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Longborough's Opera

Verity Sharp finds out how the dream of one local man to have his own opera house in the village of Longborough is inspiring others.

Verity Sharp finds out how a converted cattle shed has become home to an opera festival. Builder and property developer Martin Graham decided to build his own 500-seater opera house in the village of Longborough, in the Cotswolds, so that he could stage his favourite Wagner operas, ‘The Ring Cycle’, which he first watched on the television - and became hooked. But Martin’s love for opera and classical music started when he was a little boy growing up in the village. A man named Jack started to tell him all about Beethoven and Strauss and for Martin the seeds were planted.
Verity arrives during the dress rehearsal as it’s on this day that people from the village, along with children from the local primary schools, all attend the performance. For two pupils who attend Longborough Primary School, Poppy and James, it’s going to be particularly exciting as they are going to be performing for the very first time. They are providing the screams in ‘Das Rheingold’- first of the four music dramas that make up Wagner’s ‘Ring Cycle’.
With the festival now running for over 20 years, Verity finds out what locals make of an opera house in their village and how it’s inspired and impacted the life of one photographer.

Producer: Perminder Khatkar

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25 minutes

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