2008: The Song of Rhiannon
I think W11 is fantastic and truly an incredible experience for all the kids and parents alike, I am so impressed! Everyone’s commitment is so apparent and really pays off with such an incredible end result. Really enjoyed my Autumn W11 term as did Ava (who is hooked) – we will be back for more.
Roberta Moore Hobbis, parent
We found much to enjoy in Rhiannon and the children were riveted… the standard of singing was excellent, and the seamless way in which one scene followed another was brilliantly contrived and managed.
Ian and Meriel Tegner
Congratulations on another triumph by the W11 Opera Team. We were especially impressed by the training and quality of the chorus singing and the soloists. It was not easy to sing and the vocal line was not supported by the orchestral parts, so it was all the more impressive on the part of the kids and those who trained them.
Louise Grattan, violinist, ex–member of W11 orchestra
I was just thrilled with the performances, particularly on Sunday which I thought were absolutely electric… I was so happy with the whole journey and to be involved with such a lovely group. Ultimately, the whole reason for W11 must surely be about the kids having a great experience and I think…they must have had that, what an exciting thing for them to do, I only wish I had lived in the area when I was a kid!
Mark Bowden, composer, The Song of Rhiannon
Just a note to say how impressed I have been during our collaboration by your combined efforts. You are a formidable production team! Thank you for everything and good luck with your new ventures. Here is to decades more of Opera W11, which has such a positive effect on everyone involved. It is a force for good.
Helen Cooper, librettist, The Song of Rhiannon
It was wonderful to see the energy, the enthusiasm and the professionalism with which the cast interpreted this production and the enjoyment they derived from their involvement…I often talk in School about the importance of individuals working together as a team and W11’s production was a fine example of this…
Mrs Kamaryc, Principal of Queen’s Gate School
Thank you so much for such a wonderful first year at W11. It was fantastic… I had a great time and hope to be able to do it again…
Olivia de Henin, cast member
Just to say I have the greatest admiration for the way you managed the whole thing and I really enjoyed being involved with the production. Congratulations on another success.
Maya Sama, parent
Many congratulations for pulling off such a fabulous and ambitious opera… We really enjoyed it… we ended up sitting right behind David and Samantha Cameron and their kids. Did you know they were there? We had a few words with them and they were so friendly, completely normal and just there to watch the performance.
Linda Walton, audience member
Think you both did a marvellous job. It was a fantastic show. I am certain that the success was due to both your positive and relaxed attitude which believe me stressed out mothers and stressed out children really appreciate.
Tina Villarosa, parent
Thank you so much for organising the whole production! I had such fun this year and none of this would have been possible without all the people behind it.
Ellie Joseph, cast member
…….& thanks again for all the hard work of all involved which made W11’s first show at Riverside such a fine & moving & extraordinary show.
Will Kerley, Stage Director
The Song of Rhiannon was absolutely fantastic and the perfect venue for such a production. What a success!
Lorrie Steptoe, former parent
Thank you again for all the amazing work you do. It’s a great achievement all round but the real “result” for us was seeing the tremendous growth in self-confidence, maturity and self-respect in our dear child.
Thank you so much for everything. I really enjoyed the opera, and Miranda had the most amazing time.
Caroline Ostler, parent
Huge congratulations to YOU!!!! You really have been fantastic throughout. Yes, the feed back from friends, family, colleagues and in particular from my agent, who can be a harsh critic, was warming. I thought the kids were wonderful and an absolute joy to work with.
Helen Cooper, librettist The Song of Rhiannon
It was such a pleasure for me to be part of a great team and gain such amazing insight into the behind the scenes of W11 in a more involved way than previous years.
Varney Polydor, parent
I had a really lovely time working for the company and think the work you all do is brilliant and gives young people a fantastic opportunity and experience they will surely keep with them.
Ben Occhipinti, Assistant Director
Well done for pulling off another good show. The children (and band) did magnificently well with what I thought was an extremely challenging score.
Stuart Hancock, composer
This year was really fun, as always and will remain an unforgettable 3 months. We are still singing the songs at school and we are all talking about what will happen next year! Thank you again for an amazing term!
Capucine de Henin, cast member
I can only say what a fantastic, memorable & stimulating learning curve the whole experience has been for Calypso… I still can’t get over how lucky the ‘little’ ones are to work alongside teenagers & directors & musicians & people who are passionate about what they are sharing.
Tiffany Eaton, parent
I was bowled over by the high standard of performance, movement and singing, design and general professionalism… a brilliant effort by all.
Amanda Holden, librettist
As ever, congratulations on the production – especially this year with the new venue. The club of ‘past composers’ have I think a special insight into the challenges overcome to mount the production, and as ever I am impressed with the quality of the production you work so hard to stage.
Bernard Hughes, composer
Hats off to you for all for bravely commissioning new works every year – long may it continue. As ever production values were high though I confess my favourite bits – both musically and dramatically – were the big chorus/crowd scenes.
Nicky-Jane Kemp, singing teacher, ASB examiner and co-author of “The Language of Song”
Once again, huge thanks for another massively enjoyable W11 Opera. The fact that it was so is even more than usual a tribute to the energy, vitality, enthusiasm and talent that so many people lavish on it with such commitment.
Dr Robert Asher, audience member
It was great to see you at December’s production, which I did enjoy and admire for the lyricism of the music, the excellent costumes and production, and brilliant use of the space.
William Radice, librettist