Touring company English Touring Opera (ETO) has announced details of the latest children’s opera that will be streamed on the company’s ETO at Home streaming platform.
The Firebird is a new puppet opera for children by composer Noah Mosley, based on the poem of the same name by poet, children’s author and former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen. It is produced in association with Little Angel Theatre, a London-based theatre that specialises in producing works for children and younger audiences using puppetry.
The Firebird tells the story of Ivan, a young and selfish prince who wants everything for himself. He captures the eponymous Firebird – a mystical creature of Russian folklore – only to release her when he feels a curious sadness in his heart. In thanks she gives him a feather that will help him if he ever needs it.
Ivan travels to an enchanted castle where he meets the free-spirited Princess Vasilisa and the menacing and cold-hearted King Katschei. Will he need the feather here?
Filmed live at the Little Angel Theatre, the story is told through puppetry, song, music and narration; it is suitable for children age 7 and above. The production has a run time of just 25 minutes and is sung in English with English subtitles.
The opera is directed by theatre-maker Valentina Ceschi, with designs by Little Angel Theatre’s Ellie Mills. Soprano Rose Stachniewska sings two roles: the Firebird and Princess Vasilisa. She is joined by tenor Richard Dowling as Prince Ivan and bass-baritone Bradley Travis as King Katschei. The cast will be joined by ETO instrumentalists.
Movement director and puppeteer Aimee Louise Bevan is in charge of the puppets, as well as taking on the part of the Narrator. The film is directed by filmmaker and photographer Isaac Madge.
ETO at Home is free to access; you will need to set up an account to stream the opera. There is a variety of children’s and adult content available to watch.
English Touring Opera has announced that a new digital children’s opera, The Firebird, will be available to stream via ETO at Home from 18 May.