This summer, young people from Brighton will perform a new piece of musical theatre based on Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni .
A Glyndebourne Education project in association with Brighton Dome, local youth charity AudioActive and the Brighton Youth Offending Service, Johnny Boy will be staged at the Pavilion Theatre on Sunday 10 July.
The one-off show has been devised by teenagers aged 14-19 in collaboration with an expert artistic team from Glyndebourne.
Glyndebourne Education worked with young people from the Brighton Youth Offending Service, who in the past have been vulnerable to exclusion. Some of the participants acted as mentors for each other during the creative process.
Using the story of Don Giovanni as a starting point, the show’s stars explored the opera’s themes and the issues it raises in a modern-day context. They also studied elements of Mozart’s score.
Led by director Brendan Murray, music director Dominic Harlan, designer Tony Sinnett, composer Al Start and music producer Jack Kingslake, the participants have been helped to develop their skills in leadership, communication, teamwork and IT, through the use of studio equipment and various performance techniques.
Johnny Boy builds on Glyndebourne Education’s links with the Brighton Youth Offending Service, a relationship which first formed during the development of the critically acclaimed 2010 community youth opera Knight Crew . This production was also the subject of a BBC documentary, Gareth Malone Goes to Glyndebourne , broadcast last year.
Every year, Glyndebourne Education works with either young offenders from East Sussex or prisoners at HMP Lewes, to develop creative responses to an opera currently in repertoire at the Glyndebourne Festival.
Johnny Boy will be staged at Brighton’s Pavillion Theatre on Sunday 10 July from 7pm. Tickets cost £6 (£3 concessions and under-18s) and are available to book from Brighton Dome: “http://www.brightondome.org/events/Johnny-Boy/4261”:
Notes for editors:
The Glyndebourne Festival was founded in 1934 by John Christie and his opera singer wife, Audrey Mildmay. They began with two Mozart operas, but the repertoire has expanded to include works from the baroque to the contemporary. New works premiered at Glyndebourne include two by Benjamin Britten, 13 new commissions on the main stage and over 20 more through the Education programme.
Crucially, Glyndebourne has remained financially independent since 1934. Although it receives valued Arts Council support for the Tour and some educational work, the Festival receives no public subsidy. Glyndebourne is a registered charity, funded by box office income, its members and supporters.
Today the Festival runs from May to August with a programme of six operas in a world-class 1,200-seat opera house. Together with Glyndebourne on Tour it presents about 120 performances each year to a total audience of around 150,000. Its resident orchestras are the London Philharmonic Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. Glyndebourne began the Tour in 1968 to bring opera to new audiences and create performance opportunities for young singers in the Glyndebourne Chorus. As part of Glyndebourne’s commitment to developing new talent, the Chorus plays a vital role in discovering and training young singers. As part of Glyndebourne’s mission to reach new audiences, it has maintained a widely respected Education programme since 1986. Glyndebourne also offers reduced-price tickets to under-30s for selected performances, and has pioneered using recordings to open up its work to a worldwide audience through broadcasts, cinema screenings, DVDs and internet streaming.
Chandra Fifield, Press Officer
Glyndebourne Press Office