iPlayer Radio What's New?
On Now : BBC Proms
2014 Season - Prom 61 (part 2): Rachmaninov, Glinka and Zhou Long
Image for Luke Bedford - Seven Angels

Sorry, this episode is not currently available on BBC iPlayer Radio

Luke Bedford - Seven Angels

1 hour, 30 minutes
First broadcast:
Saturday 14 April 2012

Tom Service presents a performance of young British composer Luke Bedford's 2011 chamber opera "Seven Angels". Commissioned and given its premiere by Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and The Opera Group, it tells the story of seven angels who have fallen through space and time for so long, they have forgotten why. Coming to rest on a desert landscape, they imagine the creation of a legendary garden that once flourished there and its destruction from greed and neglect. Bedford's first opera, it has a libretto by the poet Glyn Maxwell, and was inspired by Milton's Paradise Lost.

Tom is joined by tenor Christopher Lemmings, the BCMG's artistic director Stephen Newbould and composer Luke Bedford to discuss the opera, and it is preceded by Luke's 2006 piece Or Voit Tout En Aventure..

Seven Angels

Music - Luke Bedford
Libretto - Glyn Maxwell

Conductor Nicholas Collon
Director John Fulljames

Angel 1 / Waitress Rhona McKail
Angel 2 /Queen Emma Selway
Angel 3 / Chef / Priestess Louise Mott
Angel 4 / Prince Christopher Lemmings
Angel 5 / Porter / Industrialist Joseph Shovelton
Angel 6 / Gardener / General Owen Gilhooly
Angel 7 / King Keel Watson

BCMG Players:
Flute / Piccolo / Alto Flute: Marie-Christine Zupancic
Clarinet / Bass Clarinet: Mark O'Brien
Bassoon / Contra-bassoon: Margaret Cookhorn
Trumpet / Flugelhorn: Jonathan Holland
Trombone: Duncan Wilson
Percussion: Simon Limbrick
Piano: Malcolm Wilson
Viola 1: Christopher Yates
Viola 2: Michael Jenkinson
Viola 3: Myriam Guillaume
Viola 4 / Violin: Marcus Barcham-Stevens
Double Bass: John Tattersdill

Seven Angels was commissioned and produced by The Opera Group and Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and co-produced with ROH2 and Tramway Glasgow.


  • Seven Angels - Luke Bedford

    Seven Angels - Luke Bedford

    The Opera Group/Birmingham Contemporary Music Group

    Christopher Lemmings as the Prince

    Photo credit: Alastair Muir



  1. Image for Radio 3's Fifty Modern Classics

    Radio 3's Fifty Modern Classics

    Artists, musicians and composers introduce fifty key pieces of classical music composed between 1950…

  2. Image for Radio 3’s Composers’ Rooms

    Radio 3’s Composers’ Rooms

    Sara Mohr-Pietsch interviews today’s composers in their rooms and writing spaces, exploring the…

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Added. Check out your playlist Dismiss