What makes CHOC unique?
Cambridge Handel Opera Company (CHOC) puts on Baroque operas that celebrate the fusion of music and the stage with performances that are not just ‘historically informed’, but ‘historically inspired’. There is meaningful integrity between what happens in the music and what happens on stage. Baroque stagecraft is incorporated into our productions in a manner that speaks directly to audiences.
Performances are led from the harpsichord by Artistic Director Julian Perkins. The company combines the best of youth and experience, with a cast that combines upcoming stars and more experienced professional solo singers, and an orchestra where leading professionals work and perform alongside advanced students.
CHOC's productions are events for the wider community, with a series of educational workshops for state schoolchildren in Cambridge, open Dress Rehearsals, opportunities for advanced music students, and seminars that focus not only on the music and the drama, but also on the cultural arena in which Handel competed – and ultimately flourished.
More information on CHOC at julianperkins.com
History of CHOC
From 1985, Cambridge Handel Opera Group (CHOG) put on biennial staged productions of Handel’s operas. These were led by the leading Handel scholar Dr Andrew Jones, who also prepared the editions and translations. CHOG’s productions stood out for marrying historically informed performances with historically appropriate stagings, and its closure in 2013 was a sad loss for Handel devotees.
Cambridge Handel Opera Company (CHOC) aims to build on CHOG’s impressive legacy with staged professional productions of works by both Handel and his contemporaries. CHOC formally opened in 2016, and is already generating much interest both in Cambridge and further afield.
Rodelinda in the Great Hall
Cambridge Handel Opera Company (CHOC) mounted its inaugural staged production in April, 2018 with four acclaimed performances of Handel’s Rodelinda, HWV 19 in the Great Hall of the Leys, Cambridge. Operas by Handel will be presented in even numbered years while operas by contemporaries of Handel will be presented in the intervening years.