Pop-Up Opera Tour 2021 – Week 1

On Monday we arrived at the rehearsal studio to find a wonderfully organised space with coloured tape marking out the one-way system, personal break-out zones, performance area, storage and warm-up area. It was very easy to navigate and really made you feel safe to rehearse under covid social restrictions. These markings enabled us to be safe, but also helped keep the rehearsals running smoothly, as we did not need to visually work out if we were 2 or 3 metres away from one another. Stay within the guide-lines and you were set to sail! I was grateful for this, as it meant I could concentrate on learning the staging (acting and choreography) and work on the crafting the musical numbers.

Here is a hand-drawn diagram, that I have made to help show the layout. 

Derek Clark, who had arranged the adaptations we were performing, joined us at the start of the week to go through all thing’s music. Derek cleverly chose the best bits of the two operettas: HMS Pinafore and Pirates of Penzance, in order to create arrangements that last 30 minutes each instead of the original two hours each. Perfect for a spontaneous Pop-Up performance. 

I worked alongside a fantastic team: 

Mark Nathan – Baritone 
Katie Barnett – Storyteller
Laura Sergeant – Cello
Ian Watt – Guitar
Jessica Leary – Soprano 
Allan Dunn – Director 
Ali Biggs – Stage Manager 
Anne Page – DSM
Patricia (Trish) Kenny – Costume
Mark Renfrew – Sound Engineer
Brian – Stage Hand and the all-important Lead Driver.  
Our Stage For The Tour

We worked through each show in chronological order, working out the choreography, costume changes and planned where the comedic and dramatic moments should fall. It was a lot of fun – and I adored being back in the rehearsal room creating a show with a team.

I had the pleasure of staying with Laura, my fellow Pop-Up tour mate, at her home in Larbert for the first two weeks of the tour. I was lucky to have splendid weather for walking, so that I could explore this area of Scotland. I particularly enjoyed walking around the woodland at Forth Valley Royal Hospital. There were clear pathways weaving between nature with thoughtfully placed benches to encourage little breaks to sit and hear birdsong. I was pleasantly surprised to see Swans in the Loch – this took me back to a beautiful pond I would visit regularly with my brothers and mum in Knutsford during the summer school holidays. We would go there feed a flock of Swans and enjoy a little family time. 

Here is a sweet video created by the hospital, to show the idyllic spots of the woods and suggest what can be enjoyed here. 

The tour started on Friday at Stirling Castle, Stirling with four shows over two days in was a glorious start to the tour.

Here are the dates and locations of our performances over the next couple of weeks:

For ticket information click HERE

33 thoughts on “Pop-Up Opera Tour 2021 – Week 1

    1. Hi Don, it’s just great to be back working I get to see some amazing places and meet lovely people. One elderly man I was chatting to (at a safe distance) told me he enjoyed our conversation because it was the first one in a long time and he loved Gilbert and Sullivan because he remembered performing it at school. Made my day.
      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. I’ve only performing in Trial by Jury before so learning the songs to these shows has been lots of fun and getting into different characters. I’m especially enjoying HMS Pinafore the soprano characters are fab.
      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. Had a lovely day today on my day off with Tom, I drove over to his, gorgeous day up here weather wise too.
      Best wishes to you both,
      Charlotte x

    1. thank you John, I love that song, I’m going to learn it thank you for sharing it with me.
      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. Thank you Sheila I have had a week or so to readjust to not being at home with George after such a long time being holed up, I wasn’t used to that feeling because prior to the pandemic we’ve always been working separately away from home.
      Best wishes
      Charlotte

      1. I know the feeling. Pretty and I quarantined together so it’s been an adjustment for her to be gone again for her business dealings.
        And now the pandemic threatens us all again with the variants. Stay safe and sane in your travels. I hope your tour both compensates and comforts you.

  1. Fabulous Charlotte, I also remember going with you to feed the swans and the cheeky ducks.😄 it all looks fantastic, so pleased your back doing what you love best, enjoy! 🥰😘

    1. Happy memories Gill, down at the Moor. On the road again 🎶🎵 see Don’s reply above, great tune.
      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. Thank you Christine, I’m a bit hectic at the moment doing last minute wedding stuff and learning new song material but I’m hoping I get in some sort of pattern soon. Hope you’ve managed to get a swim or two in with this beautiful weather.
      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. I’ve packed all my things up ready and we’re on our way to Inverness tomorrow a big journey from Glasgow. Best wishes to you too Pascal,
      Charlotte 😊

  2. Of course I am envious that you are in Scotland, in places I want to see! How nice that you are back in a production again, bringing opera to out of the way places that are sure to enjoy it! I did look up Falkirk’s Wheel – an amazing feat of engineering!

  3. With all the great news you share as you enjoy another Opera Tour, I should be ashamed of myself because I keep thinking: ‘Charlotte’s jacket is pink.’ Is she really traveling around Scotland wearing a pink jacket? I’ve given up. There’s no pulling you away from pink. I am glad that you’re having fun along the way. Take care.

  4. Yahoo!
    On the road again!!!!
    Woods and walks video is lovely!
    Everyone looks so happy! I understand why.
    Best to you, Charlotte!

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