The Canadian Children’s Opera Company have announced their 50th anniversary season. The big news is that the main production will be a new piece by Alice Ping Yee Ho and Marjorie Chan (the team behind The Lesson of Da Ji). The new piece is called The Monkiest King and is based on the legendary (and comic book) character the Monkey King. Like the earlier work it will fuse western opera and traditional Chinese music techniques and instruments. It will play at the Lyric Theatre at the Toronto Centre for the Arts May 25-27 2018.
There is also going to be a celebratory concert hosted by Ben Heppner on October 26 2017 at the Four Seasons Centre. Besides performances by the current CCOC there will be appearances from Richard Margison, Krisztina Szabó, Simone Osborne and Andrew Haji and a choir of CCOC alumni.
Other traditional elements of the season include A Cup of Kindness; the CCOC’s annual winter choral concert in late November. Myths & Monsters; a spring performance by The Junior Divisions (children aged 3-10), will present a collection of music and theatre examining the fantastic and frightening in the world of myth and legend. This will include a production of Dean Burry’s opera for young performers, Theseus and the Minotaur. And, finally, the older members of the company will present Gian Carlo Menotti’s Chip and His Dog which was originally commissioned by the CCOC back in the 1970s.
And for any readers who happen to be Prague, Krakow, or Budapest in the first half of July this year the CCOC is touring its production of Hans Krása’s Brundibár. It’s well worth catching if you can.