Thursday, 17 January 2013

Moses und Aron - WNO joins ROH

Great news! The Royal Opera House is teaming up with the Welsh National Opera. Starting summer 2014, the WNO will have a residency in London at the ROH. First production will be Schoenberg Moses und Aron which in  itself will be a big event. Then, Richard Ayres’s Peter Pan in 2015 and a new main stage commission in 2016 to mark WNO’s 70th anniversary.

As I've said before, this is a sensible rationalization of opera resources throughout the country. Co-operation rather than fragmentation means companies get greater coverage. Diversifying also preserves the individuality of different houses. Everyone benefits, especially audiences who get better choice. Kaspar Holten and Antonio Pappano are on to a good thing, building upon links with Music Theatre Wales, Scottish Opera, etc etc. The arrangements the ROH had with the Bolshoi and Russian comapnies in the past weren't well received, but WNO is a different prospect.  See my post on WNO's British Firsts series here which mentions Richard Ayres Peter Pan (Cardiff for 2015  as well as ROH) and Unsuk Chin's Alice in Wonderland (Cardiff  2017, and ROH same year, soon after)

WNO’s Chief Executive and Artistic Director David Poutney said:
‘We are thrilled to have the chance to present over the next three years some of our most ambitious programming within the prestigious surroundings of the Royal Opera House – a superb platform for WNO’s work and an enrichment of the ROH repertory. This three-year programme creates artistic gains for both organizations, which are keen to affirm the importance of artistic collaboration and ambition in a time of financial stress’
Director of The Royal Opera Kasper Holten commented:
‘In this era, collaboration is key, and I believe that the more opera companies can collaborate and work together, the stronger case we will all be able to make for opera – and the wider choice of repertory we will be able to offer. I am thrilled about David’s exciting plans for WNO over the next few years, and we are very happy to be able to showcase some of the company’s most exciting projects in three consecutive years.’

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