Rhondda Rips It Up! | Welsh National Opera

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Thursday, June 7, 2018 - Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Rhondda Rips It Up! will premiere at The Riverfront, Newport in Newport on 7 June. 

My Ladies, Lords and Gentlemen! WNO cordially invites you to the World Premiere of the rip-roaring, uproarious musical comedy Rhondda Rips It Up!

This tongue in cheek entertainment has been created for your delectation by the illustrious Ms Elena Langer (composer and suffragette) and the inimitable Ms Emma Jenkins (librettist and suffragette).

It is our great pleasure to take you on an unforgettable journey through the life and adventures of that unsung heroine of the Welsh Suffrage movement, Margaret Haig Thomas, the Viscountess Rhondda.

Suffragette, activist and entrepreneur, Newport's Lady Rhondda paved the way for the equal rights for women. As well as campaigning tirelessly for women’s suffrage, she became the lightning rod for women’s efforts during WW1, survived the sinking of the Lusitania and created the radical feminist magazine Time and Tide. Her indefatigable efforts and endeavours were finally rewarded when, in 1918, women over the age of 30 were enfranchised.

This thigh-slapping romp through the world of suffrage and song is told through the lens of music-hall and fittingly sports an all-female cast and creative team. The audience will be guided through the story by our very own Emcee (Lesley Garrett) following the escapades of Lady Rhondda (Madeleine Shaw) and her brave battalion of suffragettes as they fearlessly takes on Peers, politicians and post-boxes in their struggle for women’s rights.

WNO will showcase this woman’s fight for liberty, survival and equality in a number of ways: from community events, talks and schools workshops to exhibitions, interactive digital experiences as well as the production itself.

The production will premiere in Newport before touring throughout June 2018, with an Autumn tour in October and November to follow.

Rhondda Rips It Up! is supported by:

Supported by the Nicholas John Trust, in memory of Joan Moody

Colwinston Charitable Trust 

PRS Foundation's The Open Fund 

The Ambache Charitable Trust is active in raising the profile of women composers 

The Leche Trust

John Coates Charitable Trust

RVW Trust

Rhondda Union: To donate, please click here

Rhondda Rips It Up! is supported by :

Cast & CreativeBack to top

Emcee Lesley Garrett

Lady Rhondda Madeleine Shaw

Helen Archdale Anitra Blaxhall

Sybil Rosie Hay

Prid Paula Greenwood

Edith Meriel Andrew

Birkenhead Monika Sawa 

Lord Asquith Louise Ratcliffe 

Lottie Catherine Wood

Churchill Carolyn Jackson

Caroline Clegg

Composer Elena Langer

Libretto Emma Jenkins

Designer Lara Booth

Conductor Nicola Rose

Assistant Conductor Berrak Dyer

Lighting Designer Elanor Higgins

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