A documentary, produced almost entirely in quarantine, exploring creative processes, isolation and digital connections.
Generously supported by the Nicholas John TrustDirected by Alisdair Kitchen and Produced by David Sulkin.In partnership with Second Movement, with additional assistance from the Librettist Network
In 2018 the National Opera Studio commissioned 12:40; 12 new arias by 12 composers and 12 librettists for 12 singers, to mark its 40th anniversary year. Two years later, a follow up project, 12:42, was conceived, but development came to a halt due to the Coronavirus and planned performances of the new works were cancelled. Reacting swiftly and determined not to abandon the project, 12:42 turned digital.
The National Opera Studio is delighted to present 12:42, a unique film documenting the collaborative creative process of producing brand new operas under coronavirus lockdown conditions.
Produced almost entirely in quarantine, the documentary follows the ambitious journey of 42 creative people – comprising the National Opera Studio’s Young Artist singers and répétiteurs, in close collaboration with some of today’s most exciting composers and librettists from around the world — to create eleven new opera arias entirely through online work and digital media.
Each singer was partnered with an exciting, diverse, handpicked team: a composer, a librettist and a pianist. Together, they transformed ideas drawn from the singer’s life and experience into a centrepiece aria for an opera yet to be written. The arias, which have since been filmed, are designed to demonstrate the individuality of each singer's vocal talents, and will be used in their audition repertoire for years to come.
Along with filmed performances of each aria, the documentary will première at 7.00pm GMT on OperaVision on 17 November, contextualised with information including biographies and full synopses of the imagined operas from which the arias are taken.
Music: Alex Mills
Words: Camilo Menjura
Artistic Advisor: Ruth Mariner
Performed by: Julieth Lozano (soprano) and Bradley Wood (piano).
Music: Mira Calix
Words: Sophie Rashbrook
Performed by: Alexandra Lowe (soprano) and Mairi Grewar (piano).
Music: Emma Ruth Richards
Words: Nicola Chalmers
Performed by: Eliza Boom (soprano) and Somi Kim (piano)
Music and Words: Hilda Paredes
Performed by: Luis Aguilar (tenor) and Alberto Rosado Carabias (piano)
Music: Gavin Higgins
Words: Francesca Simon
Performed by: Frederick Jones (tenor) and Juliane Gallant (piano)
Music: Shinuh Lee
Words: Eun-E Goh
Performed by: Kyu Choi (baritone) and Mairi Grewar (piano)
Music: Tom Randle
Words: Nikki Racklin
Performed by: Msimelelo Mbali (bass) and Mairi Grewar (piano)
Music: Ellen Sargen
Words: CN Lester
Performed by: Ella Taylor (soprano) and Bradley Wood (piano)
Music: Cheryl Frances-Hoad
Words: Jeanne Pansard-Besson
Performed by: Samantha Oxborough (mezzo-soprano) and Juliane Gallant (piano)
Music: Alex Ho
Words: Theophilus Kwek
Performed by: Shengzhi Ren (tenor) and Derek Clark (piano)
Music and Words: Alex Groves
Performed by: Benson Wilson (baritone) and Bradley Wood (piano)