Members of English National Opera
return to Cranleigh Arts

We are delighted to welcome, on Friday 27 May at 7.30 pm, five star members of English National Opera (ENO) to Cranleigh Arts for a gala evening of operatic arias and musical theatre.

Many of us enjoy the streamed event cinema at Cranleigh Arts; last month’s “La Traviata” being another gem, but we still love the real thing; Live!! Young Welsh baritone Dafydd Allen gave a lovely solo performance in April. Now we move on a level in the ENO group.

The final programme will be announced nearer the day but will feature a first half of well known arias, duets, trios and quartets from the greatest opera works, including by Puccini and Rossini; and in the second half, some more light-heated operetta including Gilbert & Sullivan and Strauss.

Claire Pendleton, soprano, is our local star; her husband sings in the Guildford Cathedral choir. Karen Foster, mezzo-soprano, has performed with ENO for 30 years. Paul Sheehan, baritone, is a go-to acting opera star with a well-known Toreador in Carmen. They are joined this year by James Liu, tenor, from Opera North. Simon Haynes, piano, is singer as well as pianist and has performed with Glyndebourne Festival Opera and London Sinfonietta voices.

If you watched the marvellous ENO production on BBC 2 at Christmas 2020 of the Mozart “Requiem” you will have seen three of our stars in that performance at the London Coliseum.

This visit by members of ENO is a fundraising concert for Cranleigh Arts whose financial position was severely hit by the closure of the Arts Centre and loss of income for almost two years. Benefitting from the event also is the “Heritage 1170 Community” local charity which is raising funds to maintain the St Nicolas Cranleigh church building for our heritage. So your tickets purchased will benefit two local charities at the same time.

This gala concert continues a strong programme in 2022 of the finest performances of classical music, here on our local stage. First, we had the prestige of “An Evening with Imogen Cooper and introducing Ignas Maknickas” in February, where an overflowing full house welcomed one of England’s finest living pianists. Then in March, BBC Young Musician of the Year Coco Tomita thrilled us with an exceptional violin programme, performing with Alison Rhind, piano partner of Nicola Benedetti.

Coming up on Friday 10 June at 7.30 pm we present Sasha Grunyuk, one of Ukraine’s finest pianists, for a long scheduled concert which will also be raising funds for the refugees from the war in his home country through the medium of the Disaster Emergency Committee (DEC). It will be an emotional evening.

All the forward classical music programme is on the website:

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