Opera North and Leeds Playhouse postpone Sondheim’s A Little Night Music

The artwork for the postponed Opera North and Leeds Playhouse co-production of A Little Night Music

OPERA North is cancelling or postponing all “public-facing activity” until at least the end of April, in response to the COVID-19 crisis.

The Leeds company also confirmed the postponement of this season’s co-production of Stephen Sondheim’s acerbic musical A Little Night Music with Leeds Playhouse. Rehearsals had been due to start this morning for the May 9 opening to mark the year when the New York composer turned 90 yesterday.

“Our immediate priority is the health and safety of our audiences, artists and staff, and we hope to be able to mount the production in a future season,” said Opera North general director Richard Mantle.

Stephen Sondheim: composer of the 1973 musical A Little Night Musical

“This is undoubtedly a time of great challenge for Opera North and our peers but we are determined to respond with creativity and resilience.

“We will honour the contracts of all guest artists to the end of our current main stage opera season and those of guest orchestral players until the end of April.”

Mr Mantle continued: “We are working with our many education and community partners to ascertain what work can still be delivered in those settings, and will focus our creativity and core resources on finding new ways of using music and opera to enhance people’s lives. In these uncertain times, it feels more important than ever that we use music to connect with each other.”

A close-up of the Orchestra of Opera North. Picture: Justin Slee

Opera North remains hopeful that the 2020-2021 season will go ahead as planned in September. In the meantime, the company is working on finding other ways to share its art form with audiences, including online resources. 

Opera North’s livestream of The Turn Of The Screw is available via OperaVision at 
operavision.eu/en/library/performances/operas/turn-screw-opera-north; the full Opera North Ring Cycle at operanorth.co.uk/the-ring-cycle/; the 2017 production of Trouble In Tahiti via Now TV and Sky on-demand services.

For updated information on Opera North event cancellations and postponements, visit  operanorth.co.uk/news/coronavirus-covid-19-update/.