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Opera North winter season

Published: 21 November 2021
Reporter: Vera Liber

Chrystal E Williams as Carmen Credit: Tristram Kenton

Opera North's 2022 winter season will open at Leeds Grand Theatre in January with two new shows and a revival of Edward Dick's production of Carmen, followed, in June, by a new concert performance of Wagner's Parsifal.

For Verdi's Rigoletto, which opens 22 January, Nigerian-British theatre artist Femi Elufowoju Jr. makes his opera directing debut in a production which will map identity and inequality onto a contemporary canvas. Returning to Opera North are Eric Greene in the title role and Sir Willard White as Count Monterone, while Russian tenor Roman Arndt and American soprano Jasmine Habersham make their company debuts as the Duke of Mantua and Gilda. Garry Walker conducts.

ON's first ever production of Handel's Alcina, from 5 February, will be directed by Tim Albery with Laurence Cummings conducting a cast which includes Máire Flavin in the role of the enchantress Alcina and Patrick Terry as Ruggiero, the young knight. The opera will be live-streamed on the OperaVision platform later in February.

Principal Guest Conductor Antony Hermus will conduct Edward Dick's production of Bizet's Carmen from 12 February. American mezzo Chrystal E Williams returns in the title role, joined for this run by Rafael Rojas as Don José, Alison Langer as Micaëla, and Gyula Nagy as Escamillo.

Wagner's Parsifal will open 1 June.

Originally postponed by the pandemic, the latest concert performances will be directed by P J Harris and will see former Music Director Richard Farnes returning to conduct. Brindley Sherratt and Toby Spence will both make their role debuts as Gurnemanz and Parsifal respectively.