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Tin - Miracle Theatre and English Touring Opera's new collaboration

  • Date: 12 March 2012
  • Area: South West

Tin. Credit: Kirstin Prisk

As part of the Cultural Olympiad, an exciting collaboration between Cornwall's Miracle Theatre and English Touring Opera featuring Ben Luxon and local community choirs opens on 20 March.

Miracle Theatre Company is known for its performances in unexpected places, mainly for one night only. Tin is a new venture for them - a large scale collaboration with English Touring Opera, commissioned by the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site.

The production has a cast of ten professional performers including regular Miracle actors and singers from English Touring Opera. Following a large outreach and participation project, led by ETO, they will also be joined by a vibrant 'village chorus' recruited from schools and community choirs from across the region.

Miracle Director Bill Scott said:
"Tin is the most ambitious Miracle show to date and has had the longest gestation. It was 15 years ago that I saw a photo taken in 1911 of three actors posing outdoors, dressed for their parts in Beethoven's opera, Fidelio. It could have been Miracle Theatre a hundred years ago! These characters invaded another story that I was writing, based on a Victorian novel, Tin, which was about a real-life share swindle at a Cornish tin mine.

"In my story a travelling troupe of opera singers arrive in a town (St Just in Penwith in all but name) to give a performance of Fidelio and find themselves embroiled in a local banking fraud. Although the story is partly about the collision between the two very different worlds of tin mining and travelling theatre, at its heart Tin is a love story."

ETO's Artistic Associate Tim Yealland said:
"For ETO this partnership with Miracle is perfect from every point of view, not least because it allows us to work alongside Cornwall's most vibrant theatre company; it also lets us tap into the deep roots of Cornwall's powerful singing tradition."

As well as a rousing section of Beethoven's Fidelio, Tin also contains music specifically written for the play by Cornish composer Russell Pascoe. Cornish baritone Benjamin Luxon CBE will be returning to Cornwall to play the pivotal character 'East'.

This epic production will be staged in various locations across the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site, opening on 20 March at the new Heartlands site in Pool for 14 performances. It will then take residence on one of Cornwall's most westerly cliff-tops, in a large geodesic dome in front of the historic Count House at Botallack Mine for Easter Week (2 to 9 April). Devon is next stop at The Wharf, Tavistock on 11 and 12 April, before returning to East Cornwall at Sterts, Liskeard, between 17 and 21 April. The tour reaches its grand finale at the Hall for Cornwall in Truro on 23 & 24 April.

Further information about the performance, venues, dates and booking is available on the Miracle Theatre website.