Opera Scotland

Alan Kitching Suggest updates

English director, administrator and translator.

From 1959 to 1976 Alan Kitching and his wife Frances were leaders of the Handel revival in Britain, with operatic activity centred on their intimate Unicorn Theatre in Abingdon. Initially, much of the input was amateur, but soon became increasingly professional, with a notable record for reviving works unknown since Handel's lifetime. They also prepared performing translations from the original Italian, since these operas had generally not been performed in English previously.

By the time operations became financially unsustainable in 1976, the Abingdon operation had a unique record for the revival of Handel operas, including Orlando, Partenope, Agrippina, Admeto, Poro, Amadigi, Flavio, Sosarme, Il pastor fido, Arminio and Lotario.

The influence of the Kitchings' enterprise on Scotland lies largely in the operation of the annual festivals at Ledlanet Nights, where three Handel operas were performed - Partenope (1964), Agrippina (1965) and Alcina (1969).

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