Glyndebourne gives a glimpse behind the curtain

Credit: Clive Barda
Credit: Clive Barda

When Glyndebourne Tour 2016 is at Norwich Theatre Royal in late November with two of the world’s most beloved operas, it is also offering theatre-goers a chance to glimpse ‘behind the curtain’ with an enlightening introduction to the world of opera.

On stage on November 22 and 25 will be Mozart’s dark comedy Don Giovanni, with Glyndebourne’s first ever production of Puccini’s masterwork Madama Butterfly being presented on November 23 and 26.

Duncan Rock as Don Giovanni  Photo credit: Tristram Kenton
Duncan Rock as Don Giovanni
Photo credit: Tristram Kenton

And on November 24, Paul Rissmann, who has hosted Classics Unwrapped for BBC Radio Scotland and produced a critically-acclaimed series of music discovery concerts for adults called Naked Classics, will take to the stage to reveal the essence of opera for those who are either completely new to the art form, or who are simply curious to find out more.

His fascinating insights will include a look at what goes into putting a production on stage, while at the same time demystifying opera itself with an

inspirational look at Don Giovanni – introducing the key elements of an opera with an extended and fully-staged excerpt from Act II of Don Giovanni which demonstrates how opera’s unique combination of music and words powerfully explores every human emotion.

Paul explained:I’ve been fortunate to devote a considerable part of my career to working with orchestras and arts organisations to develop fresh ways of engaging new audiences. Until now, all my music discovery concerts have been devoted to symphonic repertoire so I’m thrilled to be part of Glyndebourne’s forthcoming Behind the Curtain event. We plan to investigate how opera works, live on stage, with a cast of brilliant singers and an incredible orchestra.”

Paul has developed a fresh concert format for Glyndebourne that will foster a sense of curiosity and feature some remarkable performances. “It will offer audiences old and new a unique opportunity to look ‘behind the curtain’ at Mozart’s Don Giovanni, and I hope it will provide a fascinating night-out at the opera.”

Duncan Rock and Anna Marie Labin in Don Giovanni  Credit: Tristram Kenton
Duncan Rock and Anna Marie Labin in Don Giovanni
Credit: Tristram Kenton

Paul is a classically-trained saxophonist and composer. His career encompasses writing music, talking about music and inspiring others to make and perform their own music and he works with people of all ages and all abilities, from professional musicians to people who have never played or composed before.

A passionate and award-winning music educationalist, he is Animateur for the London Symphony Orchestra and Children’s Composer in Residence for Music in the Round, while his composition Bamboozled was performed at an Olympic Torch relay in the UK by the Philharmonia Orchestra and in Avery Fisher Hall by the New York Philharmonic. His future commissions include a concert suite inspired by Alice in Wonderland for the LSO, and a choral work for 16 singers to be performed to babies aged 6-18 months.

Don Giovanni: Behind the Curtain has been made possible with help from Arts Council England and with additional support from the Clore Duffield Foundation and the Foyle Foundation.

It is at Norwich Theatre Royal on Thursday, November 24, starting at 7.15pm. Tickets are available from the website.