DON GIOVANNI to Headline A Festival of Sex, Love and Death
HeadFirst Productions brings opera to the Pleasance Theatre for the very first time with its production of Don Giovanni as A Festival of Sex, Love and Death's flagship production. Led by an all-female creative team (Conductor, Director, Designer), this production puts women at the front and centre of what is ostensibly a story about male lust.
HeadFirst Productions' Artistic Director, Sophie Gilpin, says "Whilst gender equality and every day sexism debates rage in newspapers and on social media, and public figures are heard espousing nonsense about 'locker room banter', we have chosen to explore the fine line between seduction and sexual manipulation, and consider what's it's like to fall for the one person you know you shouldn't. To be desired is - after all - desirable."
This operatic masterpiece grapples with the complexity of human nature; contradictions, hidden urges, and darkest fears. By exploring the conflict between immorality and amorality, and - crucially - by telling the story from the women's perspective, this production will steer away from the opera's traditionally male gaze, and leave the audience questioning their preconceptions.
Returning to London after 4* and 5* reviews for La Bohème in 2014, HeadFirst Productions promises provocation, dark humour and sensuality.
Conductor Sonia Ben Santamaria Trained at the Royal Academy of Music and the National Opera Studio. As Conductor: Opera up Close (upcoming), Tête à Tête Festival, Opera Integra, Matchbox Opera. As Assistant Conductor/répétiteur: Royal Opera House, English National Opera, Opera Holland Park, Welsh National Opera, Wexford Festival Opera.
Director Sophie Gilpin As Director: Hampstead Garden Opera (upcoming), HeadFirst Productions, Riverside Opera/Rose Theatre Kingston, Celebrate Voice, Re:Sound Music Theatre/Oxford Lieder Festival, Grimeborne Festival/Arcola Theatre, Little Pieces of Gold/Park Theatre. As Assistant Director: Opera North (upcoming), Iford Arts, Opera up Close, Dorset Opera, Metta Theatre, Kings Head Theatre.
Designer Anna Bonomelli Trained in Venice and with Paul Brown. As Designer: Les Azuriales (upcoming), Love on the dole (London), La chiave dell'ascensore (Italy), King Lear (London), The Love Shack (London), The Love for Three Oranges (Italy). As Associate/Assistant Designer: Albert Herring (Firenze, Italy) West Side Story (Manchester, NYMT production) Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny (Teatro dell'Opera di Roma, Italy) The Divided Laing (Arcola Theatre, London) Don Giovanni (Como, Italy) Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District (Goteborg Opera, Sweden) and Otello (Zurich Opernhaus, Switzerland).
Donna Anna Caroline Modiba
Donna Elvira Elizabeth Roberts
Zerlina Siân Cameron
Don Giovanni Matthew Sprange
Leporello Samuel Pantcheff
Masetto Ian Beadle
Ottavio Jorge Navarro Colorado
Il Commendatore Stephen Holloway
A Festival of Sex, Love and Death brings together a selection of the UK's most exciting theatre makers: 8 companies will stage 5 events over 10 days. With Mozart's masterpiece Don Giovanni at its heart, #SLDfest has something for everyone; opera, dance, cabaret, new writing, and physical theatre.
HeadFirst Productions produces mid-scale opera and theatre with high production values. Our work is always socially engaged, embracing ever-shifting perceptions and paradigms. We are committed to creating work that is dynamic, engaging and exciting. We strive to increase accessibility to the arts by producing exceptional work that is appealing for a new audience as well as for regular theatre-goers. We support emerging talent and always pay our artists.
Venue: Pleasance Theatre
Dates: Thursday 26th October 7.30pm
Sunday 29th October 6pm
Monday 30th October 7.30pm
Wednesday 1st November 7.30pm
Friday 3rd November 7.30pm
Box Office: pleasance.co.uk
020 7609 180