In 2020, we were proud to support Graeae Theatre Company with the development of Errollyn Wallen’s new chamber opera The Paradis Files, screening a documentary about the making of the piece as part of the Festival (You can watch the documentary here). We are delighted to learn that thanks to successful funding, the opera has now gone into full production and is touring the UK this spring with the BBC Concert Orchestra. Andrea Brown will provide musical direction and dramaturgy is by our very own Bill Bankes-Jones.
With previews at Curve Leicester on 8 & 9 April, The Paradis Files will make its official premiere at the Southbank Centre in London on 13 & 14 April before touring to another six venues across the UK.
Maria Theresia von Paradis was a pianist, composer, touring musician, pupil of Salieri and friend of Mozart. Despite her dazzling success story, many of those closest to her looked to profit from her blindness, while others looked to ‘cure’ her. In this new opera, Graeae brings this extraordinary woman out of the shadows to reclaim her place in the spotlight of music history.
Graeae are the UK’s leading disabled-led theatre company, cultivating and championing professional Deaf and disabled artists. Jenny Sealey, Artistic Director and herself Deaf, will direct a diverse cast, with von Paradis played by visually impaired artist Bethan Langford with Maureen Brathwaite, Omar Ebrahim, Andee-Louise Hypolite, Ella Taylor and Ben Thapa completing the cast.
All performances will creatively integrate British Sign Language, audio description and captioning, making the opera accessible to Deaf and disabled audiences.
Errollyn Wallen is an old friend of Tête à Tête, having presented numerous shows at the Festival over the years, in addition to winning numerous awards and writing the new arrangement of Jerusalem for Last Night of the Proms in 2020.
To view all tour dates, venues and booking information, visit: https://graeae.org/our-work/the-paradis-files/
The Paradis Files:
Music — Errollyn Wallen
Director — Jenny Sealey
Musical Director and Conductor — Andrea Brown
Librettist — Nicola Werenowska
Co-Librettist and Original Idea — Selina Mills
Dramaturge — Bill Bankes-Jones