New Year’s Eve Viennese Gala concert at Brighton Dome

New Year’s Eve Viennese Gala concert at Brighton Dome

Soprano Rebecca Bottone is one of the most versatile performers on the operatic stage today. It has been said that she gets her charisma from her father, the tenor Bonaventura Bottone, but her chameleon ability is entirely her own. Her character roles have been highly acclaimed in performances at the Royal Opera House and with the Welsh National Opera. On New Year’s Eve she appears as herself when she joins the Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra at Brighton Dome for the second year running, to add glamour and sparkle to a very Viennese celebration. Her contributions will include “By Strauss” from An American in Paris,The Waltz Song” from Tom Jones and the bewitching “Vilja” from The Merry Widow. When she sang here last New Year’s Eve The Argus reviewer wrote: “the charming Rebecca Bottone, a soprano who loves to show off in the nicest possible sense, seduced and dazzled with a display that showed not just vocal agility but a fine control of tone and soaring power. Her supreme talents were best shown in the melodious Vilja by Lehar, enhanced by shimmering strings.”

The orchestra will welcome in 2018 with a feast of popular orchestral favourites from that golden age of Viennese light music just before the First World War – a programme of lively and nostalgic music from the repertoire of the Strauss family and its contemporaries. Johann Strauss II captured the light-hearted approach to life favoured by the Viennese of his day more than anyone else. With gems such as the Emperor Waltz he established himself as “The Waltz King” and surely no such celebration of Viennese music is complete without that perennial favourite The Blue Danube Waltz.

Alongside the traditional foot-tapping Strauss waltzes, polkas and marches, conductor Barry Wordsworth has included favourite light music scores from some of our finest English composers: Ralph Vaughan Williams’ fabulous English folk tune Fantasia on Greensleeves, Malcolm Arnold’s gorgeous folk tune influenced English Country Dance No.8 and Richard Rodney Bennett’s “Waltz” from Murder on the Orient Express – a brilliant musical depiction of a train moving away from the station platform.

With such a varied and entertaining programme on offer, why not join the Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra on Sunday afternoon to welcome in the New Year with style and panache.

This concert, firmly established as part of the city’s festivities and generously sponsored by the John Carewe Brighton Orchestra Trust, nearly sold out last year, so do book early to avoid disappointment.




Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre have announced the casting The Turn of the Screw, a co-production with English National Opera, which plays 22 – 30 June as part of their 2018 season. Two casts will play on alternate performances.

The Prologue and role of Peter Quint will be shared by Elgan Ll?r Thomas and William MorganElgan Ll?r Thomas makes his English National Opera debut as a new ENO Harewood Artist having also covered the role of Count Almaviva in The Barber of Seville. A 2016/17 Scottish Opera Emerging Artist, credits include The Elixir of Love, and The Trial with other credits including Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Mananan International Festival), Paul Bunyan (Welsh National Youth Opera) and Eugene Onegin (Garsington Opera). He is currently singing in The Barber of Seville with the Theatre des Champs-Elysees.

Previously for English National Opera, William Morgan has appeared in The Day After and Between Worlds (ENO at the Barbican) and Le Comte Ory (ENO’s Opera Works programme at Sadler’s Wells. Other notable credits include L’Orfeo (Bayerische Staatsoper), Hippolyte et Aricie (Glyndebourne), The Rake’s Progress (European Tour) and as Anthony in Sweeney Todd(Longborough Festival).

Miss Jessel will be played by Nadine Livingston and Rachael Lloyd. Nadine Livingston, Scottish Opera Emerging Artist 2009-2011 has appeared as Mimi and Musetta in La bohème, Micaela in Carmen, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, and appears as Nedda in their 2018 production of Pagliacci. Other notable credits include Eugene Onegin (Ryedale Festival) The MinotaurGloriana and The Ring Cycle (Royal Opera House), as well as extensive Oratorio and Concert appearances.

For English National Opera, Rachael Lloyd has appeared in The Day AfterThe Magic Flute, and as Pitti-Sing in The Mikado. Other notable credits include Carmen (Raymond Gubbay), Lucia di Lammermoor and Madama Butterfly (Royal Opera House), Giulio Cesare (Glyndebourne) and A Little Night Music (Théâtre du Châtelet).

