Themba Mvula

Zambian-born Operatic Baritone

Themba Mvula is a Zambian-born operatic baritone based in the UK.

to Oct 25

The Elixir of Love

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Following Carmen, La Traviata and the Olivier Award nominated La bohème, the King's Head Theatre present a quirky, romantic and enchanting new take on Donizetti’s dazzling comic opera. 1982. In the Welsh seaside town of Barry Island, lovelorn poet Nemorino’s affections for the charismatic Italian immigrant, Adina, are met with indifference. Luckily for him, Dulcamara, a travelling peddler has the perfect solution... a love potion. As the Falklands war gains momentum and Thatcherism ravages the UK, can these two young romantics find happiness in a time of uncertainty and division?

Sung in a new English version by Chris Harris and David Eaton

Company - King’s Head Theatre

Composer - Donizetti

Director - Hannah Noone

Musical Director - David Eaton

Brandon (Belcore) - Themba Mvula

Adina - Alys Roberts

Nicky (Nemorino) - David Pouten

Dulcamara - Matthew Kellet

Gina - Caroline Taylor

Themba will be performing on the following dates: 25th, 26th, 27th, 28th, 30th September. 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th (matinee), 5th, 7th, 8th, 9th (matinee), 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th (matinee), 12th, 14th, 16th (matinee), 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th (matinee), 19th, 21st, 23rd (matinee) 23rd, 24th & 25th October.

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to Aug 11

The Elixir of Love

Composer - Donizetti

Company - Norfolk Into Opera Festival 2019

Director - Genevieve Raghu

Conductor - John Andrews

Belcore - Themba Mvula

Into Opera’s brand new production of Donizetti’s comic opera, The Elixir of Love is set to be the perfect potion to get you ‘into’ opera.

Set in rural Norfolk during World War 1 and perfomed at the atmospheric Octagon Barn in Little Plumstead, this production will offer audiences an immersive and imaginative opera experience.

Men have started heading to war, leaving jobs back at home on the land and the factories empty. Adina swaps skirts for trousers and steps up to run her family farm, working on the fields, managing staff and recruiting more women for support. One of the loyal labourers, Nemorino, who has always cared deeply for Adina has remained at the farm to support her. As he watches her lead, inspire and keep up the spirits of the work force, his feelings, passion and admiration for her grows. When Sergeant Belcore visits the farm he quickly becomes captivated by Adina. When at War, there is no time to lose, so Belcore acts fast, determined to love and win Adina. But Nemorino won’t give up. Nemorino buys a magical medicine from the travelling salesman, Dulcamara. This elixir of love promises to solve all his problems and to give Nemorino a sure advantage in the battle for Adina’s heart.

Bubbling with comedy and bursting with beautiful melodies, The Elixir of Love is without a doubt one of Donizetti’s greatest operas. This production will be performed in English in an especially adapted translation by Norfolk’s own David Parry.

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7:30 PM19:30

The Consul

Composer - Gian Carlo Menotti

Company - Welsh National Opera

Director - Max Hoehn

Conductor - Justin Brown

Assan - Themba Mvula

Gian Carlo Menotti’s 1950 work The Consul – about the desperate wait for a visa – could not be more topical. Menotti's urgent appeal for more compassion and humanity is the opera for our times.

This semi-staged suspense-filled piece takes place in an anonymous European totalitarian state and is packed with emotion and surprises. 

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to Jun 2

Dido and Aeneas

Composer - Henry Purcell

Company - English National Opera

Director - Purni Morell

Conductor - Valentina Peleggi

Themba Mvula - Member of the Ensemble

Belinda is the only child of Dido. A teenager like any other. We watch through her eyes as her mother – heroine, feminist icon, modern parent – slowly starts to fall apart, with tragic consequences.

ENO and the Unicorn Theatre, the UK’s leading theatre for young audiences, join forces for the first time to create a new production of Purcell’s masterpiece, Dido and Aeneas, for teenagers and adults.

