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Trinity Hall Honorary Fellow Alexander Goehr's new opera to be performed in Cambridge

2 August 2010

Alexander GoehrThis Autumn sees the world première production of a new opera by Alexander Goehr, Honorary Fellow of Trinity Hall. Promised End is the first setting of Shakespeare’s King Lear by a British composer, and will tour the UK with English Touring Opera, including a visit to Cambridge in November and a week at the Royal Opera House in October.

Promised End has many Cambridge connections: the libretto was edited by Cambridge Shakespearian scholar Frank Kermode, the conductor is Ryan Wigglesworth, a pupil of Goehr and chosen by the composer himself, and the orchestra is Aurora Orchestra, founded by alumni of Clare College.

Goehr has drawn upon a range of influences in creating what he says will be his last opera. He describes the original ‘kernel’ idea as being inspired by Japanese Noh theatre and dance, also citing the influences such as the King Lear film adaptation of Koznitsev (with Shostakovich's score), Bertolt Brecht, Ezra Pound, and a film by director Miklós Jancsó featuring a Hungarian military band - on which the orchestration is partly based.

Promised End will be performed at Cambridge Arts Theatre on 3 and 6 November, and at the Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House, on 9, 11, 14 and 16 October. It will tour the UK in October and November. For more information visit englishtouringopera.org.uk

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