strategic Touring Fund.

Nicola Creed, executive director of Garsington Opera said: “We are delighted to be making opera available free of charge potentially to thousands of people. This is an important addition to our outreach programme and we are thrilled to be launching opera from Wormsley on BBC Arts Online.”

For more on Opera for All, visit

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