OPERA in Oborne returns in August with one of the best loved of all operas, a sparkling one-act comedy and a gala concert, all performed in the village’s St Cuthbert’s Church in the village near Sherborne, from 2nd to 6th August.
Puccini’s La Boheme, the tragic story of Mimi and Rodolfo, set in belle epoque Paris, will be on Friday 2nd, Saturday 3rd and Monday 5th at 8pm.
Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari’s one-act comedy Il Segreto di Susanna, is being performed on Saturday 3rd August at 3pm. What is Susanna hiding? Her husband’s suspicions are driving him wild. Will it destroy their marriage? Writing at the same time as Puccini, Wolf-Ferrari became internationally famous for his beautiful melodies and bubbling comedy. Il Segreto di Susanna, with its contemporary plot and catchy tunes, is a great example of why he was one of the most performed opera composers of the 1900’s.”
The gala concert, on Sunday 4th at 6pm, is how Opera in Oborne started, the ever-popular gala concert – a sparkling confection of favourite arias and songs. In previous years, the programme has included the Toreador Song, La donna e mobile and Maria from West Side Story, alongside lesser known, but beautiful arias.
The mini festival ends with a Jazz Night at St Cuthbert’s on Tuesday 6th at 7.30 pm, with the Wriggle Valley Jazz Band back for a third consecutive year. This is always a great night with a bar and barbecue in the churchyard and usually ends with dancing in the aisle.
The jazz night is run by the village hall and proceeds go to the upkeep of the hall. All the backstage and front of house work is carried out by an enthusiastic crew of villagers, but the cast are all international soloists in their own right.
Opera in Oborne aims to make opera accessible to all and encourages first time opera-goers. The operas are cleverly abridged by the director, Stephen Anthony Brown and usually last two hours including the interval. Televisions are used to show the audience plot prompts throughout the performances.
Pictured: Scenes from previous operas at Oborne.