Opera in the Cheshire countryside

Clonter OperaLizzie Bromley-Davenport of Capesthorne Hall near Macclesfield, wife of the Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire, is a professional artist whose work hangs in art collections throughout the world. Here she writes about this exciting opera.

My own life centres on our family, Capesthorne (where we live), my art and supporting my husband, Bill, in Cheshire. We all make plans and look forward to dates in the diary, and next year is no exception.

For one group of young, newly professional opera singers, the year will be a turning point as they take their first steps with a nationally respected company, performing to enthusiastic audiences in what was once a cattleshed on a Cheshire farm. Its founder, Jeffery Lockett, with his wife Anita firmly at his side, successfully brings opera to an audience so varied in taste, age and profession, that no-one could say “opera is not for me”.

The magic of the theatre touches everyone. This is a jewel in the Cheshire crown.

The Clonter Farm Music Trust provides the singers with a remarkable training ground. It is a place to see careers begin while we enjoy an atmospheric evening of music, picnicking or dining during the interval. All the productions attract enormous acclaim and each season there is something more ambitious.

Clonter Opera
Wedding set on stage. Courtesy of Clonter Opera

Last year there was a new production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni. The young performers will again receive exceptional coaching and a platform to advance their careers in a competitive world. Some of them have become international stars and return to Clonter to help the company that gave them such a unique start.

Each year over 1,000 schoolchildren benefit from the musical and theatrical workshops and matinees – but this and the productions are only able to continue with the help and enthusiasm of sponsors. By being a member of the audience we too can support opera for the future.

Clonter has progressed from hay bales to full theatre seating, from piano to orchestra pit. What began as a local idea has develope an international reputation. There, in many respects, we have a model for our own year of new beginnings, opportunities and achievements.

Life is full of surprises, I do believe, and the future may surprise us all.

— Lizzie Bromley-Davenport

Clonter Opera Theatre
Swettenham Heath
CW12 2LR
Tel: 01260-224 514 01260-224 514



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