Glyndebourne firsts

Glyndebourne’s commissions and premières

  • 1938 Macbeth (Verdi) – first professional production in England
  • 1946 The Rape of Lucretia (Britten) – World première – production by Britten’s group (later known as the English Opera Group) but rehearsed and performed at Glyndebourne
  • 1947 Albert Herring (Britten) – World première – production by English Opera Group at Glyndebourne
  • 1950 Ariadne auf Naxos (R Strauss) – Version with preceding play Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme translated (for this Glyndebourne production at the Edinburgh Festival)by Miles Malleson
  • 1951 Idomeneo (Mozart) – first professional production in England
  • 1953 The Rake’s Progress (Stravinsky) – first professional stage performance in Britain. Mounted by Glyndebourne at the Edinburgh Festival
  • 1954 Arlecchino (Busoni) – first stage production in Britain
  • 1957 Der Schauspieldirektor (Mozart) – story and spoken dialogue newly devised for this production after G Stephanie by Hanns Hammelmann and Michael Rose at Glyndebourne’s instigation
  • 1960 La Voix Humaine (Poulenc) – first performance in Britain. Mounted by Glyndebourne at the Edinburgh Festival
  • 1961 Elegy for Young Lovers (Henze) – world première in original language
  • 1962 L’Incoronazione di Poppea (Monteverdi) – realisation by Raymond Leppard. First professional production in England
  • 1967 L’Ormindo (Cavalli) – so far as is known this was the first time L’Ormindo had been performed anywhere since 1644. Arranged by Raymond Leppard.
  • 1970 La Calisto (Cavalli) – so far as is known this was the first time La Calisto had been performed since 1651. Arranged by Raymond Leppard.
  • 1970 The Rising of the Moon (Maw) – world première. First opera to be specially commissioned by Glyndebourne
  • 1972 Il Ritorno d’Ulisse (Monteverdi) – According to Kobbe’s Complete Opera Book this was the first time the opera had been staged in Britain. Certainly first performance of Raymond Leppard’s version.
  • 1973 The Visit of the Old Lady (Von Einem) – first performance in England
  • 1974 Intermezzo (R Strauss) – first professional stage performance in England.
  • 1975 Der Freischutz (Weber) – first performance in an English translation, which was made for Glyndebourne by John Cox and David Parry. Performed by Glyndebourne Touring Opera.
  • 1983 The Love for Three Oranges (Prokofiev) – first performance in an English translation, which was made for Glyndebourne by Tom Stoppard. Performed by Glyndebourne Touring Opera.
  • 1984 Where the Wild Things Are (Knussen) – performed by Glyndebourne at the National Theatre. ( Wild Things was originally commissioned from Knussen by Brussels Operain 1978. It was produced for them in an incomplete form in 1980. In 1982 London Sinfonietta gave a concert performance of the revised but still incomplete work. Glyndebourne then commissioned the completion of the work as premiered in 1984)
  • 1984 Higglety Pigglety Pop! (Knussen) – World première. Commissioned by the BBC for Glyndebourne and performed in an incomplete edition in 1984 by Glyndebourne Touring Opera. Performed complete in the Glyndebourne Festival, 1985.
  • 1986 Porgy and Bess (Gershwin) – first British production in Britain. (Previously toured to Britain by an American company which appeared at the Stoll Theatre 1952-3according to Kobbe)
  • 1987 The Electrification of the Soviet Union (Osborne) – World première. Commissioned for Glyndebourne by theBBC. Performed by the Glyndebourne Touring Opera.
  • 1990 New Year (Tippett) – European première. Commissioned by Glyndebourne, Houston Grand Opera and the BBC receiving its world première at Houston Grand Opera,1989.
  • 1991 La Clemenza di Tito (Mozart) – with newly composed secco recitatives by Stephen Oliver.
  • 1993 Beatrice et Benedict (Berlioz) – Glyndebourne at the South Bank in concert. Sung in the original French but with a new English translation by John Wells specially commissioned for these performances.
  • 1993 Die Lustige Witwe (Lehar) – Glyndebourne at the South Bank in concert. Sung in the original German but with new English narration by Tom Stoppard specially commissioned for these performances (Premièred in Birmingham)
  • 1993 Cornet Christoph Rilke’s Song of Love and Death (Matthus) – British premiere. Glyndebourne Touring Opera.
  • 1994 The Second Mrs Kong (Birtwistle) – World première. Commissioned by Glyndebourne. Performed by Glyndebourne Touring Opera.
  • 1995 Ermione (Rossini) – first staging in the UK.
  • 1997 Misper (Lunn)