Major New Commission for 2018

David Sawer

Leading British composer David Sawer and celebrated young playwright Rory Mullarkey have been commissioned by Garsington Opera to write a new work - The Skating Rink (based on the novel by Chilean author Roberto Bolaño).  It will have its world premiere during the 2018 season and will be Garsington Opera’s first new festival commission. 

Douglas Boyd, Artistic Director of Garsington Opera said: 

‘I am delighted that we have reached a stage in our development as a company where we will be presenting a major new festival commission.  I strongly believe in our responsibility as musicians to create new works of art that will stand alongside great works of the past, both for audiences today and in the future.  David Sawer is one of the leading lights of our generation and has a wonderful flair for dramatic character.  Together with librettist Rory Mullarkey they are creating a work that is theatrically thrilling and musically exhilarating. This is a very important step for us and I can’t wait to share this new work with our audience and the wider world.’ 

David Sawer’s first full-length opera From Morning to Midnight was commissioned by English National Opera and his operetta Skin Deep, to a libretto by Armando Iannucci, was premiered by Opera North and Royal Danish Opera.  Major orchestral scores include Byrnan Wood, the greatest happiness principle and Flesh and Blood and he has written several choral and chamber works as well as music for the theatre and for radio. His music is frequently performed at the BBC Proms, with his most recent work April \ March, a ballet score for the Royal Ballet, premiered there by the London Sinfonietta in 2016.  Performances of his works recorded by BBC Symphony Orchestra/Andrew Davis/Martyn Brabbins, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group/Susanna Mälkki and Aurora Orchestra/Nicholas Collon can be found on the NMC label.

Rory Mullarkey is an award winning writer who has won the George Devine Award for Most Promising Playwright and the Harold Pinter Commission for Plays The Wolf From The Door (Royal Court 2014), and the James Tait Black Prize for Drama Cannibals (Manchester Royal Exchange).  Plays also include Each Slow Dusk (Pentabus Theatre/UK Tour), Single Sex (Manchester Royal Exchange), The Grandfathers (NT Connections, then Bristol Old Vic/National Theatre), On The Threshing Floor (Heat&Light at Hampstead Theatre). Adaptations/translations include The Oresteia by Aeschylus (Shakespeare's Globe), Remembrance Day by Aleksey Scherbak (Royal Court). Libretti include The Way Back Home (ENO/Young Vic, music by Joanna Lee). Rory is currently under commission to The National Theatre, The Royal Court Theatre, The Almeida Theatre, The Michael Grandage Company and The Royal Exchange Theatre and is writing a libretto for the Royal Opera House.