Time passes like clockwork, until everything changes…The world premiere of rising star composer Tom Coult's new opera with a libretto by acclaimed playwright Alice Birch.

Minutes and Seconds and Hours take
Centuries to fall into days.
And yet
Last night.
Last night I thought I felt it quicken.
And I willed it on.

In a muddied nightdress, in a country kitchen, Violet finally smiles. All these years her tired daily routine has been dictated by the inescapable chime of the Clock Tower. Tick tock. Take your tablets. Tick tock. Husband will be home soon. Until the night she feels time quicken.

An hour disappears.
Each day. Every day.
Like clockwork.
And she’s never felt more alive.
With the townspeople in crisis, can Violet finally escape?

Combining the acclaimed talents of playwright Alice Birch, known for her powerful female-centred writing, and rising star composer Tom Coult, this is opera for now and about now.

Tom Coult music
Libretto by Alice Birch

Elizabeth Atherton Violet
Richard Burkhard
Frances Gregory
Andrew Mackenzie-Wicks The Clockkeeper

Jude Christian
Rosie Elnile
set designer
costume designer
Jackie Shemesh
lighting designer
Adam Sinclair
Marty Moore
production Manager

London Sinfonietta

Andrew Gourlay

Sung in English with surtitles

A co-production for the Aldeburgh Festival by Britten Pears Arts and Music Theatre Wales
Production staged in association with the London Sinfonietta
Commissioned by Britten Pears Arts and Music Theatre Wales, in association with Theater Ulm

Pre-performance talk

Join us for a pre-performance talk at 6.30pm in the Peter Pears Recital Room. Tickets are free but must be booked in advance as spaces are limited.

Book your place here

Violet performs for a second time on Sunday 5 June at 4pm

Dates & times

  • Book Now