Mrs Grose will be played by Janis Kelly and Sarah Pring.  Janis Kelly has performed with English National Opera for over 30 years, and takes the role of Marcellina in The Marriage of Figaro in Spring 2018. She received worldwide acclaim for her portrayal of the title role in Rufus Wainwright’s Prima Donna, which she performed at the Manchester International Festival (World Premiere), Sadler’s Wells, Toronto, Portland, in concert at the Royal Opera House and Teatro Real, Madrid, and is now available on CD. Other recent appearances include Mrs Lovett in Sweeney Todd (Welsh National Opera), Mrs Nixon in Nixon in China (Metropolitan Opera, New York/Omroep Muziek/English National Opera), Lady Billows in Albert Herring (Los Angeles Opera) and Hazel George in the World Premiere of Philip Glass’ The Perfect American (Teatro Real, Madrid/English National Opera).

Sarah Pring has previously appeared with English National Opera in Lucia di LammermoorJenufa, and reprises her performance as Mrs Alexander in Satyagraha in February 2018.  Other recent credits include Lady Bertram in Mansfield Park (The Grange Festival), Mother in Hansel and Gretel (Opera North), Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro (Welsh National Opera) and, at the Royal Opera House, as Berta in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Giovanna in Rigoletto, and Annina in La traviata.

The role of the Governess will be played by Anita Watson and Rhian LoisAnita Watson has previously appeared as the Governess in The Turn of the Screw (La Fenice, Venice), Die Zauberflöte and as Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel (Royal Opera House), Don Giovanni (Australian Opera/Nederlandse Reisopera/ Landestheater Salzburg/Scottish Opera/Teatro La Fenice, Venice), as Mimi in La bohème  and as Anne Trulove in The Rake’s Progress (Teatro Municipal de Santiago).

Rhian Lois is an ENO Harewood Artist, taking the role of Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro in Spring 2018. Previous English National Opera credits include Atalanta in Xerxes, Musetta in La bohème, Frasquita in Carmen, Papagena in The Magic FlutePeter GrimesBetween Worlds and The Passenger. Other notable credits include Figaro Gets a Divorce (Grand Théâtre de Genève), Die Fladermaus (Welsh National Opera), Don Giovanni (Santa Fe) and The Magic Flute (Royal Opera House).

The roles of Flora and Miles will be announced in due course.

Artistic Director of Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, Timothy Sheader, directs The Turn of the Screw, which plays 10 performances from 22 June – 30 June 2018. ENO Mackerras FellowToby Purser conducts members of the ENO orchestra, and the production is designed by Soutra Gilmour. Completing the creative team, lighting design is by Jon Clark, sound design byNick Lidster for Autograph, and casting by ENO Head of Casting, Michelle WilliamsBarbara Houseman is the Season Associate Director (Voice and Text) for the 2018 season.

Philip Venables wins the 2017 British Composer Award

Philip Venables wins the 2017 British Composer Award in the Stage Works for his operatic adaptation of Sarah Kane’s 4.48 Psychosis – a co-commission between the Guildhall School of Music & Drama and The Royal Opera in association with The Lyric Hammersmith.

Philip Venables said, ‘I’m delighted that 4.48 Psychosis has been so widely commended – it’s a credit to the amazing team and cast we had. New opera and music theatre is becoming ever more exciting and innovative, and I’m so lucky to be involved in that.’

English National Opera to perform Acis and Galatea and Paul Bunyan for the very first time as part of ENO Studio Live

English National Opera (ENO) will perform Handel’s Acis and Galatea and Britten’s Paul Bunyan for the first time as part of its outside work series. ENO Studio Live forms part of ENO Outside which takes ENO’s work to arts-engaged audiences that may not have considered opera before, presenting the immense power of opera in more intimate studio and theatre environments.

Acis and Galatea (June 2018) will be directed by Sarah Tipple and performed at ENO’s historic rehearsal studios, Lilian Baylis House. ENO Studio Live launched in May 2017 with the UK premiere of Jonathan Dove’s The Day After, performed for the first time in a new choral version, and performances of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial by Jury. The initiative showcases emerging talent from the UK opera and theatre worlds as well as championing ENO’s own in-house talent and young directors. Paul Bunyan (September 2018) will be directed by Jamie Manton and will be ENO’s first collaboration with Wilton’s Music Hall.

The choice of these two productions celebrates the integral role that both Handel and Britten have played in the company’s history. For decades ENO has developed its reputation as ‘the house of Handel’ (The Sunday Telegraph) and, since its production of Semele in 1970, the company has performed 12 different operas by the composer. In 1945 Sadler’s Wells Opera (which became ENO in 1974) gave the world premiere of Benjamin Britten’s Peter Grimes, and Britten’s music has been at the heart of the company ever since. In 2018, the year which marks fifty years of opera in residence at the London Coliseum, ENO will perform four works by Benjamin Britten: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Turn of the Screw, Paul Bunyan and War Requiem.

