A Thread Through Change/Until the Trans Lady Sings

A Double Bill Of New Opera Talent

2 Aug to 4 Sep

Full Price: £15 | Affordable: £5 | Online: £1 plus optional donation
Produced and presented by Manchester Contemporary Youth Opera and Truelove Tours

On Stage - Live Performance: 7:00pm -7:45pm, 2 August, £15/£5

Live Online - Interactive Broadcast: 6:00pm - 7:10pm, 6 August, £1

On Demand - Interactive Broadcast Recording: 6 August - 4 September, £1

EXPO MCYO: A thread through time

Music and Words:
Adventure through Mother Earth's Sewing Box:
JEFSMN (words and music)
Adela: Pat Shepherd (music), Arabella Watkiss (words)
Glimmerings: Dan Nolan (music) & Sam Woof McColl (words)

Re-fashioned in 2021 for the Tête-à-Tête Festival, these three potent short operas were originally conceived in ‘real-Manchester’ (2019) or ‘virtual-Manchester’ (2020). The opera-film Adventure through Mother Earth’s Sewing Box (2020) created by the virtual collective JEFSMN asks: “is a hobby an escape or further seclusion in a constricted world?” The world of Adela (2019) is portrayed by Lorca-inspired MJ and Adela freeing their minds in poetic flight, despite their bodies being held captive by their four walls. Shards of half-remembered, half-forgotten memories haunt siblings in Glimmerings (2019) as they mourn separately, yet together.

The interactive broadcast includes a discussion about MCYO making opera in Manchester together in 2019 and 2020.

MCYO are very grateful to their founding sponsor, the Henfrey Charitable Trust, for the generous support which has made possible their first appearance at Tête-à-Tête: The Opera Festival.

EXPO MCYO will run for 30 minutes.

Age range: All ages, but mostly adults
Content warnings: Some strong language

Until the Trans Lady Sings - An Autobiographical Spoken Word Opera

Words: Alice d’Lumiere

Alice is a poet who yearns to sing, but to her music seems terrifyingly stratified: Soprano, Contralto, Tenor, Bass; is the role you play always ordained by your vocal physiology? In the superficially respectable world of Opera gender seems temptingly bendy, unfortunately Alice can’t hold a note… This is a Spoken Word Overture in which full-time Performance Poet and part-time woman Alice d’Lumiere lays out a challenge in verse; which she calls on you to witness. She is giving herself a year to become a singer. She’s an outsider in gender, an outsider in opera and the clock to Tête à Tête: The Opera Festival 2022 is ticking…

In the interactive broadcast’s Q&A Alice answers your questions about her performance challenge, but more than that she hopes you can answer some of hers, for the world of opera does seem to be terribly complicated!

Until the Trans Lady Sings – An Autobiographical Spoken Word Overture will run for 10 minutes.

Age range: all ages, but mostly adults

We ask our audiences to stay home if there is any risk of infection, and to stick to one metre social distancing at all times. 

We continue to:

  • Reduce the number of people using spaces in the building
  • Maintain COVID safe cleaning regimes   
  • Make available bottles of hand sanitiser and wipes throughout the building
  • Open all the doors and windows to aid air-flow and fill the place with potted plants that cheer us all up (and calm us all down).

For this show we are keeping managed social distancing in place. 

We also request that everyone wear a mask when moving around the building, wash their hands often and practice self-distancing. Our companies and audiences will include Clinically Extremely Vulnerable people. We want everyone to feel and be safe.

  • You will be asked to queue outside in your bubbles, so wear weather-relevant clothes and let us know if you or anyone you know has a mobility or standing difficulty by emailing the Box Office.   
  • We will check you in on arrival. You may be asked for ID so please have some handy. 
  • We will show you straight into the auditorium - unless you need to use the facilities - where you will be seated in your bubbles
  • There will be one way systems in place.  Our gorgeous stewards will guide you and show you how to leave should you need to.
  •  In the auditorium, another gorgeous steward will check our seating plan and show you to your seat(s). Like in a restaurant. 


We will be running a normal bar service with extra tables for your drinking comfort.


For more information on how things work, have a look at our dedicated Covid:19 page.