Wexford Festival Opera Announces Formation of a New Chorus

By: Sep. 20, 2011
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As artists from around the globe assembled in Wexford for the first day of rehearsals for the 60th Wexford Festival Opera, Artistic Director David Agler announced the creation of a newly formed Wexford Festival Chorus.

The Festival began in 1951 and quickly took advantage of the local musical talent to fulfil the role of the chorus. However, as the Festival grew and developed, so did the artistic demands of the chorus and it soon became evident that a full-time commitment would be necessary, an impossibility for the many volunteers who also held down jobs during the daytime.

In 1995, the then Artistic Director, Luigi Ferrari, introduced the Prague Choir to fulfil this role. Although a professional choir, the Prague Choir was cast and managed independently of the Festival. While this resolved an immediate need, it was never envisaged as a long-term solution for the Festival.

Since David Agler's appointment as Artistic Director in 2005, he has set out to achieve three major artistic goals: the formation of the Wexford Festival Orchestra, established in 2006, the opening of the Wexford Opera House in 2008 and the establishment of a Wexford Festival Chorus, made up of rising young talent from Ireland and across Europe.

Commenting on his latest artistic development, David Agler said, "I am particularly satisfied that the Festival will now have a chorus to call its own. Singers, directors and conductors come and go. The musical backbone of any fine opera house is its chorus and orchestra. We have now achieved this goal in Wexford and I would like to think that the establishment of the Wexford Festival Chorus and Orchestra will be my lasting contribution to the Festival."

Gavin Carr, long associated with Wexford Festival Opera, is the Chorus Master for the Festival. Commenting on his new role he said, 'Putting this chorus together from some of the best young singers in Ireland and across Europe and beyond has been a thrill and an adventure. Wexford Festival Opera offers so much to the aspiring young artist that it has proved easy to attract the hottest young singers fresh from college (and in some cases just completing their studies), and I can already hear in my mind the thrilling and vibrant sound this new chorus of fresh young stars will produce. In years to come, we hope that - as at Glyndebourne - the brand-new Wexford Festival Opera Chorus features in the biographies of some of the world's major artists as the place where they first learned the art of working in opera at a truly international level.'

Wexford Festival Opera will present over 50 daytime and evening events this season. Full programme details and information on purchasing can be found on www.wexfordopera.com

Booking is brisk, having already achieved 80% of its box-office target 4 weeks ahead of the opening. With many performances already booked out, only limited availability remains. Book now to avoid disappointment.

Book by telephone at: +353 (0)53 912 2144, in person from Wexford Opera House box-office or online at www.wexfordopera.com

The 60th Wexford Festival Opera is grant aided by the Arts Council, Fáilte Ireland, and Wexford County and Borough Councils.



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