Opera North “homegrown” events

A series of “homegrown” events are being scheduled by Opera North among its international programme for the Howard Assembly Room’s reopening season this autumn.

Opera North says the programme will bring together artists and organisations from the north and performers from the Company’s ensembles to the stage, and putting the venue at the heart of its community.

Opera North’s £18M Music Works redevelopment campaign nearing completion, the venue will reopen in October with its own front door and an expanded programme of folk, jazz, world and experimental music, chamber concerts and more.

This is all part of Opera North’s Theatre of Sanctuary status, awarded in 2018 in recognition of its work to make refugees and asylum seekers feel valued and celebrated.

Dominic Gray, Projects Director, Opera North, said, “The homegrown season is very close to our hearts right now, and we’re thrilled to be celebrating the connections between the local and the international.

“Being a Theatre of Sanctuary opens us up to the diverse and rich communities making their homes in our city, and our Open Mic Night will give a showcase to some amazing music and voices. With incredible Leeds partners such as South Asian Arts-uk and the Brudenell Social Club we can present new music that won’t be heard anywhere else, and from our mainstage Opera Company international guest singers will give rare, small-scale recitals, that bring us all close to the essence of the human voice. A new commission (The Crowd) for Leeds’ composer Matthew Bourne will surely bring the house down. We’re so pleased to be home again!”

Highlights include:

• A Theatre of Sanctuary Open Mic Night, opening the stage to refugees and sanctuary seeks as part of Platforma Festival

• An opportunity for all ages to explore behind the scenes of the Howard Assembly Room and Howard Opera Centre with a range of workshops and events in October half term

• Three shows from Manchester Collective presented in partnership with Leeds International Concert Season

• FILMusic: Pianist Matthew Bourne premieres a live soundtrack for pioneering late silent film The Crowd, an Opera North commission for LIFF

• Darius Battiwalla performs a live soundtrack to Nosferatu for Hallowe’en

• Twilight Concerts featuring Opera North’s ensembles and guest artists

• Partnership with The Brudenell Social Club brings Piano Sessions and Connan Mockasin to the venue

The Howard Assembly Room reopens on Saturday 9 October with : Love for Sale, with many other acts already announced including Courtney Pine and Zoe Rahman (22 October), Richard Dawson (30 October), Omar Sosa and Seckou Keita (17 November) and Hollie McNish (25 November). The venue has been closed since March 2019 during Opera North’s £18 million redevelopment works.

Tickets for all events at the Howard Assembly Room are available to book online, with discounts for selected events available to anyone aged 16-29 or in full-time education as part of Opera North’s U30 scheme.

For more details and to book, visit howardassemblyroom.co.uk

Main image: Stone Flowers

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