From the 19th of July the Grimeborn Opera Festival returns for the sixteenth year, featuring twelve operas from across the globe.


“Every year it is a joy to bring ambitious and adventurous Opera to contemporary audiences at the Arcola Theatre. We’re passionate about making Opera accessible to all. Grimeborn allows us to do that with programming from both classical and radical thought-provoking artists and companies from across the continent and some of the most affordable ticket prices in the UK.”

Arcola Artistic Director Mehmet Ergen

Save when you book multiple shows!

2 shows – 10% off

3 shows – 15% off

4 shows – 20% off

5 shows – 25% off

6 shows – 30% off


The Merry Wives of Windsor

Music by Otto Nicolai, Story by William Shakespeare
This is a battle – between genders and between generations, for power, love, and respect. Queer Voices have created a burlesque, exuberant comic-opera performance with fearless casting…..crossing the boundaries between audience and performers….A guerilla opera, abolishing archaic, operatic hierarchy, experimenting and challenging traditional gender roles in the play.

No For An Answer

An Opera by Marc Blitzstein
Set in a Greek-American social club at times of austerity, cost of living crisis and rising unemployment, ‘No For An Answer’ was written in 1941 but speaks to the present with terrifying prescience and will demonstrate the compassion and farsightedness of Blitzstein and speak to a modern British audience. This will be the European premiere of No For An Answer by Marc Blitzstein, directed by the Arcola Theatre's Artistic Director Mehmet Ergen, a pioneer of Blitzstein's oeuvre in Britain. American composer Blitzstein, a gay man murdered in 1964, won national attention in 1937 with the pro-union musical ‘The Cradle Will

La Cenerentola (Cinderella)

By Gioachino Rossini
Barefoot Opera are known for physicalised, ensemble storytelling and integrated music making. In this production of Rossini’s fabulously comic tale, the ill treated Cinders wins her prince through her kind behaviour.

Trouble in Tahiti

By Leonard Bernstein
In a seemingly utopian suburbia, Sam and Dinah are unhappily married. Both escape from their dysfunctional home scene through work, the gym and going to the movies. However, with their young son Junior in the house, both are forced to address their growing isolation for the good of the family.


Composed by Domenico Zipoli
The UK stage premiere of this long-lost baroque opera by Jesuit composer Domenico Zipoli. Originally written around 1720 for performance by Indigenous musicians on the Jesuit missions in Latin America, the score was recently discovered in the Archives of Chiquitos in Bolivia. One of the first operas to emerge from the melting pot of Hispanic and Native cultures, LOYOLA combines the sounds of Europe’s 18th century with Indigenous tradition. LOYOLA is brought to Grimeborn by El Parnaso Hyspano: an ensemble led by Inca tenor Rafael Montero, dedicated to authentic performances of the Latin American baroque. This musical and cultural integrity


Yes, love hurts! And it always did, but today ghosting, anxiety, projection, self-validation and the cowardice of being apparently safe behind a screen just increase that pain.

The Portrait of Manon / L’Heure Espagnole

Sung in English with libretti by Lindsay Bramley
“What next?” is a question not often asked in opera. Will Rodolfo ever love again? Can Guglielmo and Fiordiligi’s marriage really succeed? Do the Rhinemaidens need better terms and conditions this time…?


By Giacomo Puccini
Struggling with emotional connection and disenfranchisement, Calaf finds himself drawn into the digital hellscape of Turandot. Can there be a return to reality?

Céphale et Procris

Opera by Élisabeth Jacquet de la Guérre
4-star production by Ensemble OrQuesta - ‘A Baroque Opera Company for the 21st Century’ - directed by Marcio da Silva: Composed by French female composer Élisabeth-Claude Jacquet de La Guerre, this UK premiere production revives this forgotten opera and explores the timeless tensions of gender inequality. A story that shows how French Baroque Opera can be relevant today: Beautiful singing, Baroque Instruments, Minimalist setting, Symbolism, Physical Theatre ★★★★ 'Eloquent: Musical and dramatic integrity spiced with invention'. Claire Seymour - The Stage ★★★★ 'a thoroughly engrossing and absorbing evening' - Tim Hochstrasser, Plays to See Content warning: scenes with subtle implications

555: Verlaine En Prison

By Logan Lopez Gonzalez and Eleanor Burke
Paul Verlaine, for shooting and injuring Arthur Rimbaud with a revolver, you are herby sentenced to 555 days in prison!” After a sold-out premiere at La Monnaie/DE MUNT, environmentally-sustainable opera company Green Opera (Bluebeard's Castle 2022), presents 555: Verlaine en prison for one night only! Featuring music from composers including Debussy, Hahn and Fauré as well as Verlaine’s poetry and letters, this new piece explores the tragic and turbulent life of Paul Verlaine, the ‘French Oscar Wilde’ and 555 day incarceration in Mons prison for shooting his lover, the poet Arthur Rimbaud. SEATS FOR SEEDS: For every ticket sold, Green

Double Bill: ‘At the Statue of Venus’ and ‘La Voix Humaine’

At the Statue of Venus by Jake Heggie, Libretto by Terrence McNally
La Voix Humaine by Francis Poulenc
After a triumphant run of Bluebeard’s Castle (★★★★★ British Theatre), environmentally-sustainable opera company, Green Opera returns with a double-bill of operas exploring women's identity in a modern world- Jake Heggie’s At the Statue of Venus (UK staged premiere) and Poulenc’s La voix humaine

Brontë the Opera

Lisa Logan’s Opera based on the play by Polly Teale
The world premiere of a compelling literary detective story about the turbulent lives of the Brontë sisters - based upon an acclaimed play by Polly Teale. In 1845, Branwell Brontë returns home in disgrace, plagued by his addictions. As he descends into alcoholism and insanity, bringing chaos to the household, his sisters write… Polly Teale's powerful play, adapted as an opera by composer Lisa Logan, evokes the real and imagined worlds of the Brontës, as their fictional characters Jane Eyre, Rochester, Cathy, Nelly and Heathcliff come to haunt their creators. Preview Brontë the Opera! Act 1, scene 2 Brontë sisters

The Mikado

By Gilbert & Sullivan
The award winning “masters of Gilbert & Sullivan in small spaces”, Charles Court Opera, present their intimate, highly successful 5 star London production of the most loved of Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic operas, The Mikado.

Image by Idil Sukan