Bringing the production to life

The Chorus

In 2015 young people from the local area, some of them completely new to opera, auditioned to take part in the project as part of the chorus. 43 were offered the chance to perform on the Glyndebourne stage with the full support of our expert technical teams.

Meet members of the Chorus

Francesca Seaborne

Oscar Morgan

Izzy McNaughton

‘I absolutely relish rehearsals, not only do I have a chance to be with like-minded people sharing this experience, but I’m also learning how to work in a performing company environment and how to conduct myself and sing as a unit. I’ve learned singing techniques from the professional singers that I had only limited knowledge of before.

Being involved in Nothing has surpassed my expectations and I’ve nothing but admiration for the professional singers and the creative team, as I’ve seen first-hand how dedicated they are and just how much hard work goes into a production of this scale’

‘This was my first real experience of opera and working on the production has opened my eyes. It made me realise that opera is an accessible art form with interesting stories and really very enjoyable.

Since being involved with Nothing, a contemporary opera, I have realized even more how similar Musical theatre and opera are. Both performance styles combine acting, singing and movement to tell a story and create a spectacle for the audience, and whilst I still enjoy performing in musical theatre, I would love to experience and take part in many more opera productions in the future’

‘Having read the book (Nothing) a couple of times I feel the libretto and opera adaptation carries the same spirit and message successfully – both exploring concepts of worth, the meaning of life, self-control, peer pressure, group mentality and more. Not only is it a great adaption, but I feel it could also stand on its own as a separate tale.

We've worked hard to bring Nothing to life, and in doing so brought attention to a fascinating story full of concepts that will definitely inspire interesting thoughts and discussions, as well as provide a thoroughly entertaining evening’

Find out more about Glyndebourne Youth Opera and how to take part.

The Orchestra

Music rehearsals

Assistant Conductor Lee Reynolds talks about the music rehearsals that brought together the chorus and orchestra on stage to hear the piece for the first time.

Nothing, is not just giving a platform to talented young singers – amateur instrumentalists will play alongside professional musicians from the Southbank Sinfonia. By virtue of their youth, energy and excellence, Southbank Sinfonia players are ideally placed to act as role-models for the younger musicians in Nothing.

To find out more about Southbank Sinfonia, visit
Southbank Sinfonia logo

Meet members of the Orchestra

The Southbank players will be eager to share their expertise, and generous in their desire to help the younger players into the music. My role will be to help everyone find their way through a challenging new score so that all the players feel confident together and enjoy the music and the collaboration.

Sian Edwards - Conductor

Ioana Forna

2nd Violin

Zoé Saubat


Alice Thompson


Romanian violinist Ioana was taught the violin from the age of seven by her mother, and continued her studies at the Sigismund Toduţă School of Music in Cluj. She later came to London to study at the Royal College of Music, graduating with a first-class bachelor’s degree.

What do you love about classical music?

‘What I love most about classical music and being a musician is the fact that it brings people together. I love being with people and having a relationship through music. It is the best feeling in the world because it brings out other sensations and feelings that in a life without music I think wouldn’t be possible to feel.’

French-born Zoé Saubat obtained her Diplôme d'éducation Musicale from the Conservatoire of Bayonne at the age of 15 before moving to study at the Conservatoire of Paris, simultaneously achieving a bachelor's degree in literature at Sorbonne University. She subsequently moved to London to study at the Royal College of Music of London.

What or who inspired you to become a professional musician?

‘I fell in love with music from a very young age. The first time I came to a music school I didn’t know any instruments except piano, but the class was full so I had to do something else. The first instrument I saw was the cello. My teacher got me to put my hand on the body of the instrument while she was playing and I could feel the vibrations of the instrument in my whole body. I instantly decided to do this for the rest of my life.’

Alice has recently returned from the Netherlands where she spent three years studying for her Master of Music at the Royal Conservatoire of The Hague. She had earlier completed a bachelor’s degree and the TCM Trust's Silver Medal Award at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.

What do you love about classical music?

‘I love the fact that because of music I have met people from all over the world. Even if we do not speak the same language we can communicate through the music we play. I love the fact that music is so versatile and can express absolutely everything, even some emotions that we might find difficult to put into words.’