Opera North today announces its 2021/22 season with five new productions opening at the Leeds Grand Theatre before touring to theatres and concert halls across the North of England. Tickets for all performances will go on sale in June with audience capacities in line with government guidelines:

  • The season opens with the Company’s first new Carmen (Bizet)in over a decade conducted by Garry Walker [pictured] in his first production as Opera North’s new Music Director, and directed by Edward DickChrystal E. Williams takes on the title role alongside Antoine Bélanger as Don José. 
  • A double-bill of works by Bernstein sees a revival of Trouble in Tahiti paired with a new production of West Side Story Symphonic Dances in collaboration with Phoenix Dance Theatre. Antony Hermus conducts.
  • Joining Carmen for Winter 2022 is a new production of Rigoletto (Verdi) directed by British Nigerian actor/director Femi Elufowoju Jr. in his operatic debut. Garry Walker conducts a cast including Eric Greene in the title role, Sir Willard White as Count Monterone, Roman Arndt as the Duke of Mantua and Jasmine Habersham as Gilda.
  • The Winter season also sees a new production of Handel’s Alcina, Opera North’s first environmentally sustainable production conducted by Laurence Cummings and directed by Tim Albery, with Máire Flavin as Alcina and Patrick Terry as Ruggiero. 
  • A concert staging of Wagner’s Parsifal completes the year, opening at Leeds Grand Theatre in June before touring to concert halls across the country. Richard Farnes returns to Opera North to conduct a stellar cast including Brindley Sherratt as Gurnemanz and Toby Spence as Parsifal, both in role debuts. 
  • This October will also see the reopening of the Howard Assembly Room, Opera North’s eclectic performance venue which showcases top international touring artists from a diverse range of genres, classical recitals, chamber opera, films, talks, installations and family events. Artists already confirmed for the reopening season include Courtney Pine and award-winning pianist Zoe Rahman, Cuban pianist Omar Sosa with Senegalese kora master Seckou KeitaLeveret, and Richard Dawson.

The coming months will also see the Company’s £18m redevelopment of its city centre home, the Howard Opera Centre, enter its final stages. A new Making Music campaign has been launched today to drive donations to complete the project and fill the new spaces with music. The names of Making Music supporters will become part of a new installation symbolising a musical score. Wrapping around the central staircase in the new glass atrium, the installation will celebrate the making of music in the heart of the building: www.operanorth.co.uk/support-us/making-music/