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Current Tour Dates

Current Tour:

Shoulder to Shoulder

Moving, uplifting, and funny, Shoulder to Shoulder tells the real-life stories of men overcoming loneliness and social isolation. A top-flight ensemble of singers and musicians bring stories to life on stage this November. Shoulder to Shoulder is produced in partnership with Men’s Sheds Cymru.

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WELCOME to Swansea City Opera. Since 2006, we’ve toured high-quality opera to venues throughout the UK. Our tours include many theatres that rarely programme opera. We aim to make the world of opera accessible to everyone.

In partnership with Mens Sheds Cymru we created an original chamber opera – Shoulder to Shoulder. 

Shoulder to Shoulder | Swansea City Opera | Opera Dinas Abertawe

Through outreach work in 2020 – 2021, we developed a partnership with Men’s Sheds Cymru, part of an internationally acclaimed movement founded in Australia, which improves men’s well-being. Men’s Sheds Cymru supports men experiencing and at risk of loneliness and social isolation.

Brendan Wheatley, Co-Artistic Director of Swansea City Opera, created a libretto based on ‘Shedders’ stories which span the funny to the moving and thought-provoking. The opera is composed by composer and clarinettist Lenny Sayers, who is a member of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.

Shoulder to Shoulder’s ensemble features professional singers and musicians, mainly from Wales; many of whom sing and play in major opera houses, companies, and orchestras, including the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; Glyndebourne Festival Opera; Welsh National Opera; English National Opera; Opera North; Scottish Opera, and the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

Soprano Jess Robinson who plays the role of Gwen was a finalist in 2023’s prestigious BBC Cardiff Singer of the World.

We are delighted to be working with choirs and choral societies, including the Brecon Singers, Haverfordwest Operatic Society, Llysfaen Singers, and the Canton Chorus, during the tour of Shoulder to Shoulder. They will perform on different dates during the tour.

Due to the huge demand with more people wanting to take part in the project, we’ve launched a fundraising campaign through Local Giving


To run alongside the November tour of Swansea City Opera’s tour of Shoulder to Shoulder, we’re running a light-hearted competition, together with Men’s Sheds Cymru, to find Wales’ Best Garden Gnome.  It may be your gnome or it could live down your street, head to our news section here to find out more. Details here.  

The winner receives a pair of tickets for a performance of Shoulder To Shoulder of their choice.  The competition runs throughout October. The closing date is Sunday 5 November.   

Our engagement work. 

We believe music is a universal language. We believe opera is for everyone. This philosophy has seen us develop Shoulder to Shoulder and earlier projects such as Tower Opera created with a mining community.

Singing builds connections between people, develops self-confidence, and allows people to discover more about the craft of staging a professional opera. Working with local communities has become one of the most satisfying and inspiring elements of our work and something for which we’ve become renowned.

One of the highlights of touring opera is our work with local community choirs. They sing alongside our ensemble of professional singers and musicians in some of the world’s greatest operas, from Mozart’s Don Giovanni to Verdi’s La Traviata to operas less frequently performed, such as Delibes’ Lakme.

Our international work. 

In Wales and internationally, we’re building our reputation in engagement.

In 2019, we were thrilled to be the first Welsh arts organization to be funded by the British Council Cultural Protection Fund.

We developed Our Heritage, a unique programme in Lebanon, funded by the British Council’s £30 million Cultural Protection Fund, which collected the unique cultural heritage traditions and memories of Palestinian and Syrian refugees. There are 1.5 million Syrian refugees in Lebanon; many people have been displaced for half a generation making it vital that Syrian culture – from dance to singing and music – is preserved. Palestinian refugees first arrived in Lebanon during the 1940s. The Shatila refugee camp was established over 70 years ago, meaning new traditions of festivals, music, and oral history have developed over the years.  You can read more about Our Heritage here.

We want to develop more partnerships with other Men’s Sheds Cymru groups and other community projects in both Wales and England. Swansea City Opera is also keen to develop international collaborations building on the success of our British Council project.

If you’ve got a project idea that you’d like to talk to us about, please get in touch:







  • An absolute delight!

    SWANSEA City Opera's Barber of Seville is an absolute delight. If you want to give someone their first taste of opera, but find ticket prices and long journeys off putting, not to mention impenetrable plots or arty-farty reworking, then you couldn't do better than to catch Swansea City Opera.
    South Devon Journal – Barber of Seville
  • Comic opera was superb!

    APART from a couple of the more famous scenes, I had never actually seen a full length opera before this so was unsure what to expect. For my first opera it couldn't have gone better — if all operas were as well delivered as this one was, I'd invest in a pair of opera glasses today!
    Swansea Evening Post – Barber of Seville
  • Bravura performances!

    This company always delivers the goods, and when the goods is a deliciously uplifting slice of Mozart, it can be very good indeed.
    South Devon Journal – Cosi fan tutte
  • Captivated within minutes!

    I faced Swansea City Opera’s performance of Donizetti’s The Daughter of the Regiment on an empty stomach (well, bar a bag of crisps and half a square of millionaire’s shortbread). Only someone with full liver failure could have viewed it with a more jaundiced eye - and I was captivated within minutes!
    BBC Classical Music Online – Daughter of the Regiment
  • A triumph in every respect!

    The work of Swansea City Opera cannot be praised too highly. They bring high quality opera to theatres which are too small or remote to receive even slightly larger companies, and give audiences the chance to hear opera as it should be heard, with excellent singers and musicians, and with unpretentious but satisfying direction. This was a great evening of entertainment and music, thoroughly enjoyable and to be unreservedly recommended.
    Seen And Heard Opera Review - L’Elisir d’Amore
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