Opera North offers audio-described film of Leonard Bernstein opera for free

Post date: 
Tuesday, 9 October 2018
TV, Radio and Film

Opera North’s critically acclaimed production of "Trouble in Tahiti" is now available to view for free on the Opera Europa OperaVision website, as part of global celebrations marking the 100th anniversary of the legendary American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein’s birth. 

Commissioned by The Space, "Trouble in Tahiti" was filmed live at Leeds Grand Theatre in October 2017. Committed to making their live performances accessible, Opera North have committed to making their digital performances equally accessible, producing versions of the film with audio-description, BSL interpretation and closed captions.

Lasting only 45 minutes, Trouble in Tahiti it is a lesser-known Bernstein work in comparison to "West Side Story" or "On The Town", but like his most famous musicals, it combines the composer’s genius for melodic invention and heartfelt emotion with the distinctively American sounds of Hollywood and Broadway. A satire on the American Dream, Trouble in Tahiti is set in 1950s suburbia, where Sam and Dinah appear to have the perfect life in their little white house. But their growing detachment exposes a mutual feeling that they are trapped in a life that has turned into a lie. Sam escapes to the hyper-masculine, win-or-lose world of work and the gym, while Dinah loses herself in the movies, where the hit picture of the day is the ominously-titled Trouble in Tahiti

It stars Canadian mezzo-soprano Wallis Giunta, winner of the Young Singer Award at the International Opera Awards 2018, and Dutch baritone Quirijn de Lang, who has recently been seen in the lead role of Fred Graham/Petruchio in Opera North’s UK and international tour of Kiss Me, Kate.

The film is available to watch for free until 24 November 2018, with audio description and an audio introduction by describer Lynn Thornton.

Watch Trouble in Tahiti

Select the audio-described performance from the extra videos scrolling on the right and the performace video will then pop up and play. 

Opera North provide audio notes for all their productions. These are short audio files which describe the set and costumes, the synopsis, cast list and any other useful information.  They can be found in the accessible information section on each production page on the Opera North website in advance of coming to a performance and can be sent out on CD on request.

This season, Opera North have audio-described performances of their acclaimed new production of Tosca, touring to Newcastle, Hull, Nottingham and Salford Quays.  And in January, they will be audio describing a new production of The Magic Flute, sung in English.

More information on audio-described performances at Opera North can be found on their website