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We are delighted to have four artists performnig in Welsh National Opera’s recently announced 2021/22 season.

Neil Balfour and Keel Watson make their company debuts in Lindy Hume’s new production of Madam Butterfly as Prince Yamadori and The Bonze. Inspired by Puccini’s fantasy landscape of exotic pleasures, this new production interprets Butterfly’s famous story through a dystopian prism. Keel will also perform Don Basilio in a revival of Giles Havergal’s classic prodution of The Barber of Seville.
#WNOButterfly #WNOBarber

Following acclaimed performances as Cio-cio san and  Violetta, Linda Richardson returns to WNO as Donna Anna in a revival of John Caird’s classic production of Don Giovanni, last seen in the 2017/18 season.
#WNOGiovanni

Njabulo Madlala makes his WNO debut in summer 2022 in Will Todd’s much anticipated new commission – Migrations.  This new community opera explores the highs and lows of migration: from the migration of birds to the sailing of The Mayflower 400 years ago; from the story of an Afro-Caribbean slave in Bristol to the experience of Indian doctors working in the NHS.

The production is directed by David Pountney and conducted by Matthew Kofi Waldren with an expanded WNO Orchestra joined by a cast of 100 performers, including a gospel choir, Bollywood dancers and a children’s chorus.
#WNOMigrations

Gweneth Ann Rand and Keel Watson join an international cast to perform in Birmingham Opera Company’s immersive new community production of Wagner’s Das Rheingold, or RhineGold. Gwen, as Erda, and Keel, Fasolt.

The performances in summer 2021, directed by Graham Vick, with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Alpesh Chauhan, will take place canal-side in the 100,000 sq ft The Tubeworks on Icknield Port Loop.

Keel Watson and Njabulo Madlala return to English National Opera for their 2019/20 season. Keel will perform Mars in Emma Rice’s new production of Orpheus in the Underworld, Zuniga in Calixto Bieito’s production of Carmen, and The Bonze in Anthony Minghella’s acclaimed Madam Butterfly, where he is joined by Njabulo Madlala as Prince Yamadori.

Njabulo is currently preparing the role of Aeneas for ENO’s production of Dido, a co-production with the Unicorn Theatre, with performances in May and June.

Keel Watson performs at the BBC Proms as the Usher in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial by Jury at the newly-restored Alexandra Palace TheatreThe semi-staged performance with the BBC Concert Orchestra and BBC Singers is conducted by Jane Glover, and directed by Jack Furness.

The performance on is sold but will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 at 3pm on 1 September and will be available afterwards to listen again on the BBC website.

In the wake of the terrible fire at Grenfell Tower, Nazan Fikret, with support and generous assistance from Cadogan Hall, the Royal Opera House, Garsington Opera, Opera Magazine, the International Opera Awards and leading arts professionals, has rallied fellow performers to organise a concert to raise funds for those affected.

The concert on at Cadogan Hall on 17 September, presented by Petroc Trelawny, will feature a sensational line-up of both established and up-and-coming artists. This is a one-off event and everyone involved has given their services for free.

All funds raised will be distributed equally between Rugby Portobello Trust (Charity No 1100143) and Grief Encounter (Charity No 1101277) which focus specifically on helping the affected families with rehabilitation and looking to the future.

Keel Watson returns to Opera Holland Park this summer to reprise the role of the Caterpillar in Will Todd’s family opera Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. The Caterpillar is a role that Keel created when the opera was first premiered in 2013.

“Keel Watson was a magnificent Caterpillar, moving with stately torpor and delivering another show-stopper with his ‘Wonderland Blues’.”
(Opera)

“Perhaps the most memorable of all was Keel Watson’s Caterpillar, who got to sing a most delightful blues.”
(Planet Hugill)

Performances take plave on the Yucca Lawn at Opera Holland Park from 13 – 29 July 2017.

The UK premiere of Defiant Requiem: Verdi at Terezín takes place at Durham Cathedral on Saturday 28 January. The concert tells the story of the courageous Jewish prisoners in the Theresienstadt Concentration Camp (Terezín) during World War II, who performed the Verdi Requiem while experiencing the depths of human degradation.

Defiant Requiem: Verdi at Terezín is a concert-drama that combines the magnificent music of Verdi with video testimony from survivors of the original Terezín chorus and footage from the 1944 Nazi propaganda film about Theresienstadt.

The concert will feature Gweneth Ann Rand, Alison Kettlewell, Philip Sheffield and Keel Watson, with the Durham Choral Society Orchestra, Durham University Orchestral Society, Durham Choral Society and University Chamber Choir, conducted by Murry Sidlin.