Albert Herring | University of Oxford

Albert Herring

St Peter's College Opera
9 Nov 2016 to 12 Nov 2016
19:30
St Peter's College
New Inn Hall Street
Oxford
OX1 2DL

Chapel

Drama
£8 / £15
Yes
Recommended

In the small fictional village of Loxford Spring has arrived. Lady Billows, an elderly autocrat who rules over the village with an iron fist of virtue and morality wants to elect a May Queen for this year’s festival. The village girls have, however, been rather liberal in their skirt lengths this year and are eschewed for their impropriety. Finding no other option she proceeds to elect a May King. You’ll never guess what happens next!

Britten’s second chamber opera was composed just a year after its predecessor, The Rape of Lucretia, in 1947. Yet the contrast in style and subject matter could not be greater: instead of a tragedy based on a tale from Roman antiquity, Albert Herring is a comic opera set in the imaginary East Suffolk town of Loxford at the turn of the 20th century. The score contains some of Britten’s wittiest musical invention and his gifts for parody and caricature, already evident in Peter Grimes, are given full reign. However, the work is far from being mere farce: Albert is a sympathetic and credible figure who, tied to his mother’s apron-strings and frustrated by small-town pieties, embarks on a debauched ‘rake’s progress’, a theme fully in keeping with the composer’s favourite subject of the loss of innocence. Is Albert virtuous, yes or no?

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CREW:

PRODUCER: CHRIS BURR
DIRECTORS: PETER THICKETT | FREDERICK WAXMAN
MUSICAL DIRECTOR: RORY GREEN
MARKETING MANAGER: LAURA GRACE SIMPKINS
SET DESIGNER: CATRIONA BOLT
COSTUME DESIGNER: GEORGIA CRUMP
REPITETEUR: GEORGE NEEDHAM

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CAST:

ALBERT HERRING: MAXIMILIAN LAWRIE
LADY BILLOWS: MARGARET MARCHETTI
FLORENCE PIKE: SIAN HAYES
MR GEDGE: WILL PATE
MISS WORDSWORTH: TARA MANSFIELD
SID: IVO ALMOND
NANCY: LILA CHRISP
MRS HERRING: JOHANNA HARRISON
SUPERINTENDENT BUDD: JOHN LEE
MR UPFOLD: JACK GRANBY
CIS: ELLIE BRAY
EMMIE: SOFIA KIRWAN-BAEZ
HARRY: HARRY GANT