Our After School Opera Club are gearing up for their own final production inspired by Carmen but with their own ideas for new songs, spoken scenes and characters. They’ve worked so hard in their weekly sessions since January evolving these ideas as well as improving their acting and singing skills and we are so proud of how they’ve all developed! As part of their work they recently had a brilliant session with set designer Sorcha Corcoran and costume designer Hannah Williams where they learnt more about theatre design and shared their ideas about what their show should look like with the designers. I think every production of Carmen should have a garden party and a balloon of hate, don’t you?! Read more
Baseless Fabric will present 10 free street performances of Carmen reimagined this summer on the high streets of South London from 4th – 21st August 2022.
The piece will also be presented at the Arcola Theatre from 9th – 13th August 2022 as part of Grimeborn Festival. Read more
We are delighted to announce the cast of Carmen:
Felicity Buckland – Carmen (Arcola Theatre)
Felicity trained at the RNCM and on English National Opera’s Opera Works programme.
Recent solo appearances include Kasturbai, Glass Satyagraha for ENO, Wellgunde Wagner The Rhinegold for Birmingham Opera and Nicklausse, Offenbach The Tales of Hoffmann for Kentish Opera. Previous ENO highlights include cover roles in The Valkyrie, The Mask of Orpheus (Birtwistle), Orpheus in the Underworld, Carmen, and Olivier-Award winning Porgy and Bess. Elsewhere she has sung the title roles in Carmen (Kentish Opera) and La Cenerentola (High Time Opera); Rosina The Barber of Seville (Opera South) Rossweisse Die Walküre (Grange Park Opera); Olga Eugene Onegin (Opera Up Close, Opera South East, Mid Wales Opera (cover)); Dorabella Così Fan Tutte (Baseless Fabric Theatre); Cherubino The Marriage of Figaro, and 3rd Lady The Magic Flute (both Opera Up Close). She is a regular extra chorister for The Royal Opera House, ENO and Opera North.
Felicity is in demand for solo oratorio, music education projects and consort/session work, and is delighted to be a regular part of Baseless Fabric’s Learning and Participation Projects. Read more
Following the success of September 2020 and May 2021, we returned last week for a third tour of care homes to bring some musical joy to residents and staff across Merton and Wandsworth. It was a glorious, sunny week with only one wet morning – a miracle considering the unpredictability of the British weather! Not that the rain stopped us! Concert wellies were adorned and our incredible performers Claire Wild and Carla Ruaro didn’t bat an eyelid, performing their 7th well received concert of the week under a canopy during the showers.
The repertoire, put together by Claire and Carla, took us around the world from British folk songs, to German arias, to music from the Amazon Rainforest! It was a perfect balance of famous favourites and introductions to something new.
“Everyone is so lovely and professional. The music is superb. Loved it all. The residents wanted them to come back next week!” Read more
We are just one week away from our carehome concerts. Thanks to the support of the Postcode Community Trust, Soprano Claire Wild and Pianist Carla Ruaro and a small team will be bringing an hour of opera and musical joy to the gardens and carparks of 8 carehomes across Wandsworth and Merton. Read more
Our After School Club at Links Primary is now well underway and the school hall is filled with the sounds of Toreador and Habanera sung by our wonderful group of Years 4-6 and our brilliant workshop leaders Bim and Ruth.
A few weeks ago Fizz Buckland, who plays Carmen in our professional production this summer, also joined the group for a few games, to discuss the characters and story, and of course to sing! So the group were able to hear what her (very loud!) voice sounds like and ask her questions about what it’s like to be an opera singer.
The group will be creating their own new songs and scenes inspired by Carmen over the coming months leading to their own performance this summer. Congrats to everyone involved for their hard work this term and we look forward to seeing you again after the Easter holidays!
We are thrilled that thanks to an extremely kind grant from Postcode Community Trust we are able to provide more concerts for carehomes in Merton & Wandsworth this spring!
Our highly successful concerts have taken place in the gardens and carparks of carehomes throughout the pandemic to spread a little musical joy to residents and staff. Our 2021 concerts reached 137 residents and 30 staff at 8 local carehomes with 98% reporting an improvement in mental wellbeing! So if you run a local carehome and would like one of our FREE concerts this May please get in touch!!
The support from Postcode Community Trust, which is a grant giving trust funded by players of People’s Postcode Lottery, will also cover some of our core costs this spring and as a small organisation we are so hugely grateful for this support. The hugest thanks to all the players of People’s Postcode Lottery for helping us to improve the wellbeing of local older people through music!
Since the start of term the hallways have been ringing with the Habanera at Links Primary School as our latest community project gets underway.
Each week a group of children attend an After School Opera Club run by Baseless Fabric and in partnership with Jigsaw4U. Our fantastic facilitators Bimpe Adeyemi and Ruth Routledge are working with the children to teach them about Bizet’s Carmen, and support them in creating and writing their own show inspired by the opera.
The children will work with Bimpe and Ruth over the next two terms singing, acting, writing and devising together. Their work will culminate in a performance in July for family, friends, teachers and for the team of performers and creatives working on Baseless Fabric’s professional production of Carmen.
Tomorrow marks the start of our research and development workshop for our latest re-imagining, Carmen. This follows on from our acclaimed Die Fledermaus (4 stars The Guardian & The Stage) and Cosi Fan Tutte (Best Opera Production Finalist, OffWestEnd Awards). Over the course of 3 days we will be exploring our version of the piece, with a new modern English libretto by Joanna Turner, and score for violin, accordion and bassoon arranged by Leo Geyer.
Following on from our success of Die Fledermaus we have been busy reimagining Carmen and this is your first chance to take a peek at what we’ve been doing!
On 4th November at 4.30 pm we will be showing selected scenes from our reimagined Carmen production. This is a FREE event but we have limited capacity so if you are interested in attending please submit the following form and we will confirm your seats. Read more