Into Opera begins 2022 by welcoming five new trustees to its board. George Chambers, Rosenna East, Jaime Morgan Hitchcock, Elizabeth Llewellyn and Harriet Wybor have joined the charity’s five other trustees and its Chief Executive and Artistic Director Genevieve Raghu. Into Opera’s mission is simple – it aims to get more people of all ages to experience and connect with opera through productions, concerts, new music commissions, digital access projects and core education work in schools. 2022 also sees Into Opera launch a 2-year artistic and strategic residency in five primary schools in Norwich. Into Opera is set to work with these schools to help them put creativity at the heart of the curriculum, and to explore how arts and culture can help to break negative cycles in children’s lives. Into Opera has also teamed up with Durham University and a team of academics specialising in creativity in education led by Professor Lynn Newton who will work closely with Into Opera, conducting research and running professional development workshops for teachers.
Into Opera’s Chief Executive and Artistic Director, Genevieve Raghu, said:
“Doubling the size of our board of trustees as we go into 2022 reflects the growth and ambition of Into Opera. Whilst the pandemic has put enormous pressures on us as a charity, the wide range of expertise these new trustees are set to bring to the charity will benefit our work enormously, increasing our creativity and dynamism and helping us to continue offering empowering, high quality and innovative opera experiences for more people.”
Commissioning new work is central to Into Opera’s strategy to develop new audiences and participants for opera. Into Opera’s most recent project has been the commissioning and development of Gobbolino the Witch’s Cat, a new chamber opera for families by composer Patrick Hawes based on the famous children’s book by Ursula Moray Williams. After recent workshops in London with artists including conductor John Andrews, director Genevieve Raghu, choreographer Tim Claydon and a significant group of singers including Katie Bray, Samantha Price, Grant Doyle and Victoria Simmonds, the charity is now looking for co-producers and investors to mount and fully stage the work. Back in 2020 at the height of the pandemic, Into Opera commissioned a new song cycle from composer Will Todd for six primary schools in Norwich. Children worked closely with Into Opera, sharing their stories about the impact of the pandemic on their lives which formed the inspiration for the collection of songs produced. The work was premiered online and has been viewed nearly 5000 times.
Into Opera’s Chair of the Board of Trustees, David Walker, said:
“Today is an exciting moment for Into Opera. We are delighted to welcome five professionals with diverse careers to the charity’s board. Their combined experience will contribute enormously to the charity’s main aim of making opera more accessible for all, and determination to tackle the actual and perceived barriers preventing some people from having the opportunity, means or inclination to experience opera. We look forward to announcing further plans in the near future.”
Into Opera’s new board members join Chair: David Walker and Trustees: Fran Ludden, Charles MacDougall, Nicholas Simpson and Professor David Waugh.