Top opera-tunity for schoolchildren
OLYMPIC talent has inspired scores of schoolchildren who are preparing for the curtain up on a grand opera.
Heart In A Box has a cast of 60 pupils from senior schools across Louth.
And, among the talented team that helped them put the show together were designer Rhiannon Newman-Brown and choreographer, Natasha Khamjani who came straight to Louth from the finale of the Paralympic Games.
Both had worked with Danny Boyle in orchestrating the epic ceremonies at the start of both the Olympic and Paralympic Games in London.
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The rest of the team was made up of three musicians and two opera singers from Garsington Opera, one of Britain's leading opera festivals based at the Wormsley Estate in Buckinghamshire.
Their team will be working with students from King Edward VI, Cordeaux and Monks' Dyke Tennyson Academy schools in Louth, over the next three months to make the opera.
The pupils will be guided through the entire process of creating an opera, including singing, dancing, performing and design.
The project aims to support their creative arts studies and provide them with the experience of putting on a professional production.
Rhiannon said: "Working with Danny Boyle it was about what he wanted and we made it happen. This is more collaborative and full of the students' own ideas. It is all about their creative experience."
The project, funded by East Lindsey District Council, builds on the links the council made with Garsington Opera since the SO Festival, when opera was beamed live to a beach for the very first time.
Karen Gillingham, creative consultant for Garsington Opera Education, said: "Heart In A Box provides an opportunity for teenagers to have a first-hand experience of opera.
"They will work with a professional director, composer and designer to devise and rehearse the show which they will then perform alongside professional singers and musicians.
"The music they will sing (composed specifically for their age range), will often be joined at the same time by an opera singer performing music written by Vivaldi nearly 300 years ago – exposing them to a new sound world."
The director said: "This is a vital way of bringing opera alive for children, young people and their families, breaking down the barriers often associated with opera."
Head teacher at Cordeaux Peter Kubicki said: "This is a brilliant opportunity for pupils in Louth to experience a memorable, different, collaborative and high quality activity.
"It is wonderful that local schools will be working together for the benefit of young people. We are excited to be working with Garsington Opera, which is nationally acclaimed."
Cordeaux head of music Susie Bell said: "In terms of confidence they have come on leaps and bounds. It is great to develop their dance and drama, as well as the music and great for them to be involved in a professional performance."
Prior to attending the final performances of Heart In A Box at Louth Playgoers' Riverhead Theatre, in Louth, children from primary schools in the area will have the chance to participate in workshops with the Garsington Opera team.
The show will be performed for parents and guests at Riverhead Theatre, in Louth, on November 15, at 7pm.