Grange Park Opera to World Premiere Rediscovered Opera by Sir John Tavener

By David Salazar

Grange Park Opera has recently discovered a previously unperformed work by composer Sir John Tavener and is set to provide it with its world premiere in 2024.

Tavener is one of the most acclaimed British composers of the post-war era and his final opera, “Krishna” has now been uncovered after 14 years in manuscript form. The company will undertake the world premiere with Sir David Poutney directing.

The opera, which focuses on the cycle of Krishna’s life through 15 vignettes, features a “Celestial Narrator” to bridge the supernatural and natural. Of this character, the composer noted “He describes each scene in the simplest possible way. He moves freely in the audience, explaining the double meaning, charming, frightening and consoling us. The music is intensely vivid and highly dramatic.”

“David Pountney brought me the project and within two days I was at Chester Music examining the 358 giant sheets of Tavener’s manuscript. It quickly became clear this was a masterpiece that needed to be brought to life. We are now actively searching for collaborators to give premières in Europe and, of course, in India. The search for Indian philanthropists begins,” stated Wasfi Kani, OBE, the Founder and CEO of Grange Park Opera.

Tavener, who was once hailed as “the musical discovery of the year” by the Guardian, composed several religious works including “The Protecting Veil,” “Song for Athene,” and “Prayer of the Heart.”