'Opera i bawb; opera yn y Gymraeg'
The company creates Welsh adaptations that tour theatres and community halls across the country promoting opera, promoting young Welsh talents, and more than anything, promoting Welsh as the natural choice of language for the performance of opera.
OPRA Cymru was founded in July 2008 by a former director at the Royal Opera House, Patrick Young, and launched with a concert in Pontrhydfendigaid on the 21st of June, 2009. The company's intentions from the start were clear: making opera accessible to the people of Wales, by performing in Welsh.
Since that first concert, the company has presented a staple of seven classics from the operatic canon, all performed in Welsh. The company's first tour was a production of Carmen for school and village halls, with three singers and a digital piano for accompaniment; now the company has grown, and regularly performs in the main-scale venues across Wales, with a chamber ensemble in the pit.
In addition to this ‘staple fare’, the company has launched a variety of opera-promoting projects, including a school pupils technical training programme; and the company’s own Promising Artists Scheme, which offers professional development and performance opportunities to younger performers at the start of their careers.
Wythnos yng Nghymru Fydd was OPRA Cymru's first premiere production of a Welsh opera. The show was awarded 'Best Production in the Welsh Language' in the 2018 Wales Theatre Awards. The company has recently commissioned composer Gareth Glyn to write his second opera, a version of Wales’ most successful novel, Un Nos Ola Leuad by noted 20th century writer and poet, Caradog Prichard.