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Don Pasquale – Opera in a Kebab Van?!?

It is opera but not as you know it. Kebabs 'v' Veggies and a serving of romance - sounds a little bit crazy on paper and therefore a Muddy must!

A brand new Welsh National Opera production of Don Pasquale is on its way to Norwich Playhouse this June.

I love something a little bit quirky and a comic opera set in a Cardiff kebab van sounds right up my street. As a Cardiff University Alumni I’m a wash with happy/drunken memories already. I can’t wait to see the story unfold as the romantically deluded Pasquale searches for a wife while is family try to turn his kebab shop into a trendy veggie van.

We caught up with Norina aka Harriet Eyley to find out more.

What attracted you to this production of Don Pasquale?

This piece is exciting in so many ways. It’s so far from the norm pulling strands from everywhere to try and bring it into the 21st Century.

Tell me about your character Norina.

She is a role I’ve always wanted to play. Musically the opera is just exquisite and I love the cheekiness of the character. This will be a very different Norina, though, and I think that’s great. She’s a vegan who wants to change the world.

By performing in many smaller venues, we are hoping to introduce new audiences to opera

In Don Pasquale, we will have the musicians on stage with us and I’m looking forward to that. It will be a whole new dynamic. The orchestra is usually confined to the pit so I think this will be fun and give them a taste of what it’s actually like to be on stage. It will be great for the audience, too, to see all the elements come together and collaborate on stage.

When did music and performing develop from a love to a career for you?

I’ve been involved in music since I was 10 or 11. My schools were always brilliant for music and I was always involved in the choirs and orchestras. Then I started singing lessons and eventually got scouted by The Royal Academy of Music and thought ‘if they think I can do this, then I have to go for it’. So at 17 I actually moved to the Academy and decided that if I have this gift then I need to use it and make a career out of it. I couldn’t live life without music being at the heart of it.

Are you looking forward to heading out on the road and visiting the likes of Norwich Playhouse?

I’ve never done a tour before and I’m very much looking forward to having a run of shows with Don Pasquale. It will give me the chance to fit into the role of Norina and see how that role develops on stage over time. It is very exciting and I feel very lucky.

Book tickets: £20-£23, Norwich Playhouse, Thurs 20 – Sat 22 June

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