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On Tuesday 11th August at 7:30pm, Green Opera's 'Fillu' will be broadcast from the beautiful St.Leonard's Church, Hythe as part of the inaugural JAM on the Marsh Virtual.
'Fillu' is a dramatisation formed out of the songs of Schubert, Brahms, Wolf and Robert and Clara Schumann based around the lives of Robert Schumann and Clara Wieck’s daughter, Eugenie Schumann and her romantic and musical partner, the renowned soprano Marie Fillunger or ‘Fillu’. Both of these women led extraordinary lives in Germany and England in the late 19th century but their history has been sadly overlooked. When Eugenie wrote her memoir after Fillu’s death, her life-long love was barely mentioned as it had to remain secret. This piece serves as the memoir that they themselves could never write.
This piece will be performed in German, accompanied with English subtitles.
Read a full programme and learn more about the piece and the artists involved ahead of the broadcast here.
Green Opera is a company with a vision for making music and drama in a way that is environmentally sustainable. As an organisation taking a major stand on the impact of arts on the environment, we are dedicated to inspiring others both to engage with this wonderful art-form and to take care of the world around them.
Producing sustainable theatre is not as complicated as it sounds. At the moment we are focussed on ensuring that all of our resources are sustainably source. We upcycle props, costumes or scenery and recycle anything we no longer have a use for. We also use a paperless ticketing system and where printing is unavoidable, we do so on recycled paper.
We are also interested in repurposing buildings: many of our productions take place in spaces that are not designed for theatrical use such as churches and libraries. We hope to extend our interest to abandoned and neglected spaces in the future in order to rejuvenate spaces that have been neglected. We know that there is always room for growth and improvement. With the help of our dedicated Environmental Officers, we are constantly look to find ways to improve the sustainability of our practice and share our knowledge with the rest of the arts community.
By producing our work sustainably and supplementing our performances with discussions and Q&As about environmental issues we hope to educate our audiences and the wider public about environmental causes and to be an example to other arts organisations by showing them that theatre can be sustainable. We also regularly share environmental resources online, most notably via our #SustainableSunday campaign!
In 2021, we plan to start delivering workshops at schools to introduce children to opera and also encourage to take care of the world around them. We are also eager to work with vocational training establishments and young artist programmes to deliver workshops in being an environmentally-friendly performer and sustainable production design. We want to ensure that the next generation of artists are equipped with the tools they need to pursue their vocation sustainably.
Eleanor Burke Artistic Director
Eleanor is a London-based director and choreographer. A trained ballet and contemporary dancer, Eleanor is undertaking a BADC course in stage combat and expanding her work to include fight and intimacy choreography. Eleanor read English at Trinity College, Cambridge where she was a choral and academic scholar and directed several productions for the Cambridge University Opera Society including Bizet's Carmen. Eleanor recently directed Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte (Opera Kensington); and is currently working on a double-bill of Menotti’s The Boy Who Grew Too Fast and Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi (Southgate Youth Opera). Eleanor has also worked professionally as an Assistant Director for Stuart Barker on Rossini’s La Cenerentola (British Youth Opera); Daisy Evans on Puccini’s La Bohème (Hampstead Garden Opera); and James Hurley on his production of Massenet's Chérubin (Royal Academy Opera). She has also assisted on and observed several productions as part of the Arcola's Grimeborn Festival including Scott Joplin's Treemonisha (Spectra Ensemble), and Julia Burbach's staging of Wagner's Das Rheingold. Eleanor wrote and directed Green Opera's inaugural production, Fillu, and most recently directed their première of Karolina Csàthy's Gesualdo.
Lizzie Thomas Producer
Lizzie read Modern Languages at UCL, majoring in French. As part of her studies, she spent her third year abroad living in Paris, working in advertising for Elle Magazine. Throughout her time at university she contributed to and sang in a number of UCOpera productions and, during her final year, she produced the British staged premiere of Smetana's Libuse at the Bloomsbury Theatre. More recently she was Assistant Producer for Spectra Ensemble's Treemonisha at the Grimeborn Opera Festival. Lizzie is currently working in advertising for Publicis Media but is delighted to have the opportunity to continue her involvement in the Arts and Opera.
Jonathan Whiting Composer-in-Residence
Jonathan is a freelance award-winning composer who specialises in vocal and theatrical music. He has recently graduated from King's College London with a First Class degree in Music where he was taught composition under Dr Edward Nesbitt. As an academic, he specialised in musical theatre, particularly the analytical approach to the music of Stephen Sondheim. Jonathan has received commissions and performances from the Modern Music Society of King's College London and Guy's Chapel Choir and has two publications with Queen's Temple Publications. He also works as editor and typesetter for world-renowned musical pedagogue and composer, Paul Harris, and assists in the running of the annual International Malcolm Arnold Festival.
Nina Vinther Environmental Officer
Nina is a First Class Modern and Medieval Languages Graduate of Cambridge University. She studied French, German, Dutch, Polish and Danish alongside lots of singing, from jazz, to lieder, to musical theatre, to Trinity College Choir. In her final year she worked with various students, academics and staff on environmental questions from divestment to subsidised rail travel. Besides her love of performance, Nina is passionate about outreach and education and never takes music for granted – she believes that musicians should be stewards of the human habitat and the arts alike. Music has huge potential to connect people to their emotion, to communicate truths not easily communicated, and to build communities in times of crisis. She is determined that our conversations about "eco-friendliness” shouldn’t be a gimmick; they must be formalised and sustainable change organisationally implemented.
Fillu is a dramatised Liederabend devised and directed by Eleanor Burke. It is based around the lives of Eugenie Schumann and Marie Fillunger both of whom led extraordinary lives in Germany and England in the late 19th-century and whose history has been sadly overlooked. The piece consists of a selection of mid-late 19th-century Lieder interspersed with letters exchanged between the two lovers in the years 1875-1893.
As a non-profit organisation, we rely on the generosity of individuals to make the creative and environmental endeavours that go hand-in-hand at Green Opera possible, especially during these uncertain times for the arts.
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