Opera Scotland

Greek 1988Edinburgh International Festival

Read more about the opera Greek

Greek was commissioned jointly by the Munich Biennale and the Edinburgh Festival, receiving its first performance in Germany on 17 June. For a first attempt at opera or music theatre by a young composer it was a great success, greeted with great enthusiasm by the Munich audience. It also met with a warm reception in Edinburgh. However for some British audiences it seemeds over-hectoring. The opera, unlike the source play, was created with knowledge of the Thatcher government, to which the creators were clearly unsympathetic. With the police depicted in caricature style, they were almost like the thugs in Stanley Kubrick's film derived from the Anthony Burgess novel A Clockwork Orange, of a few years earlier.

Of the composer's talent for word-setting and dramatic composition there was no doubt, and he would quickly become one of the leading opera composers of the day. This first set of performers were also first rate, with the small band controlled brilliantly by Siân Edwards. The young baritone Quentin Hayes made a great impression in the huge role of the Oedipus character. The other singers made effective use of the various contrasting characters they had to play, even if the cockney accents had a tendency to slip from time to time.

Performance Cast


Quentin Hayes

Dad Café Manager; Chief of Police

Richard Suart

Mum Waitress 2; Sphinx 1

Helen Charnock

Wife Doreen; Waitress 1; Sphinx 2

Fiona Kimm

Performance DatesGreek 1988

Map List

Leith Theatre | Edinburgh

25 Aug, 19.30 27 Aug, 19.30

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