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Musicians South West brought the first ever (to our knowledge) live opera performances to the Somer Valley in 2015 and 2016. Details of these two unique events are below.

Dido & Aeneas

A 'pay what you think it's worth' opera-for-all performance

Midsomer Norton Town Hall

Sunday, 7th June, 2015, 6pm

Marie Elliott - Dido, Andrew Havers - Aeneas, Julia O'Connor - Belinda, Colette Henshaw - Sorceress, Nerissa Faulkner - Spirit/Second Woman with Bath Consort, members of the Kertesz Quartet with Keith Tempest (cello), Jacquelyn Bevan (harpsichord), and Bath Cantata Group, directed by Neil Moore. The Town Hall was packed to hear Purcell's tragic opera performed in the beautiful setting of the Assembly Room. Photos and video extract below.  In fact, it was standing room only!


Thanks go to our sponsors and advertisers: Radstock Cooperative Society, Thatcher & Hallam, Paul Clark Accountants and All Instruments for helping to make opera in the Somer Valley both a possibility and a success.


Watch the video extract below...

Dido's Lament (extract)

Acis & Galatea

a 'pay-what-you-think-it's-worth' opera

Victoria Hall, Radstock

Sunday, 26th June 2016,7.30pm

with a pre-opera talk at 6.45pm


Handel's pastoral opera, given a contemporary setting, with a classic tale of true love and jealous desire - a pretty girl pursued by two suitors,  simple sheep farmer Acis and the local 'bully' Polyphemus, played out in a pub somewhere near you...


Performed by professional soloists and instrumentalists of Bath Consort, Acis & Galatea was undoubtedly a 'first' for Radstock, performed in the fine acoustic of Victoria Hall's upstairs studio, as part of the Somer Valley Opera weekend. Directed by Neil Kirkman (NODA Award winner for Bath Opera's Peter Grimes 2015), Musical Director Neil Moore, chorus Midsomer Choral Society joined by local singers, chorus-master Rupert Bevan.


Acis                      Christopher Pelmore (tenor)

Galatea                 Julia O'Connor (soprano)

Polyphemus          Niall Hoskin (baritone)

Damon (Sharon)   Nerissa Faulkner (soprano)



James Watts &

Vanessa Hammond   Oboes

Katalin Kertesz &

Lucy Hewson           Violins

Kathryn Drury          Cello

Matthew Spring       Theorbo

Jacquelyn Bevan      Harpsichord



Saturday, 25th June, 4-6pm at Victoria Hall

Singers' Masterclass with Saffron van Zwanenberg, Artistic Director of Jackdaws.

Free to observers. Participants £10 adults, £5 students. Email for details. One space left!

Come and hear aspiring opera singers taught by an expert vocal coach.


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