Opera Scotland

Using the Website

Opera Scotland offers you a "What's On" facility - listings of forthcoming events - and an "Archive" of opera performances giving previous casts and descriptions of productions. Our notes on a given work give the date of first performance in Scotland if we have been able to establish it.  Both features are free to users although do please credit us. If you like our site, come back again; 'like' on Facebook and 'follow us' on Twitter.  Tell your friends and let your colleagues know about us.

Forthcoming events

Look first to the right of our home page. Every event for the current month is listed – from main stage performances to concerts, from opera highlights to cinema films and relays; and from study weekends to evening classes.

  • You can move from this display to show map format by clicking on 'map'. All events are ordered by date in 30-day sections; with each day that passes, the flagged events 'drop off' into our archive. Click through from list to map and back again.
  • At the foot of the list, you can click through events month by month, forward and back.
  • You should be able to move round the performances, companies and venues without difficulty. You should be able to click through and buy tickets from the venue. Let us know of problems - please!


This deals mainly with main stage opera performances, and related information. We do enter some details of concert performances and oratorios (especially when a notable performer's operatic appearances in Scotland were otherwise rare, or non-existent).

The Archive is accessed using the search engine - the box with magnifier symbol at upper right, just above the map. Enter the name of the opera, or the artist by surname, or the venue, or the company, and see what you find. (You will find that the link is 'live' and usable when the cursor changes from a bar to a pointing hand). For example:

  • Type the name of an opera like Bohème, Traviata or Valkyrie into the search engine and see where – and when – it was first performed in Scotland. For a name such as Carmen there will be several entries - just look for Carmen (Opera) and click on that.
  • When looking at an opera page, if you find there is a box giving the cast on the right, it means we have entered the details for at least one performance of the opera. For instance, if you are looking at Carmen, click on the role of Don José and a long list of dates will appear. Scroll down to 1977 and you will find the name of Domingo. Click on Domingo and you will find the rest of the cast of the famous Festival production. Click on Berganza and you will find the other roles she sang in Scotland. You can then click on Cenerentola and find the cast for that. See where it leads you.
  • Search, for example, for the entry on the Theatre Royal in Glasgow. Look for some singers - we've started to build up mini-biographies of Scots from the world of opera or of those who performed in Scotland. Put in the words Ward (for David); or Hillman (for David). The database works best with just the surname. 
  • Look for Callas, Domingo or Pavarotti and their performances on the operatic stage in Scotland will appear. Click on the opera title and the cast and notes will appear.

You will find many entries that are still blank, or nearly so. We plan to add biographical notes on performers and profiles of companies, and build up an even more authoritative database over the next few years.  A benefit of this work will be the authoritative identification of the first performances of particular operas in Scotland. We have already confirmed that many works reached this country with surprising rapidity, and became very popular.

Please be patient while we expand the website. Join Facebook or Twitter and keep in touch. Please let us know as soon as possible of forthcoming events, information you think should be added, or of any errors - our entries are only as good as the information we track down or are given.

NB. While we do our best to achieve accuracy we can take no liability for mistakes – our information is provided by the parties responsible, or taken from promotional literature. Furthermore it is difficult always to be aware of changes and last minute postponements. If attendance at an event is important to you, make sure you check details with the company or venue beforehand. 

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