Festival has lots to offer

Dame Ellen MacArthur
Dame Ellen MacArthur
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ORGANISERS promise there will be something for everyone at this year’s Buxton Festival, which runs from July 9 – 27.

The 2011 programme will feature six rarely performed operas, two chamber operas, one community opera, 45 eclectic concerts and a star-studded literary series.

Tasmin Little.

Tasmin Little.

Buxton Festival’s chief executive Glyn Foley said: “We’re delighted to be able to mount such an ambitious series of top quality arts events this July.

“Expanding to three Festival productions underlines our ambition, even in these tough times, and Buxton Opera House is the perfect intimate venue to experience all the emotions that opera can explore.”

This year’s Festival productions are fully staged and include Maria di Rohan, Donizetti’s tragic melodrama showing the composer at the height of his powers; Mignon, Thomas’s opera-comique based on Goethe’s Wilhelm Meister and Saul, Handel’s classic oratorio, now set amidst the victory celebrations following the Second World War.

Visiting opera companies include Bampton Classical Opera bringing Cimarosa’s sparkling comedy The Italian Girl in London; Music Theatre Wales with Turnage’s Greek, a modern version of the darkly dramatic Oedipus myth and the Armonico Consort with Monteverdi’s Flying Circus, weaving together some of the composer’s greatest music with a spectacular combination of comedy, circus and dance.

This year’s music series features stars Tasmin Little and Kathryn Stott, chamber groups from St Petersburg and New Zealand, as well as an extensive world music programme spanning four continents.

The hugely popular literary series features favourites such as Melvyn Bragg, Dame Ellen MacArthur, the Dowager Duchess of Devonshire with Alan Titchmarsh, Roy Hattersley, Matthew Parris, A.C. Grayling, Antony Penrose, General Lord Dannatt and many more. With the additional venue of the newly built Pavilion Arts Centre, the Festival has expanded its tightly packed programme even further, offering a huge range of exciting cultural events.

2011 brochures will be available in March and can be requested on 01298 70395 or at lee@buxtonfestival.co.uk. Public booking opens on April 4 and Friends’ and Patrons’ priority booking begins in March.

Full listings are available at www.buxtonfestival.co.uk.