Two operas added to Glyndebourne's virtual festival

Glyndebourne has announced the next two opera titles in its virtual festival, Glyndebourne Open House. They will be Barber’s Vanessa and Handel’s Rinaldo.

By Phil Hewitt
Monday, 1st June 2020, 10:53 pm
Glyndebourne: photographer Clive Nichols
Glyndebourne: photographer Clive Nichols

Glyndebourne Open House enjoyed a successful launch on May 24 with a broadcast of Michael Grandage’s 2012 production of The Marriage of Figaro that attracted nearly 60,000 views. Audiences tuned in from all around the world, Australia to Bangladesh, Singapore to Senegal, with many enjoying the opportunity to recreate the Glyndebourne Festival experience at home by dressing up, preparing picnics and sharing the experience with friends and family.

Next, on June 7, is Nicholas Hytner’s staging of Così fan tutte. The opera will be available to watch on the Classic FM Facebook page, as well as Glyndebourne’s website and YouTube channel. Conductor Ivan Fischer teases artful performances from an outstanding international cast that includes Topi Lehtipuu (Ferrando), Luca Pisaroni (Guglielmo), Miah Persson (Fiordiligi) and Anke Vondung (Dorabella). Visit

Next in the season is Vanessa at 5pm on June 14 and on demand for one week. An operatic thriller from the age of Hitchcock, Samuel Barber’s Pulitzer Prizewinning opera Vanessa boasts one of the 20th century’s most beautiful scores. Glyndebourne’s 2018 production was directed by Keith Warner and stars Emma Bell as Vanessa, Edgaras Montvidas as Anatol and Virginie Verrez as Erika. Jakub Hrůša conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

Also coming up is Rinaldo, 5pm on June 21 and on demand for one week

Robert Carsen’s riotous schoolroom staging of Rinaldo is well on its way to becoming a Glyndebourne classic, bringing out all the energy and excess in Handel’s first opera for the London stage.

The 2011 live recording stars Sonia Prina as Rinaldo, Anett Fritsch as Almirena, Brenda Rae as Armida and Luca Pisaroni as Argante. Ottavio Dantone conducts the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.

Glyndebourne is recognised internationally as one of the great opera houses; a reputation that stems from a passion for artistic excellence encapsulated in founder John Christie’s insistence on doing ‘not the best we can do but the best that can be done anywhere’.

John and his opera singer wife, Audrey Mildmay, founded the Glyndebourne Festival in 1934. In 1968 the Glyndebourne Tour was established to bring opera to new audiences across the country and create opportunities for talented young singers.

Today Glyndebourne is a 12-month operation. The Festival runs from May to August with a programme of six operas in a 1,200-seat opera house. The annual Tour takes place from October to December. The second Glyndebourne Opera Cup singing competition took place in March 2020. A widely respected education programme is active year-round staging new work and delivering projects to enhance the understanding and enjoyment of opera.

Together the Festival and Tour present 120 performances annually to an audience of 150,000 with many more people experiencing Glyndebourne’s work through its yearly programme of cinema screenings and free online streamings. Glyndebourne has pioneered specialist recordings to share its work with a global audience through these channels and as part of this mission to reach new audiences, also offers reduced-price tickets to under-30s.

Since its founding, Glyndebourne has remained financially independent and, whilst receiving valued Arts Council support for the Tour and education work, the Festival receives no public subsidy. As a registered charity, our work is funded by Box Office income, our Members and supporters.


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