Project information

Classical Opera Artistic Programme 2016

In 2016 we continue our ground-breaking 27-year project MOZART 250, contextualising Mozart's life, work and influences chronologically. We will nurture exceptional young singers through far-reaching training and performance opportunities, and create world-class recordings of Mozart's operas.

January 2016 - December 2016

Charity information

Classical Opera

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  • Need


    Although Mozart is arguably the greatest composer ever to have lived, many of his works are seldom performed. Only a handful of operas have made it into the popular canon, while others - such as the unfinished opera Zaide - are not widely known, leaving a gap in our understanding of Mozart's development as a composer. While bringing this work to new audiences, we nurture outstanding young singers and help them to launch successful careers, with in-depth rehearsals and prestigious performance opportunities


    Through MOZART 250 we provide a unique contextualisation of Mozart's compositions, helping our audiences to understand how Mozart was influenced by the society in which he lived and worked. In 2016 we will present the major works of 1766 in four landmark performances, undertake two exciting recording projects to engage audiences with previously neglected repertoire, and provide young artists with valuable coaching and performance opportunities.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To present an exciting retrospective of the year 1766, the 2nd year of our ambitious MOZART project.


    » Present '1766 - a retrospective' at Wigmore Hall in January 2016. This concert will include works by Mozart, Haydn and others, all premiered in 1766.
    » Perform Haydn's La canterina at the Haydn Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria (as part of a special residency) and at Wigmore Hall, both in September 2016

    Performances of a consistently high standard will demonstrate the success of this project. Ongoing audience interaction will illustrate success in engaging people with new music.

    Aim 2

    To support, nurture and develop world-class young singers at the beginning of their careers.


    » Specialist coaching and mentoring from our Artistic Director and conductor, Ian Page, and a bursary to contribute towards ongoing training.
    » The opportunity to perform and record alongside internationally renowned singers and orchestral musicians, providing valuable experience and exposure.
    » Extended rehearsal periods, allowing the artists time to explore their roles in detail while benefiting from the experience of the Artistic Director.
    » A dedicated Young Artists project (April 2016), in which all main roles and the chorus will be sung by young singers at the outset of their careers.

    Previous Associate Artists have gone on to enjoy successful careers on the operatic stage, working with the Royal Opera House, English National Opera and Glyndebourne among others.

    Aim 3

    Produce world-class recordings of the music of Mozart and his contemporaries.


    » In February 2016 award-winning British soprano Sophie Bevan will record her debut solo recital disc with Ian Page and the Orchestra of Classical Opera
    » As part of our Mozart Opera Cycle, we will record Mozart's Zaide with Signum Records. The cast includes former Associate Artist, Allan Clayton.

    We hope to receive positive, high-profile reviews from leading industry publications, as we have done for our previous recordings.

  • Impact


    MOZART 250 offers people the chance to understand Mozart's music as part of Europe's rich musical history. We hope that, through understanding the context in which Mozart lived and worked, audiences will find new enjoyment in his music as well as discovering previously unknown works. We hope that listeners will also find new dimensions in our recordings. Our work with young artists will help to launch the careers of singers who will go on to perform both in the UK and on the international stage.


    The primary risk to these projects is lack of funding. However, we have solid finance management procedures in place and are confident that we can fund these projects through a variety of income streams, including grants and donations. Besides funding, there is a risk that an artist may fall ill and be unable to perform. For concerts, we would draw on our industry network to find a suitable replacement. For a recording, we have budgeted contingency to allow for over-dubbing at a later date.


    Donors who support these projects will receive regular progress updates throughout the year. In addition, we encourage our donors to engage with Classical Opera on a personal level by inviting them to private receptions and events where they are able to meet the team and the artists.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £271,700

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      Amount Heading Description
      £67,000 MOZART 250 - Artist Fees Artist fees for '1766 - a retrospective' and 'La canterina' (Eisenstadt and London)
      £29,000 MOZART 250 - Production Costs Production costs for '1766 - a retrospective' and 'La canterina' (Eisenstadt and London)
      £63,000 Recordings - Artists Fees Artist fees for Sophie Bevan and Zaide recordings
      £42,000 Recordings - Production Costs Production costs for Sophie Bevan and Zaide recordings
      £70,700 Young Artists Performance Artist fees, production and training costs for 3 concert performances inc.Messiah and Don Giovanni

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    The Harold Hyam Wingate Foundation £3,000 Guaranteed
    Richard Carne Trust £5,000 Guaranteed
    Gifts from individuals £33,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    '1766 - a retrospective' will take place in London's Wigmore Hall, as will our 2nd performance of Haydn's La canterina. We will also be performing at the Haydn Festival in Eisenstadt (Austria), which is our first high-profile international booking. Our three performances involving Young Artists will take place at London venues including Middle Temple and Cadogan Hall, and our two recordings will also take place at studios located in London. Recordings will be played and broadcast internationally


    - Concert goers of all ages and backgrounds. Students and young people in particular will benefit from special ticket prices for under-36s
    - The young artists who we support will benefit from coaching, mentoring and performance opportunities
    - The venues in which we perform will have the potential to bring in new audience members through leveraging Classical Opera's support base
    - Our donors, who can see the direct impact of their giving and can become more closely involved with the company

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Ian Page has been described in the press as 'one of the most stylishly authoritative interpreters of [Mozart] working today'. His creative vision and ambition mean that we are ideally placed to push the boundaries of 'popular' Mozart, introducing audiences to new and exciting works. Over the past 18 years, we have built a reputation for innovative programming and strong casting. Working with established and emerging artists, we will continue to bring our trademark freshness to every performance.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Ian Page

    Our Artistic Director devises and casts all concerts and recordings. He also provides one-to-one training and mentoring for our Associate Artists.


    Our world-class singers and period-instrument orchestra have received widespread acclaim for the quality and vitality of their craft.

    Administrative Team

    Classical Opera is supported by a team of highly skilled, dedicated and ambitious individuals who share Ian's vision for the future.

    Andrew Mellor (AJM Productions)

    Andrew has worked with us on multiple recordings of a consistently high standard, and will bring his expertise to both our upcoming recordings.