personic is a non-for-profit company, which was formed in November 2014 by Rhian Hutchings. Just like Rhian, Opersonic is Newport born and bread.
Their purpose? To enable young people to own opera, as audiences, participants, creators and leaders. They say Operasonic creates a range of opportunities for young people to explore, create and experience opera.
I look forward to finding out about them next week, as they're a guest on my radio show. Kindly, as a thank you for having them on my show, they invited me to their latest show, Newport Legends, at The Riverfront.
Operasonic brought together 4 choirs to make this show a reality. These were Clytha Primary School, St Woolos Primary School, St Michaels RC Primary School and a specially formed community choir from Maindee. The age range was massive, at 7-70, which proves it's never too late to get into the performing arts industry.
I asked Rhian is there's a criteria for people to meet, before being able to join. She said 'At the moment, we don’t have a regular group that meets, as we are project funded. I’m planning some holiday workshops for next year – maybe an Easter week and a Summer week. But I need to raise some funding first!
I’m also talking to various schools about doing a range of school projects across the year. So ideally, there will be some targeted projects and also some open access projects where young people can come and get involved'.
By this, it seems that the company is new and fresh, ready to try out a whole heap of projects. We know this feeling all too well at Newport City Radio.
The show told a mixture of true stores and legends within Newport. I think this is was a great idea. It made the show educational and interesting. It was very clever to wrap the story, for example, of John Frost and the Chartist Movement into a 15-minute segment of song and dance. It would be great to see more of these kinds of show in Newport.
If I had to describe the show in one sentence, I'd say that it was pretty much a school play on a much larger, more professional scale. Most of the audience members were relations of the children in the show.
The quality of the show was top notch, even with the evident budget Opersonic were restricted to. The show was obviously well-rehearsed and was delivered well, with 0 mistakes, to my knowledge.
Even so, the show was great to watch. It was family fun at a professional level. The fact that it was a great show that brought the community and helped the skills of young people is a win-win for everyone.
I look forward to interviewing Opersonic next week, as well as following their projects over the next few years, to see what they come up with. You can catch my interview with them next week, live on radio by listening to Newport City Radio on Wednesday 12th July at 5pm.