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The Royal Opera House: an insider's view Nigel Bates Tuesday 05 November 2019

This Autumn Study Day has as its subject Covent Garden Opera House. Our lecturer Nigel Bates, describes himself as a musician, speaker, manager, presenter and consultant. He started his musical career in the Band of the Scots Guards, then went on to join the Orchestra of Sadlers Wells Royal Ballet and to hold an appointment as a Professor at London’s Guildhall School of Music and Drama. After a freelance period working with most of the London orchestras and ensembles, Nigel was appointed to the Section Principal Percussion of the Royal Opera House Orchestra, in 1993. Alongside that appointment, he was involved in many other projects for the Royal Opera House. Nigel left the Royal Opera House in 2009 in order to emigrate to Australia, undertaking a number of lecture tours across Australia and Tasmania, and working to establish a community orchestra in Central Queensland. He returned to the UK in 2011, and continued to work as a performer, producer and creative leader. In 2012 he was appointed Music Administrator of The Royal Ballet and continues to perform with all the major London orchestras.

During our study day Nigel will look at the history of the Opera House and the architecture of the building. We will also learn about the tribulations and triumphs of working with the Royal Opera and Royal Ballet companies. We will see several performance video clips with an additional focus on set design, production values and how the digital age has been embraced by the opera and ballet worlds. In addition we will discover the way that daily performances and rehearsals of opera and ballet all fit into this elegant Victorian theatre, the workplace of more than a thousand people. Finally we will look at the way artistic inspirations, the people involved and the unique building all function together to create world class opera and ballet in a unique environment.

The cost for the day is £35. The booking form can be downloaded here.