ENO’s Artistic Director, Daniel Kramer, commented:

‘It was truly inspiring to see our whole company pull together earlier this year to create the two productions that launched our ENO Studio Live series. We are so proud of the exceptional talent that we have at ENO, and I delighted that these next two productions will enable us to continue to celebrate young directors and designers while supporting some of the UK’s most exciting emerging singers.

‘Following the tremendous critical and audience response to Jamie Manton’s production of The Day After this summer I am particularly proud that Jamie is returning to work with the company and with our award-winning chorus on Paul Bunyan at Wilton’s Music Hall.

‘The music of Handel and Britten has played a vital role in ENO’s history, and constitutes part of the very DNA of our company. I am looking forward to the company’s first performances of these two works in the inspiring hands of two such impressive up-and-coming directors. Opera has the unique power to move and inspire people in a way that almost nothing else can, and it is very exciting to have the chance to share this with our existing and new audiences not only through our productions at the London Coliseum, but also in these intense and intimate settings.’

Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra concert at Brighton Dome: Sunday 3 December, 2.45pm

The third concert of the Brighton Phil’s current season at Brighton Dome on Sunday 3 December takes us from the sun-drenched Italian Riviera to the jazz clubs of pre-war America courtesy of three great Romantic composers: Elgar, Ravel & Rachmaninov, in the company of Conductor Laureate Barry Wordsworth and the illustrious pianist Melvyn Tan.

Elgar’s concert overture In the South is a fabulous evocation of a family holiday in Alassio that perfectly captures the delights of an Italian town and the grandeur of the Italian coast.

Sumptuous and punchy, Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G Major is infused with the jazz-age glamour that he experienced on a concert tour of America and in the clubs of Paris – a heady juxtaposition of jazz syncopation and neo-classical elegance.

Barry Wordsworth, Conductor Laureate, Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra, says “The Ravel is one of my favourite piano concertos as it shows the genius of this great composer to perfection, and with a soloist we will be so proud to have with us again in Brighton. Three masterworks of the most contrasting mood and character will make up a wonderful afternoon of symphonic music.”

Epic in scale yet intimate in mood, Rachmaninov’s Second Symphony is surely one of the best loved in the repertoire. Its hauntingly beautiful central theme is one of the most exquisite by a composer noted for his luscious melodies, and ends this concert on a torrent of romantic ecstasy.

Tickets (from £12-£38) are available from Brighton Dome Ticket Office in Church Street, Brighton, (01273) 709709 and online: – 50% discount for students and Under 18s.

Discounted parking is available for BPO concert-goers at NCP Church Street – just £6 between 1-6pm.


Audiences will have the chance to feel part of a new opera inspired by Siegfried Sassoon’s poems with an innovative 360-degree simulated experience of Garsington Opera’s Silver Birch on BBC Arts Digital from midday, Wednesday 08 November.

Part of the BBC Opera Season, this ground-breaking experience from BBC Arts Digital and Garsington Opera entitled Person 181, utilises 360-degree video capture and cutting edge ambisonic audio recording to simulate being part of the community opera. The technology will give audiences the experience of being on stage standing among the cast of 180 performers during a performance of Silver Birch, as well as unique behind the scenes access in the build up to the actual performance.

Silver Birch is an exciting new commission from leading UK composer Roxanna Panufnik, with a libretto by writer Jessica Duchen. Inspired by Siegfried Sassoon’s poems, and the testimony of a British soldier who recently served in Iraq, the piece illustrates the human tragedies of conflicts past and present. The opera chorus includes a variety of first time singers from various community groups including veterans and family members.

Silver Birch is a celebration of music, drama, poetry and dance and brings together professional singers with 180 members of the local community. Designed to appeal to everyone from age 8 upwards, Karen Gillingham, Creative Director of Garsington Opera’s Learning & Participation programme, directs and Douglas Boyd conducts. The production is also supported by Foley Artists from Pinewood Studios.

Person 181 will be available at along with three short ‘making of’ films, and at BBC Taster

Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra

In the Brighton Phil’s Remembrance Sunday concert at the Dome on 12 November music by some of Britain’s greatest 20th century composers sits alongside a vivid re-imagining of an 18th century masterpiece.

The orchestra is joined by the violinist Matthew Trusler who performs Benjamin Britten’s emotionally and technically demanding Violin Concerto, mysterious, martial and melodic by turns. Written in 1939 the concerto was heavily influenced by the escalation of hostilities in Europe.

