100 Putney Primary Pupils Unite For Performance

Hansel & Gretel opera will be performed on 6th July

Tickets to Hansel and Gretel are available on the door.
They will cost £10 for adults, £6 for concessions, and will be free for those under the age of 11.

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The production of the opera, Hansel and Gretel, will be held at All Saints’, Putney Common on Sunday 6 July. The two performances – at 2pm and 4pm – will feature four local Putney primary schools – All Saints', St Mary’s, Hotham and Our Lady of Victories', which will provide the core of a 100-strong children's chorus.

The modern dress production is the brainchild of opera director, Donna Stirrup, and will feature an orchestra comprised of professional players and talented amateur local players. Donna has worked at English National Opera, the Royal Opera House and Glyndebourne for the last twelve years, both in the UK and globally. Peter Foggitt, conductor, is the director of music at All Saints' Church.

The production marks the launch of a new community initiative in Putney – Community in Music – which aims to bring children's operas, small-scale operas and semi-staged concerts of oratorios to audiences at All Saints' Church, Putney Common. It is a self-funding project, supported by sponsorship from local businesses, and involves musicians, singers and members of the Putney community of all ages.

The opera – penned by Engelbert Humperdinck (d. 1921) and translated by David Pountney – will feature seven soloists, five of whom are under 18 and include 17 year-old soprano, Hannah Cox, in the role of Gretel and 9 year-old Henry Jeynes in the role of Hansel.

Two young professional singers – Katy Thomson and Richard Roberts – will take on the roles of the witch/mother and father respectively.

Donna Stirrup, director, said:
“It is very exciting to be able to bring such a significant community event to fruition. The fact that four local schools have agreed to take part in this production is testament to the strong community spirit which prevails in Putney. The children’s chorus will also include children at other schools in the local area, both primary and secondary. A number of teenagers are involved as performers, assistant directors, costume designers, prop-makers, stage managers, and make-up artists.

She continued:
“Hansel and Gretel is an incredibly accessible opera which is designed to appeal to adults and children alike. This coupled with the fact that the beautiful church of All Saints’ Putney provides fantastic acoustics, promises to make for an extremely memorable event. ”

The next event in the Community in Music calendar will be an adult-based semi-staged concert of Messiah which will take place on 14 December.

June 26, 2014

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