Glyndebourne to World Premiere ‘Pay the Piper’

By Nicolas Quiroga

On Feb. 25, 2022, Glyndebourne will present the world premiere “Pay the Piper,” the first youth opera, composed exclusively in a program developed for female composers, to help address the underrepresentation of female creators in classical music.

The opera marks the first time that Glyndebourne commissions a new work from more than one composer. Anna Appleby, Ninfea Cruttwell-Reade, Cecilia Livingston, and Ailie Robertson have teamed up with librettist Hazel Gould and designers Natalia Orendain and Joanna
Parker to reinvent the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin.

“Pay the Piper” will be performed by a youth choir of approximately 70 participants aged 9-19 from 47 schools and Stephen Langridge will direct the production, based on a concept by Sinéad O’Neill. American-British conductor Johann Stuckenbruck and assistant conductor Ashley Beauchamp will work with the Psappha ensemble, specialists in the performance of work by living composers.

“When the opportunity arose to compose a new work to be performed by the Glyndebourne Youth Opera, we decided that it would be really interesting to collaborate. So far the process has been really rewarding, stimulating, energizing, and fun, ”said Cecilia Livingston, one of the songwriters for “Pay The Piper.”

The new work will be performed four times in Glyndebourne between Feb. 25 – 27, 2022.