Giant head and Jupiter replica arrive in Buxton

Published: 23 November 2020
Reporter: Steve Orme

Part of the set for Viva la Diva arriving at a Derbyshire quarry where it will be stored until the 2021 Buxton Festival

A giant blue head and a three-foot replica of the planet Jupiter have been sent from Austria to Derbyshire where they are being stored in a quarry before becoming part of the set for an opera at Buxton International Festival.

A crew from the festival and Buxton Opera House met the shipment at the Brassington site of Peak District quarry firm Longcliffe. The items will be used for the opera Viva la Diva which Saltzburg State Theatre is producing in association with the festival.

Viva la Diva has music by Gaetano Donizetti and was adapted from plays by Simeone Antonio Sografi in a new English version by Kit Hesketh-Harvey.

The festival’s chief executive officer Michael Williams said, “Buxton Festival has no storage space of its own, so we’re immensely grateful to Longcliffe for allowing us to store our equipment on their site.

“Longcliffe came to our rescue two years ago and donated the space. Before that, many useful props were ending up in landfill. We now have a growing collection of items that we’re looking forward to unpacking and re-purposing for the 2021 Buxton International Festival.”

The pieces are being securely stored in three containers which have been given to the festival by supporters Derek Raphael and Bill and Sue Tyson.

The 2021 opera, musical and literary festival will run from 8 until 25 July.