The Wokingham Paper

Comedy in song thanks to Opera at Bearwood’s summer show

Poster Final without word

SUMMER is the perfect time for picnics and memorable theatre experiences and what better way to combine the two by taking in an opera at Bearwood College?

Over the next week, The Bartered Bride will be performed at the Sindlesham venue by local company Opera At Bearwood.

The society aims to bring a grand opera each year to the Thames Valley, mixing the talented amateurs with professional and semi-professional soloists and musicians. It is always produced to a high standard, receiving positive reviews from both first-time visitors and regular audiences.

As well as the comfortable theatre for the production itself opera goers are invited to bring their own and enjoy a ‘Glyndebourne-style’ picnic before each production in the beautiful grounds of Bearwood College.

Smetana’s Bartered Bride is a comic opera in three acts and will be staged in full traditional style with authentic costumes for the cast, authentic scenery on stage and an orchestra fitting for the very enjoyable music from Smetana’s score.

Bartered Bride is set in an early 19th century Czechoslovakian village and follows the lives of the peasant and wealthy residents.

It tells the story of Marenka (the Bartered Bride) who is in love with Jenik and whose peasant parents and the local marriage broker want her to marry Vasek, the son of the wealthy landowner.

Through youthful wit and cunning pitted against the forces of tradition and vested financial interests they achieve their heart’s desire. Overall Bartered Bride is one of the best “feel-good” operas in the repertoire with an uplifting happy and often comic story with fabulous musical accompaniment.

Since the 2013 production of Carmen under new musical director Justin Lavender, the Opera At Bearwood’s production quality has gone from strength to strength with a new and expanded orchestral ensemble and talented principals and chorus members.

The Bartered Bride is being performed at 7.30pm each evening from Thursday, July 9 to Saturday, July 11, with a matinee on Saturday at 2.30pm.

To book, or for more information, call 0118 966 5414 or visit

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