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Our next street opera!

We are super excited to announce that we have received funding from several amazing funders including Arts Council England and Wandsworth Council towards the Research & Development of our next street opera adaptation and a whole heap of associated activities – school workshops, elderly concerts & artist development. And this time it’s Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love so think love triangles, love potions & silliness all happening on South London high streets today. The adaptation will be written by the team behind our previous street opera adaptations – composer Leo Geyer and librettist Joanna Turner – so they will get cracking over the next few months and we’ll be sure to invite you to a taster sharing later in the year…. Exciting times!!

 

 

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Cosi Fan Tutte Collaboration with Opera Holland Park!

We are thrilled to announce that we have a pop up performance coming up this November in collaboration with Opera Holland Park! We are partnering with the lovely team at OHP to present a 25min section of our adaptation of Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte in the foyer of Chelsea & Westminster Hospital on Wednesday 15th November at 1.30pm. Usually OHP present a simple monthly concert of opera & classical songs here but we convinced them to try something a bit different!

Our Cosi Fan Tutte, first seen back in 2017, was the OffWestEnd Award Finalist for Best Opera Production and gained 5 star reviews from Operissima. With a modern English libretto by Joanna Turner (with new 2023 updates – because social media has changed since then don’t ya know!!) and a new piano arrangement by Leo Geyer, Constella Music as this won’t be a promenade performance but Chelsea & Westminster Hospital have a piano in their foyer!

So come join us on 15th November to see a revival of our Baseless Fabric adaptation in an exciting new space! We can’t wait to see you there!

What amazed me about the Baseless Fabric experience is how naturally this production fits into its locations, a testament to the scrupulous research work which must have gone on beforehand, as well as the quality of everyone’s performances.- , Operissima
This production is tremendous fun- , LondonTheatre1.com

 

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Announcing the Cast of Carmen!

We are delighted to announce the cast of Carmen:

Felicity Buckland – Carmen (Arcola Theatre)

Felicity Buckland

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

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Cast Announced for our Carmen R&D!

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.

Our work will culminate in a free sharing at 4.30pm at Lantern Arts Centre. If you’d like to attend you can sign up for tickets here. Read more

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Carehomes Carpark Die Fledermaus!

Die Fledermaus Arcola Theatre

David Horton as Eisenstein & James McOran-Campbell as Falke

Despite the grey January days this particularly bleak January we have something very exciting to look forward to this summer! With the hugest thanks to the Postcode Community Trust, we are thrilled that later this year when the weather warms up, Covid restrictions are lifted a little and hopefully many carehome residents will have received their vaccine, we are able to offer South West London carehomes a FULL PERFORMANCE of our acclaimed re-imagined Die Fledermaus (4 stars – The Guardian)!

As with our recent carehome concerts, these performances will again take place in the carpark or garden of the care homes to keep residents, staff and artists safe in these changing challenging times. And we are thrilled that this time rather than just concerts we can offer a full performance of Die Fledermaus giving residents and staff an opportunity to enjoy the full story of Strauss’ operetta. Read more

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What is Grimeborn?

The Arcola (Dalston)

Grimeborn is the annual opera festival at one of London’s coolest theatres, The Arcola. Over the last ten years, the festival has become the home for adventurous takes on familiar classics, resurrections of forgotten gems, and premieres of brand new works. This year there are no less than 16 productions. There are £12 tickets available for each one. It’s cheap, it’s accessible – and it’s mindblowing when you realise how much there is to the opera world. 

Don’t take our word for it. Here are some examples that we can’t wait for:

Bringing back unknown operas to life – like Scott Joplin’s Treemonisha

Somehow Scott Joplin, the ‘King of Ragtime’, is only known for his famous piano tune The Entertainer. But then you hear about an American opera-musical like this, entirely ahead of its time, entirely relevant still – and with a title like Treemonisha… well, you just kinda have to go!

See also Aaron Copland’s Twelve Poems by Emily Dickinson.

Radical takes on opera classics – like Die Fledermaus

Our very own artistic director Jo Turner and composer Leo Geyer return with a new take of Strauss’ classic. Working with designer Marina Hadjilouca and lighting designer Jack Weir, Baseless Fabric will bring our street opera indoors for two performances only, for an entirely new take on our style of relevant, irreverent opera re-imagining. Find out more here. Read more

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2018, what a year…

What a year 2018 was for Baseless Fabric! We began the year with the thrilling news that we were the first recipient of the Wimbledon Foundation’s prestigious new Arts and Community Engagement Fund for our new street opera project Die Fledermaus!

This project, with the additional support of Arts Council England, Merton Council and the Samuel Gardner Memorial Trust, encompasses the creative adaptation of an opera for the high street, the free professional performances, workshops for both schools and elderly lunch clubs and two school parallel productions! So while the project has similarities to our previous street operas Drifting Dragons and Cosi Fan Tutte, it is also bigger and better than ever! Read more

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Fancy a sneak peek of our new street opera?

 

This event is in the past. Check out our upcoming productions page for what’s coming up!

The Production

Die Fledermaus is a hugely fun, often silly story with some brilliant characters and very catchy tunes. Die Fledermaus means ‘The Bat’ but in our modern version Bat Man may play a role instead! Funded by the Wimbledon Foundation’s new Arts and Community Engagement Fund (ACE), Arts Council EnglandMerton Council and the Samuel Gardner Memorial Trust, our Die Fledermaus production follows on from the success of our two previous Merton Street Operas Drifting Dragons and Cosi Fan Tutte. Like these previous productions, Die Fledermaus has been cut to approximately an hour, with a new modern English accessible libretto, and with the music re-written for 3 instruments suitable for promenade performance. The final production will take place in summer 2019 with scenes popping up along the high street and with the audience free to follow our characters down the street or just watch one scene. The music has some waltzes this time round so hope you’ll be waltzing down the high street with us!

The Free Sharing

On the 29th November at Wimbledon Theatre Studio we will be presenting a few scenes from our new adaptation, discussing our work and asking for your feedback (duration approximately an hour). If you would like to join us please click to book your ticket now. Tickets are FREE but limited so please register.

 

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Announcing the Cast of Die Fledermaus

We are pleased to announce the cast of Die Fledermaus!

Claire Wild

Claire Wild

Claire Wild attended the Royal Northern College of Music‚ sponsored by the Peter Moores Foundation and the Musicians Benevolent Fund. She won the Webster Booth Award‚ the James Oncken Song Prize and the Frost Brownson Award.      

Highlights in recent seasons include Lilli Vanessi / Katharine in Kiss Me, Kate and Elle La voix humaine for Welsh National Opera, Susanna Le nozze di Figaro for Regents Opera and Petra in A Little Night Music for Opera Project at West Green House, Welsh National Opera as Emma in Khovanshchina and Garsington Opera as Caridad The Skating Rink, a newly commissioned opera by David Sawer. Read more

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From a full orchestra to just 3 instruments…

Composer Leo Geyer talks about re-writing the music for our Die Fledermaus adaptation:

Re-imagining a 2-hour opera with 10 roles, chorus and full orchestra down to 1 hour, 4 roles, no chorus and 3 instruments, and to be performed in promenade – is an exciting challenge for any composer! The first hurdle to overcome is which 3 instruments to choose… Read more