Opera Scotland

Scots and Gaelic and Baroque Opera

Posted 29 Jul 2018

A pioneering project to perform a baroque opera in Scots and Gaelic will be taking place this summer with a new production of Purcell’s Dido & Aeneas sung completely in Scots and Gaelic.

 The Scots Opera Project are fast building a reputation for these ground-breaking productions; having previously created, performed and toured Charpentier's Actéon, La Descente D'Orphée Aux Enfers and Mozart’s Magic Flute, sung entirely in Scots. This year the Scots Opera Project will introduce Gaelic alongside Scots.

 Scots and Gaelic may not be the most obvious choice of language for an opera performance, but David Douglas, a tenor and the creative force behind the project feels it works very well, “Operas are performed in the native languages of countries all over the world. Therefore when performing an opera in Scotland, I felt that the use of Scots and Gaelic would work; it would bring it to life in an entirely different way for both performers and audience.”

The new translation has been created by the National Library of Scotland’s and Creative Scotland’s newly appointed Scots Scriever Dr Michael Dempster and award winning Gaelic Writer and Poet Marcas Mac an Tuairneir. In August the production will be workshopped and performed at the Harbour Arts Centre in Irvine by some of  Scotland’s finest opera singers, who have all received expert coaching from renowned Gaelic singer Joy Dunlop.

 The project also involves community engagement, with a chorus composed of amateur performers who take up a weeks residency at the Harbour Arts Centre in order to refine and hone the performance – and their language skills.  It is a unique opportunity to learn from professional musicians and singers about vocal and dramatic interpretation in opera and to be involved with music rehearsals, vocal technique sessions and acting and movement sessions. Leading the course is singer, vocal coach and director David Douglas. David has put together an outstanding team of coaches and singers, who will work with singers from the local community and perform the main roles in the world premiere of this Scots and Gaelic production of Dido and Aeneas.

 The performances will take place at 2.30pm & 7.30pm on the 11th of August at the Harbour Arts Centre in Irvine. Tickets are £10 and available via www.scotsoperaproject.com

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