The London Coliseum, the home of the English National Opera (ENO), will reopen to live audiences this November with four performances of Mozart’s ‘Requiem in D Minor’, the national opera company has announced.
Mozart composed part of the ‘Requiem’ in Vienna in late 1791, but it remained unfinished at his death on 5 December the same year; the piece was completed by Austrian composer Franz Xaver Süssmayr. The music for a requiem mass accompanies a requiem, a special service in the Catholic Church for the deceased. This piece was commissioned by Count Franz von Walsegg for a requiem service to commemorate the anniversary of his wife’s death on 14 February.
The productions mark the first to take place at the Coliseum since it closed down in March due to the ongoing Covid-19 health crisis. ENO’s award-winning Chorus and Orchestra will be on stage under the direction of ENO Music Director Martyn Brabbins. They will be joined by four soloists: soprano Elizabeth Llewellyn, mezzo-soprano Dame Sarah Connolly, tenor Ed Lyon and bass-baritone Gerald Finley; the final two replace Toby Spence and Brindley Sherratt, respectively, who are unable to travel due to coronavirus restrictions. The work will be sung in the original Latin.
Annilese Miskimmon, ENO’s artistic director, commented: “It is important to acknowledge the full impact of Covid-19, and the loss we have suffered as a country. Mozart’s ‘Requiem’ is the perfect music to provide a moment of reflection for our audiences, for a collective moment of remembrance. It will be a moment of great happiness for ENO to welcome people back to the London Coliseum again.”
The ENO has introduced one-way systems within the building and only a limited number of tickets are available in order to comply with current rules. If government restrictions mean that socially distanced audiences are not able to watch the performance, the concerts will be livestreamed instead.
The performances take place on 6 and 7 November, with two concerts on both days. Tickets cost between £10 and £30 and are on sale from ENO’s website.
The London Coliseum will open its doors to the public with a series of socially distanced performances of Mozart’s ‘Requiem’.