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Joseph Phibbs

The 2018 Presteigne Festival opens on Thursday 23 August with the Welsh premiere of Joseph Phibbs' exciting new chamber opera Juliana first performed, to rave reviews, at the Cheltenham Music Festival last month.

Laurie Slade's libretto brilliantly transplants August Strindberg's most celebrated play, Miss Julie, to a contemporary Swedish setting, confronting a number of topical issues head-on (including the divide between rich and poor, immigration and the transgression of class, social and sexual boundaries).

As in Strindberg's original, the action takes place during a single day - Midsummer's eve - when the night is short and passions run very high.

In Nova Music Opera's simple but stylish production, soprano Cheryl Enever takes the title role, whilst Kerstin, the housekeeper, is sung by mid-Wales born mezzo Rebecca Afonwy-Jones. Baritone Samuel Pantcheff sings the role of Juan, a morally deficient immigrant servant who lives on the edge emotionally. Richard Williams directs and George Vass, artistic director of the Presteigne Festival, conducts the Nova Music Opera Ensemble.

The performance, at St Andrew's Church, Presteigne, Powys, UK, begins at 8.30pm with a free pre-performance talk at 7.45pm; tickets are available from the Presteigne Festival Box Office on +44 (0)1544 267 800 or via presteignefestival.com - the opera is not suitable for children.

Information: www.novamusic.org.uk

Posted: 9 August 2018

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