“Despite their young age, the children loved the experience; they sat quite mesmerised during the performance - their little faces positively lit up! The project has been a fantastic experience, affording them a unique opportunity to work with professional singers and enter the wonderful world of opera."
Helen Burns - Stokenchurch Primary School
Everyone is treated as professionals in our schools' projects with the expectation that we create extraordinary work whilst having lots of fun. Our programme always complements the operas of the forthcoming season and offers opportunities to attend performances or dress rehearsals at Wormsley. In 2017 our focus opera is the newly-commissioned 'People's Opera', Silver Birch.
Our work with primary schools this year focuses on facilitating the youngest generations to discover the world of opera. Working with six local primary schools we will explore Silver Birch over five days, leading to a sharing performance day featuring 180 children.
Short residencies in secondary schools with a professional team of a director, composer and singer using msuical and dramatic themes from a focus opera. Pupils are taught some of the repertoire, devise their own material and hear a professional singer perform. We work with groups of up to 50 students of mixed ages, who form a company to create their own mini-opera.
In March we collaborated with the Foley team (post-production sound design) from Pinewood Studios on a 3-day multidisciplinary residency at Cressex Community School, and will be working with singers and instrumentalists at The Misbourne School in July.
2017 is a very special year for our Learning & Participation participants, in that many will have the opportunity to perform on our stage as part of the company's main season, alongside professional singers and orchestra.
Silver Birch (28, 29, 30 July) features a 50-strong Primary Company, auditioned from our local partner primary schools. A further 50 young people (aged 11-22) successfully auditioned for the Youth Company (singers, dancers and Foley performers) in the opera. Rehearsals start in April and we look forward to producing this world premiere together.