Longborough Festival Opera Announces 2021 Season

By Francisco Salazar

The Longborough Festival Opera has announced its 2021 program.

The U.K festival, which is scheduled to take place between June 4 and August 3 will showcase four productions.

In a press release, Artistic Director Polly Graham said, “We’re delighted to be announcing these plans for 2021 and look forward to sharing these now much-anticipated productions with our wonderful audiences, whose loyalty and generosity has supported us through the challenge of 2020. We cannot wait to bring the whole Longborough Festival Opera company together again.”

The first production of the season will be Wagner’s “Die Walküre.” Music Director Anthony Negus will conduct the production, which is set to star Lee Bisset in her much-anticipated role debut as Brünnhilde. Amy Lane directs the production.

In a statement, Bisset said, “I am thrilled to sing my first Ring Cycle as Brunnhilde, the pinnacle of Wagner heroines, for the company in which I sang my first Wagner role. The 2013 Ring Cycle at Longborough was very special, but as Longborough seems to go from strength to strength, knowing the team involved, and seeing what is slowly unfolding, I hope that this new Cycle will be something extraordinary.”

Conductor Lesley Anne Sammons and director Sam Brown bring Mozart’s “Così fan tutte” to life. The production will include the Barefoot Band in her own Anne Sammon’s re-orchestration of the opera, with an English translation.

Artistic Director Polly Graham makes her directing debut in Monteverdi’s “The Return of Ulysses.” Graham notes, “I’m delighted to be collaborating with conductor Robert Howarth on The Return of Ulysses – Monteverdi’s beautiful, compassionate drama of homecoming. Though one of the earliest operas it feels startlingly modern. This will be performed on period instruments, but the production will reflect the drama through a contemporary lens.”

The final production of the season will be Janáček “The Cunning Little Vixen” with Justin Brown conducting and Olivia Fuchs directing. The performance will include Longborough’s Emerging Artists.