Chorus! | Welsh National Opera

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SummaryBack to top

Saturday, February 7, 2015 - Wednesday, April 8, 2015

New Production

Chorus! is a fully staged extravaganza of some of opera's greatest moments. The talents of soprano Lesley Garrett, centre stage with the stunning WNO Chorus, make this a uniquely entwined and magnificent spectacle.

Lesley's natural rapport with an audience reaches far beyond the opera house. Her superb voice, in union with the Chorus, brings every song to life in a delightful cocktail of music and performance.

Chorus! features over 20 works, including Il trovatore, Madam Butterfly, The Pirates of Penzance and Peter Grimes. With moments of wonder, humour and reflection seasoned operagoers will be reminded why they fell in love with it in the first place. Newcomers to the genre will be left wanting more.

  • Running time approximately two hours including one interval
  • Sung in various languages with surtitles in English and Welsh
  • Please note that strobe lighting will feature in the production


Cast & CreativeBack to top

Conductor Alexander Martin
Director David Pountney
Designer Johan Engels
Associate Set Designer Matthew Rees

Lighting Designer Ian Jones
Choreographer Denni Sayers
Staff Director Pamela Recinella
Musical preparation David Doidge, Genesis Trainee Repetiteur
Stage Manager Jenni Price
Production Manager Robert Pagett

Starring Lesley Garrett

WNO Chorus
Soprano Meriel Andrew, Anitra Blaxhall, Megan Llewellyn DorkeStephanie Edwards, Paula Greenwood, Claire Hampton, Fiona HarrisonRosie Hay, Emma Mary Llewellyn, Stacey Wheeler

Mezzo-soprano Amanda Baldwin, Neda BizzarriJessica Handley Greaves, Helen Greenaway, Carolyn JacksonHelen Jarmany, Sian Meinir, Nicola Morgan, Sarah Pope, Louise Ratcliffe

Tenor Simon Crosby Buttle, Michael Clifton-Thompson, Paul GytonPhilip Lloyd Holtam, Howard Kirk, Gareth Lloyd, Huw LlywelynRichard Monk, Cárthaigh Quill, Joe Roche 

Bass Julian Boyce, Laurence Cole, Jasey Hall, Philip Lloyd-EvansMartin Lloyd, Alastair Moore, George Newton-Fitzgerald, Jack O’KellyOwen Webb, Stephen Wells

Dancer Chris Tudor

StoryBack to top

Part One

War and Peace Epigraph Music Prokofiev Libretto Mendelson & Prokofiev

Peter Grimes Who holds himself apart Music Britten Libretto Slater

The Flying Dutchman Spinning chorus Music and Libretto Wagner

Macbeth Murderers’ chorus Music Verdi Libretto Piave

Il trovatore Anvil chorus Music Verdi Libretto Cammarano

La forza del destino Rataplan Music Verdi Libretto Piave Preziosilla Lesley Garrett

The Fairy Queen Hush, no more Music Purcell Libretto anon. after Shakespeare Sleep Martin Lloyd

Madam Butterfly Humming chorus Music Puccini Libretto Giacosa & Illica

The Rake’s Progress With air commanding Music Stravinsky Libretto Auden & Kallman

The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny Alabama song Music Weill Libretto Brecht Jenny Lesley Garrett

Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk Police scene Music Shostakovich Libretto Preis & Shostakovich Translation David Pountney Chief of Police Stephen Wells

Carmen Cigarette chorus Music Bizet Libretto Meilhac & Halévy

The Pirates of Penzance A policeman’s lot Music Sullivan Libretto Gilbert Sergeant Stephen Wells

The Tales of Hoffmann Barcarolle Music Offenbach Libretto Barbier & Carré Lesley Garrett

The Cunning Little Vixen Wedding scene Music and Libretto Janáček


Part Two

Carmen Les voici Music Bizet Libretto Meilhac & Halévy

The Pirates of Penzance With cat-like tread Music Sullivan Libretto Gilbert Samuel George Newton-Fitzgerald

Macbeth Witches’ chorus Music Verdi Libretto Maffei & Piave

La forza del destino La vergine degli angeli Music Verdi Libretto Piave Leonora Lesley Garrett

Messiah Hallelujah chorus Music Handel Text Jennens

Panis angelicus
Music Franck Text Aquinas Lesley Garrett

Khovanshchina Wailing chorus Music Musorgsky Libretto Musorgsky & Stasov Translation Carol Borah Kelly Khovansky Alastair Moore Kuzka Simon Crosby Buttle Scribe Michael Clifton-Thompson

Nabucco Va, pensiero Music Verdi Libretto Solera

Man of La Mancha The Impossible Dream Music Leigh (arr. Bateman) Lyrics Darion Lesley Garrett

Candide Make our garden grow Music Bernstein Lyrics Bernstein, Hellman, Latouche, Parker, Sondheim, Wheeler & Wilbur Cunegonde Lesley Garrett Candide Howard Kirk

Excerpts from War and Peace, Peter Grimes, The Rake’s Progress, Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Khovanshchina and Candide by permission of Boosey and Hawkes Music Publishers Limited; excerpt from The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny by arrangement with European American Music

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Free EventsBack to top

Pre-performance Concert

This short concert is the perfect curtain raiser to the main performance.

Main Foyer, WMC, 22 February 2.30pm

Pre-performance Talks

Pre-performance talks are free and can be booked at the same time you book your opera tickets.

Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff
Saturday 7 & 14 February 6.15pm; Sunday 22 February 3pm

Birmingham Hippodrome
Wednesday 4 March 6.15pm

Venue Cymru, Llandudno
Wednesday 11 March 3pm & 5.45pm

Milton Keynes Theatre
Wednesday 18 March 5.45pm

Mayflower Theatre, Southampton
Wednesday 25 March 5.45pm

Theatre Royal Plymouth
Tuesday 31 March 6pm

Bristol Hippodrome
Wednesday 8 April 5.45pm