Handel in the Theatre is a professional opera company established in Canberra by countertenor Tobias Cole, “one of the great treasures of artistic life in Canberra” (Limelight).
In 2017 we presented our second production, Esther:
“A cohesive and entertaining account of this esoteric work … has set a significantly high benchmark…” – Arts Review
“… a wonderful opportunity to hear Handel’s score beautifully played and sung. That it was staged so well by Tobias Cole was an added bonus.” – Canberra Critics Circle
“… resonates after the curtain has come down, ensuring that the music of Handel is heard, energetically discussed and enjoyed” – The Canberra Times
“SHOULD an Oratorio written 300 years ago be performed today? If you love well-crafted productions and superbly sung performances, the answer is yes.” – City News
In September 2018 we present Handel’s Susanna, featuring Jacqueline Porter, Tobias Cole, Robert Macfarlane, and Jeremy Kleeman.
Our company creates opportunities for Canberra artists to develop their practice in baroque music and perform at a professional level in our own community. We develop singers through our professional Dramatic Chorus, which rehearses over three months with our Artistic Director Tobias Cole, Director Caroline Stacey and Choreographer Belynda Buck. We also develop musicians through our orchestra, comprising mostly local players, under the leadership of Bianca Porcheddu (Canberra’s own Australian Brandenburg Orchestra violinist) and conductor Brett Weymark.
Our philosophy also emphasises community involvement. Our Balcony Chorus enables more singers to be involved, with just three weeks of rehearsals preparing them to add a powerful musical highlight to the show. We will also hold three open rehearsals of the Dramatic Chorus in the National Portrait Gallery, giving Canberra music-lovers the chance to observe the rehearsal process and get to know the music.
All funds raised will go towards the professional fees and rehearsal costs for the Dramatic Chorus and the Orchestra. As a result, your donation will not only help to create a powerful baroque opera experience for audiences; you’ll also be developing the pool of Canberra musicians with high level experience in this art form. Your support may even help some of our artists to further their careers in the current revival of baroque opera!