The concert opens with Bach’s Toccata & Fugue (arranged by Leopold Stokowski) familiar to many from the opening scenes of Disney’s Fantasia (1940) when Mickey Mouse shakes hands with The Conductor, Stokowski himself.

Then we have George Butterworth’s evocative A Shropshire Lad which was written in 1913, based on poems by AE Housman. This sumptuous orchestral rhapsody conjures up the rural idyll of Edwardian England that was to change forever in the First World War, where Butterworth was to lose his life in the trenches.

The concert ends with Vaughan Williams’ powerful Symphony No.4 which was written in 1935 as the storm clouds of war gathered over Europe. This craggy and at times ferocious piece is shot through with the composer’s rage, humour and poetic nature.

Tickets (from £12-£38) are available from Brighton Dome Ticket Office in Church Street, Brighton, (01273) 709709 and online: 50% discount for students and Under 18s.

Discounted parking is available for BPO concert-goers at NCP Church Street – just £6 between 1-6pm.




Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre have today announced the full creative team for The Turn of the Screw, a co-production with English National Opera, alongside titles to complete the Open Air Theatre’s 2018 season

Artistic Director of Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, Timothy Sheader, directs The Turn of the Screw, which plays 9 performances from 22 June – 30 June 2018. ENO Mackerras Fellow Toby Purser conducts members of the ENO orchestra, and the production is designed by Soutra Gilmour. Completing the creative team, lighting design is by Jon Clark, sound design by Nick Lidster for Autograph, and casting by ENO Head of Casting, Michelle Williams.

This story of unearthly encounters at a remote country house, and of a young governess desperate to protect her children, finds chilling new levels of suspense in this unique outdoor production of Benjamin Britten’s masterly reworking of Henry James’ classic novella.

Timothy Sheader is a multiple Olivier-Award winner with credits at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre including Into the WoodsThe CrucibleCrazy for YouLord of the Flies, and Porgy and Bess. His production of To Kill a Mockingbird won the WhatsOnStage Award for Best Play Revival, and it subsequently completed a sell-out UK tour ahead of a month-long residency at the Barbican. In 2016 Timothy directed Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar, which won the Olivier-Award for Best Musical Revival and the Evening Standard Award for Best Musical. The production played a return engagement in 2017, and plays at the Lyric Opera of Chicago in 2018. Other productions include The Magistrate(National), Barnum (Chichester Festival), The Three Musketeers (Bristol Old Vic), Streetcar to Tennessee (Young Vic), Sweet Charity (Sheffield Crucible, TMA Best Musical Award), andMy Fair Lady (Aarhus Teater, Denmark).

Previously for the ENO, Mackerras Fellow Toby Purser conducted The Marriage of Figaro. He has also conducted orchestras including the English Chamber Orchestra, the London Concert Orchestra, L’Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, the Orpheus Sinfonia, Sinfonia Viva, Kammerphilharmonie Graz, the St Petersburg Camerata, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the St Petersburg Festival Orchestra, as well as a range of concerts for Raymond Gubbay Ltd at major venues throughout the UK.  Working with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and the tenor Jesús León, he recorded Bel Canto now available on Opus Arte CD. Toby is also the Founder and Artistic Director of the Orion Orchestra, a stepping-stone orchestra for the most talented musicians leaving music college, and Artistic Director of the Peace and Prosperity Trust. Other notable engagements include conducting Madama Butterfly, Eugene Onegin, Rigoletto and Fortunio (Grange Park Opera), The Daughter of the Regiment, Orpheus in the Underworld, Tales of Offenbach and The Queen’s Lace Handkerchief (Opera Della Luna) and Le Comte Ory (Chelsea Opera Group). For Pimlico Opera, he has conducted productions in various prisons, with a cast of inmates performing alongside professionals, including Carmen the Musical, Les Misérables, Sugar, Sister Act, Sweeney Todd and West Side Story.

The Mackerras Conducting Fellowship celebrates the legacy of Sir Charles Mackerras, ENO Music Director between 1970 and 1977, and is made possible with the philanthropic support of The Philip Loubser Foundation.

