Opera Scotland

Noyes Fludde 1991Scottish Chamber Orchestra

Read more about the opera Noyes Fludde

Noye's Fludde is one of those wonderful pieces that can unite performers and audience in a very special way. This is due to the large number of young participants, the likelihood that most of them will have relations in the audience, and the fact that those audience members, at various points, should become a lustily singing congregation.

Britten specified that he wanted as many children as possible to take part, and this hugely enjoyable event assembled and controlled over 130 of them. Their participation extended to producing their own delightful animal costumes, which were very effective as the massed group paraded down the hall's central aisle at the start. The Caird Hall is, of course, a vast space to fill, but there was no problem for these forces, and Christopher Bell, a hugely extrovert character who went on to be the regular conductor of the RSNO Christmas concerts as well as a chorus master of note, here encouraged from the audience a rousing performance of the hymns.

This special event was produced as one of the extra cultural projects that celebrated the 800th anniversary of the granting of Dundee's royal charter by King David II. The SCO rarely appears in the city, unless hired by the Choral Union. The more intimate nearby halls in St Andrews and Perth are preferred, but the big space has an excellent acoustic, even when the band is, as on this occasion, on the hall floor and offset to one side. The well-known, and hugely popular, Bill McCue, and the then little-known Frances McCafferty both gave well-projected performances. It is always fun to speculate as to the effect such an event might have on the young participants, so it is nice to see listed among the girls the name of Joanne Boag, whose first professional operatic role in Dundee was in Scottish Opera's 2009 Kátya Kabanová.

Performance DatesNoyes Fludde 1991

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Caird Hall | Dundee

17 Jul, 19.30

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