Opera Double Bill Will Open Yorkshire’s Leading Classical Music Festival

Haydn comes to St Andrews Church Aldborough on 15th June
May 18, 2023

A leading fixture on the classical music calendar, the Northern Aldborough Festival, opens with a rare opera double bill on 15 June 2023

The festival, which runs across ten days in the bucolic North Yorkshire village, offers audiences the chance to experience performances normally seen on cosmopolitan stages, in a rural village setting.

Haydn’s comedies, The Diva and The Apothecary, will be presented by the nationally-renowned Bampton Classical Opera, celebrated for breathing new life into lesser-known works.

Jeremy Gray from Bampton Classical Opera, who is Stage Director for the show, says: “Bampton Classical Opera has taken a lead in presenting Haydn’s neglected operas to new audiences and has staged six with great success, including last season’s much-praised production of 'Fool Moon' (Il mondo della luna).”

The Diva is a light and lively comedy about a young scheming soprano getting the better of her music teacher.

The Apothecary, also a comedy, stirs up a frothy mixture of jealousy and trickery in a seductive musical farce of two love rivals.

Jeremy adds: “The Diva and The Apothecary are Haydn’s earliest surviving performable operas. With their simple and witty plots, they demonstrate the composer’s delight in exploring bizarre romantic situations and creating affectionately humorous music.”

Guy Beynon (Short Round Productions)

The cast includes light tenor Guy Beynon, a graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music, who is currently studying for a Masters at the Royal Academy of Music, and tenor Henry Ross, a Royal Academy graduate who has made his debut at Wigmore Hall, and has a concert repertoire including Bach, Handel, and Haydn.  

The award-winning British soprano Iúnó Connolly also stars. She has performed at venues including the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and English National Opera. The cast also features soprano Madeline Robinson, who studied at the Guildhall School of Music, and has performed with Opera Holland Park, Opera South and many more, and has been nominated for an Off West End Award.

Conductor, Mark Austin, was a finalist in the Chicago Symphony Solti Conducting Competition and was elected Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in 2019. He made his debut at the Royal Opera, and has conducted orchestras including Britten Sinfonia, Orchestre de chambre de Paris, and Civic Orchestra of Chicago.

Madeline Robinson

Bampton Classical Opera have received high praise. Opera Now said they were,“Britain’s unchallenged champion of 18th-century opera.” The Spectator hailed them as “giddily exciting, propelled by wit, charm, and bags of joy.”

A charity, the Northern Aldborough Festival’s core aim is to bring exceptional music to new audiences in rural locations where it would not normally be heard.

Now in its 29th year, the Northern Aldborough Festival has built its reputation on delivering high quality music and talks to rural audiences. The festival also welcomes Leeds International Piano Competition winner, Sunwook Kim, the BBC Young Musician of the Year (brass), trumpet-player Matilda Lloyd, the Armonico Consort performing Monteverdi’s Vespers, and the award-winning jazz ensemble, The Tim Kliphuis Sextet.

This year also features the inaugural New Voices Competition, a major new nationwide hunt for the best classical vocal talent, with a judging panel headed by one of Britain’s leading sopranos, Dame Felicity Lott, and a prize fund of £7k.

The Diva and The Apothecary (Haydn) A double bill of comedies is on Thursday, 15th June 2023, 6.30pm at St Andrew’s Church, Aldborough. To book CLICK HERE