The International Interview Concerts at St Paul’s, Worthing

DUO Arnicans – Arta Arnicane (piano) Florian Arnicans (cello)

Recording artistes from Zurich with CD albums together and solo on the Solo Musica label (Sony) and Arcodiva:

“Special affinity . . . powerfully attractive”  –  Music Web International
“superb partnership” –  Pizzicato
“Brilliant! What I call a discovery!”  –  Vienna Zietung

St Paul’s Cafe, Worthing BN11 1EE 
01903 368967                                                             
Thursday 2nd November 2017
Doors at 7.00pm; Starts at 7.30pm

Tickets:                                                                                                                               £13 Adult; £11 WSS members; £5 Students; £1 Up-to-18; Unreserved seating

Arta’s website (also containing DUO Arnicans):

Florian’s website:

So what’s an Interview Concert? It’s a compelling, affordable, intimate and social experience:

  • Audience ‘In the Round’ –  close-up and connecting
  • Seating unreserved –  buy, then choose where to sit – no ‘expensive’ seats
  • Interviews with the artistes –  get to know them, and the music played
  • Audience questions –  you can have your question asked, too
  • Cafe open –  tasty St Paul’s fare on sale before, in the interval, at the end
  • CDs on sale – solo piano or duo; take some DUO Arnicans music home with you
  • Meet the musicians afterwards –  interaction, reciprocation

It’s another return with her husband to Worthing for popular Arta Arnicane (Latvia), winner of the 2010 Sussex International Piano Competition (SIPC) and subsequent concerto appearances with Worthing Symphony Orchestra, a solo Interview Concert in 2012 and a concert together during the 2013 SIPC, when Arta was a guest juror in the competition.

It will be a second visit here for Florian Arnicans (Germany) and with him this Interview Concert showcases the cello’s distinctive, stirring and enveloping ability to sing like a human voice. If you’ve not experienced it before, this evening will unveil to you to this beautiful instrumental combination.

The cello will team up with the piano’s ability in the hands of Arta to sing back and combine, to make music to stay with you long after you’ve been at this concert. Their programme of solos and duos is subtitled with the Latin American name for song, Canción, and will be an example of Arta’s special artistry in creating imaginative and rewarding programmes.

Both will be interviewed and already Worthing audiences know and revere Arta’s powers of happy verbal communication. We’ll be hearing Florian in conversation for the first time. Married with one son, they are based in Zurich, Switzerland. They play St Paul’s after a lunchtime concert appearance at the London School of Economics & Political Science.

Their ‘Programme Canción’: “The Cello Sings”

Johann Sebastian Bach  –  Arioso (melodious and vocal)
Franz Schubert  –  Ständchen (serenade)
Felix Mendelssohn  –  Lied ohne Worte Op.109 (Song without Words)
Antonin Dvorak  –  Melodie
Pablo Casals  – Song of the Birds
Maurice Ravel  –  Pièce en forme de Habanera (sultry Spanish dance)
 Josef Suk  –  Serenade


Johannes Brahms  –  Sonata for Cello and Piano in F major Op 99

  • Allegro vivace (quick; animated, lively)
  • Adagio affettuoso (slow; but warm-hearted and affectionately)
  • Allegro passionate (quick; passionately)
  • Allegro molto (very quick)
In 2013, Arta and Florian delighted the audience with Brahms’ first cello sonata. Here now comes the equally superb second. Brahms could play both instruments!



Celebrating their 25th anniversary, early music ensemble, Joglaresa, directed by Belinda Sykes, release Sing We Yule on 1st December 2017.


On 1st December, London-based early music ensemble, Joglaresa, directed by Carnegie Hall soloist Belinda Sykes, release Sing We Yule, their new album of medieval, folk, and contemporary song featuring guest soloist Dame Emma Kirkby. The sixth studio work by the ensemble, the disc celebrates the group’s 25th anniversary and 25 years of Belinda’s career as one of Britain’s most imaginative performers of medieval song. Sykes’ critically acclaimed approach to early music includes a unique penchant for improvisation, which constantly re-draws the distinction between composer and performer. Among the 21 tracks of Medieval, Renaissance and traditional Yuletide song are some of Joglaresa’s trademark genre- defying approach to traditional repertoire: a mash-up of medieval motet Ave Rosa, 80s band Dead Or Alive, and American rapper Flo Rida (although with words in Latin); an old-timey hoedown take on Ding Dong Merrily; a Pythonesque ‘Killer Rabbit’ instrumental complete with knife percussion. Highlighting Joglaresa’s trademark genredefying approach to traditional repertoire, Sing We Yule also features a mash-up of medieval motet Ave Rosa, 80s band Dead Or Alive, and American rapper Flo Rida (although with words in Latin).

Joglaresa tour Sing We Yule with dates on:

23 November – Andover

5 December – Chipping Sodbury

9 December – Hemel Hempstead

11 December – York

12 December – Skipton

14 December – Nottingham

16 December – Cutty Sark, London (Official CD Launch Concert)

19 December – Cockermouth