Baroque opera

The baroque era brought innovation not only to the visual but also to the performing arts; Claudio Monteverdi’s ‘favola in musica’ L’ORFEO (ORPHEUS), first staged in Mantua in 1607, was one of the earliest operas in history. From the Italian city states, this new form of staged musical play takes off on its triumphal adventure around Europe. In France, Jean-Baptiste Lully and later Jean-Philippe Rameau have great success at the royal court of Versailles. Georg Philipp Telemann, greatly influenced by the achievements of the French composers, establishes the opéra comique in the Hanseatic City of Hamburg. Meanwhile, his fellow countryman George Frideric Handel becomes one of the most sought-after composers in Europe. In London, his operas such as ALCINA, GIULIO CESARE IN EGITTO and RODELINDA, further develop the art form established in Great Britain 20 years earlier by Henry Purcell with his semi-operas KING ARTHUR and THE FAIRY QUEEN. Rich, luxuriant and sensual – discover the opera of the baroque era in all its facets on THE OPERA PLATFORM.

Operas (0)

Streetwise Opera: The Passion


Combining social commitment with serious artistic endeavour, Streetwise Opera and The Sixteen present THE PASSION, a landmark production from Manchester starring performers with experience of homelessness. Bach’s ST MATTHEW PASSION brought to life as a fully-staged opera.


Monteverdi - ORPHEUS

The song of Orpheus not only moves men and beasts but also nature as well. And it almost overcomes death. Monteverdi’s musical fable becomes, thanks to visionary director Barrie Kosky and composer Elena Kats-Chernin, an explosion of sensuality.

Streetwise Opera: The Passion

Streetwise Opera | THE PASSION, as viewed by The Sixteen

The Sixteen are known internationally for their performances of sacred and Renaissance music. Harry Christopher, their founder and conductor, introduces this abridged version of Johann Sebastian Bach’s SAINT MATTHEW PASSION.
Streetwise Opera: The Passion

Streetwise Opera | THE PASSION’s relevance today

Penny Woolcock, director, introduces this unusual approach to a staging of Johann Sebastian Bach’s ST MATTHEW PASSION. The work is a journey from Jesus Christ’s crucifixion to his resurrection, with a final chorus written by Scottish composer James MacMillan.
Glyndebourne: Hippolyte et Aricie

Glyndebourne| HIPPOLYTE AND ARICIE – chance to dance

Choreographer Ashley Page, director Jonathan Kent and a company of dancers present Glyndebourne's first ever production of HIPPOLYTE AND ARICIE, premiered in 2013. They explain how they have integrated the ballet into each of the five acts of Rameau's masterpiece of French Baroque opera.