New world premiere to mark 1066

A specially commissioned opera will make its world premiere this October as part of the ROOT 1066 international contemporary arts festival marking the 950th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.

Wednesday, 4th May 2016, 11:08 am
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 10:00 pm
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PUSH will be performed on Saturday October 1, at the De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill, by soloists from Glyndebourne and musicians drawn from some of the UK’s major orchestras, while 250 children and adults from across 1066 Country will form the accompanying choir.

Written by internationally acclaimed composer Howard Moody, the opera is inspired by the compelling, true story of Simon Gronowski, who was pushed from a train bound for Auschwitz by his mother in 1943.

The narrative of the story also draws on various accounts of those who have experienced refugee and prisoner status, including events of 2016; ‘The Jungle’ in Calais, the mass arrival of Syrian refugees into Europe, and the scenes from the train stations in Budapest as refugees were trapped whilst trying to board trains.

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Sally Lampitt says: “We wanted a strong story which had at its heart all the elements which we felt were relevant and this story does that, whilst taking inspiration from other events from 1066 to 2016. The inspiration for the opera is historic but the delivery will be contemporary and relevant to today. We’ll show you colliding cultures but celebrate diversity and embrace togetherness.”

PUSH is a Battle Festival production in partnership with Glyndebourne and the De La Warr Pavilion for Root 1066 International Festival. There will be a semi-staged version at Battle on October 8.

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