This show will be an incredible first experience for some, and for others, a chance to see this opera in a new light.

Directed by the Unicorn’s former Artistic Director Purni Morell and conducted by Valentina Peleggi – the newest ENO Mackerras Conducting Fellow.

This production features designs by Khadija Raza, a finalist of the Linbury Prize for Stage Design in 2017.

This reimagining of the classic tale will be performed on the Unicorn’s intimate Weston Theatre stage.

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to Mar 17

Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk

Composer - Dmitri Shostakovich

Company - Birmingham Opera Company

Director - Graham Vick

Conductor - Alpesh Chauhan

City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra

Themba Mvula - The Engineer, The Arresting Office, The Prison Guard

The wife has married for money.

She and her husband are tyrannised by the Father in Law bitter that they have not bred him a grandchild.

When the husband leaves on business the wife takes a lover - a new worker. The Father inLaw finds out and whips the lover to the brink of death. The wife poisons her father in law. Determined to make her new found happiness last she kills the husband, hides the body and marries the lover.

The police, unhappy at not being invited to the wedding crash the party and find the body.

In prison, she finds out exactly who she has married.

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to Jan 31

Porgy and Bess

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Composer - George Gershwin

Company - English National Opera

Director - James Robinson

Conductor - James Gaffigan

Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra

Themba Mvula - Soloist, Member of the Ensemble

Everyone knows the hits from the opera and 1959 film Porgy and Bess, which include ‘Summertime’, ‘I Got Plenty O’ Nuttin’’, ‘Bess, You Is My Woman Now’ and ‘It Ain’t Necessarily So’. 

The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess is a unique opera and a popular favourite in which George Gershwin mixed jazz with the western opera tradition and Afro-American and Russian Jewish music.

Special discounts are availalable for those of 16 and younger!


The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess stirred widespread controversy when it was first staged in 1935, playing into negative clichés surrounding poor black people living on the fringes of society. In fact, The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess, even though the story is set among Afro-Americans, is mainly a social drama.

Gershwin’s infectious music in Porgy and Bess makes it equally beloved by younger audiences. Kids aged 16 and under receive a discount on tickets to this production.

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7:00 PM19:00

Concert of music by Sebastiano Dessanay

New compositions for Solo Baritone and Quartet

Baritone - Themba Mvula

Violin - Dave LePage

Clarinet - Jack McNeill

Piano - Melissa Morris

Double Bass - Sebastiano Dessanay

Sardinian composer and double bassist Sebastiano Dessanay presents ten new compositions written on poems by two Sardinian authors, Pasquale Dessanai, the famous poet from Nuoro, whose centenary from his death occurs in 2019, and Fanny Satta, from Gavoi, who at the age of 100 published a book of poetry in Italian.
Despite the music of Dessanay funds its roots in contemporary music of the twentieth century, is also characterized by a strong melodic sense that on this occasion has been deliberately accentuated in order to enrich and give a further dimension to the texts, in Sardinian dialect and Italian. The chosen poems deal with the most varied topics, from descriptions of landscapes, scenes and situations of Sardinian social life, to more universal themes such as the relationship between two lovers, aging, and death.

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to Nov 17

Porgy and Bess

Composer - George Gershwin

Company - English National Opera

Themba Mvula - Ensemble, Soloist

More than 80 years after its premiere, Porgy and Bess receives its first ENO staging. Written for a large cast, with a 40-voice chorus speciallyformed for this production, and full orchestra, Porgy and Bess is infused with unforgettable melodies, including the much-loved ‘Summertime’. This is a stage work that is emotionally charged, powerful and moving, delivered through jazz, ragtime, blues and spirituals. 

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9:00 PM21:00


Company - Asking4It Productions

Composer - Ashley John Long

Librettist - Jane Fox

Preist - Themba Mvula

A multi-layered story about the trade in human beings in a beautiful psychological chamber opera for four voices, harp, oboe, cello and percussion.

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