OperaUpClose Presents New English Version of LA BOHEME at Charing Cross Theatre, Now Through Jan 5

The second production in Charing Cross Theatre's second season will be the Olivier Award-winning OperaUpClose production of LA BOHEME directed by Robin Norton-Hale in a new English version by Robin Norton-Hale, with musical direction and piano accompaniment by Elspeth Wilkes.

OperaUpClose's LA BOHEME premiered at the Cock Tavern Theatre on 8 December 2009 and ran sold out for six months, becoming the longest continuously running opera in the UK. It then transferred to Soho Theatre, opening in July 2010 and running sold out for six weeks, before returning to the Cock Tavern Theatre to celebrate its first birthday with a three-week run in December 2010. LA BOHEME won the 2011 Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Opera Production and the 2011 Whatsonstage.com Award for Best Off-West End Production.

Robin Norton-Hale founded OperaUpClose alongside Adam Spreadbury-Maher and Ben Cooper in October 2009. As well as LA BOHEME, she has directed, for OperaUpClose, in her own new English translations, Don Giovanni at Soho Theatre and The Barber of Seville (or Salisbury) at the King's Head. This autumn, she will direct her own new version of Let's Make an Opera and Britten's The Little Sweep for Malmo Opera House, Sweden.

OperaUpClose became the resident company at the King's Head Theatre in October 2010, relaunching the venue as a high quality off-West End alternative to the Royal Opera House and the English National Opera. The company has produced eight new opera productions at the King's Head, all in new English versions. For the production of The Coronation of Poppea, OperaUpClose commissioned a new libretto by Mark Ravenhill and a new aria by Michael Nyman. Adam Spreadbury-Maher is currently directing the company's fourth Puccini, Tosca, in a co-production with Malmo Opera House.

LA BOHEME is produced at Charing Cross Theatre by Dominic Haddock & Adam Spreadbury-Maher for OperaUpClose and Charing Cross Theatre.

LA BOHEME by Giacomo Puccini to an Italian libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa, in a new English version by Robin Norton-Hale, directed by Robin Norton-Hale with musical direction and piano accompaniment by Elspeth Wilkes, will play Charing Cross Theatre, The Arches, Villiers Street in London WC2N 6NL. The show runs today, 30 October 2012 – 5 January 2013.

Tickets are£10 - £35. Call the Box Office at 0844-493-0650 or visit the website: www.charingcrosstheatre.co.uk.

Robin Norton-Hale – Director & Librettist - founded OperaUpClose alongside Adam Spreadbury-Maher and Ben Cooper in October 2009. Her directing credits for OperaUpClose, all in her own new English translations, are La Bohème (Soho, Cock Tavern & King's Head Theatres, winner of the 2011 Olivier Award for Best Opera and the Whatsonstage.com Award for Best Off-West End Production), Don Giovanni (Soho Theatre) and The Barber of Seville (or Salisbury) (King's Head).

Other directing credits include Masters Are You Mad? (Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre), The Taming of the Shrew (Southwark Theatre), Visions of Kerouac (Half Moon Theatre), Best Man Speech(UK tour), Pick 'n' Myths (Lyric Theatre Hammersmith and UK tour), Spirit of Vienna (English Touring Opera), Live Canon (Northcott and Greenwich Theatres), Happy Campers (site specific performances at Montagu Close), Pimpinone (Colourhouse Theatre), and a revival of James Conway's production of Ariodante for ETO. She was Associate Director on Cloudcuckooland, a new musical by Stephen Sharkey and Alex Silverman (UK and international tour); Assistant Director credits include Sweet Charity (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane), Katya Kabanova and The Seraglio (both ETO). In autumn 2012 she will direct her own new version of Let's Make an Opera and Britten's The Little Sweep for Malmo Opera House, Sweden.

Elspeth Wilkes - Musical Director - studied at King's College, London, Trinity College of Music and Royal Academy of Music winning the Scott Huxley Accompaniment Prize and Elena Gerhardt Lieder Prize amongst others. As pianist, Elspeth has performed at venues including St John's Smith Square; Linbury Studio, Royal Opera House; Soho Theatre; Swan Theatre; Stratford-upon-Avon; St James', Piccadilly and St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh and has worked with the Royal Ballet, Royal Shakespeare Company and Southbank Sinfonia. Elspeth was accompanist for BBC Wales's Lesley Garrett and Friends and works as accompanist/assistant conductor with London Oriana Choir, Barnes Choir and Thurrock Choral Society. As musical director/repetiteur, Elspeth has worked with companies including OperaUpClose (Don Giovanni, The Coronation of Poppea, Madame Butterfly, The Barber of Seville and Olivier award winning La Boheme), Longborough Festival Opera (Midsummer Night's Dream), Chelmsford Opera (La Traviata, L'Elisir d'Amore, I Pagliacci), Hampstead Garden Opera (Idomoneo), English Touring Opera, New London Opera Players (Tosca) and Opera de Baugé (Don Pasquale, The Magic Flute, Fidelio) playing continuo on their productions of Orfeo ed Euridice, La Finta Giardiniera and Giulio Cesare.




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