Entertainment & Arts

Philip Glass Disney opera to get UK premiere at ENO

Walt Disney
Image caption Glass's opera The Perfect American opens on 9 June 2013

Philip Glass's opera about Walt Disney is to get its UK premiere at the English National Opera (ENO) next year.

Acclaimed British baritone Christopher Purves has been cast as Disney, while soprano Janis Kelly will play the role of Disney's studio nurse.

Cloud Atlas writer David Mitchell will see his latest libretto premiere, which features 3D film sequences, at the ENO in 2013.

He has collaborated with Dutch composer Michel van der Aa on Sunken Garden.

The opera is described as an "occult mystery film opera".

Van der Aa, who is also a film-maker, will include the use of electronic instruments in his score.

It is not the first time Mitchell has written for an opera - he worked on Dutch opera Wake, about an accident in a Dutch firework depot, which premiered in 2010.

The novelist, who has been nominated for the Booker prize twice, won the 2011 Commonwealth Writers Prize for his novel The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet.

Glass's Disney opera will receive its world premiere in January in Madrid.

The ENO 2012/2013 programme will also include the first full professional staging of Vaughan Williams' The Pilgrim's Progress, since the Festival of Britain in 1951.

Speaking about the new season, the ENO's artistic director John Berry said: "Our sights are set on keeping ENO relevant and the exciting home for modern opera in London."

The schedule also includes revivals of The Magic Flute and Don Giovanni.

New productions include Medea, La Traviata and Carmen.

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