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Horse makes opera debut in Falstaff at the ROH

15 May 2012 Last updated at 00:16 BST

A 15-year-old horse called Rupert is making his opera debut at the Royal Opera House, in a new production of Falstaff as part of the London 2012 Festival.

Director Robert Carsen, who has set the tale of Shakespeare's roguish knight in the 1950s, wanted to introduce a horse to reflect English society.

Italian baritone Ambrogio Maestri, who plays Sir John Falstaff, says he has bonded with Rupert despite having never ridden a horse before.

Produced by the BBC's Claudia Redmond and Dan Curtis.