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Christchurch City Council Media Release 5 February, 1998

Audience participation creates enchanting atmosphere at opera.

SummerTimes BellSouth Candlelight Opera

Saturday 21 February, 8.00pm to 10.00pm, North Hagley Park


Audience participation will ignite the BellSouth Candlelight Opera at North Hagley Park on Saturday 21 February as concert-goers create a stunning sea of flickering candlelight at sunset.

SummerTimes Publicity Co-ordinator, Katie Macbeth describes the free concert as an ‘opera experience’ and says the participation of the audience is an integral part of the event. “It’s a very special occasion and the audience plays a big part in creating its enchanting atmosphere.”

The Candlelight Opera has been an annual highlight of SummerTimes since 1993. The organisers are quick to highlight the importance of the event’s accessibility. Katie Macbeth says “For a lot of people opera can be a bit daunting so we make sure the programme includes plenty of familiar tunes, the kind you might hear everyday without necessarily thinking of it as opera.”

Those attending the BellSouth Candlelight Opera will hear pieces from Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’ and ‘Cosi fan tutte’, Verdi’s ‘Nabucco’ and ‘Don Carlos’ and Pucinni’s ‘Tosca’ and ‘La Boheme’ amongst others. This year’s concert will feature top opera singers Joanna Cole and Gregory Tomlinson from Australia, and New Zealanders Anne Lamont-Low, Ted Rhodes and Jared Holt.

The five soloists will be accompanied by The Canterbury Opera Chorus, The Canterbury Children’s Chorus and the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Richard Divall, also from Australia.

Once again a superscreen will afford a front row view to the whole audience. Funding for the screen has been generously provided by The Community Trust. Concert-goers can bring their own candles or get one free when they buy a programme for $2.00. Parking is available in North Hagley Park for $3.00 by entering off the westbound lane of Harper Avenue. Food and refreshments will also be available on site.



Biographies for the soloists and the conductor are available on request and interviews can be arranged through the Publicity Co-ordinator. For further information contact the SummerTimes Publicity Co-ordinator,

Katie Macbeth, on (03) 941 8495, (025) 227 2916

or email: (

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