Jonathan Dove’s operatic writing has a reputation for creating wonder and enriching lives and this new choral work tells the story of refugee communities throughout the Mediterranean region. Vivid snapshots of a peaceful home life turn to visceral images of unrest, and the audience will travel through strange landscapes and across borders, discovering the courage it takes to leave loved ones and take desperate risks in order to survive.

Odyssey will be performed by Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, City of Bristol Choir, Bristol Youth Choir and Bristol Windrush Reggae Choir. Soprano Francesca Chiejina and tenor Thando Mjandana perform lead roles and it is conducted by conductor David Ogden.

Soprano Francesca Chiejina

Preceding the evening performance, a day of creativity will celebrate the lives and talents of Bristol’s refugee and asylum seeker community as part of Be Kind Bristol. This day-long celebration, co-curated by members of Bristol’s refugee and asylum seeker community, is set to fill Bristol Beacon with music, dance, poetry, puppetry and crafts on Sunday 28 January.

Bristol Beacon has also partnered with Bristol City of Sanctuary for the event to produce an especially composed piece of music to open the concert.

Another specially composed piece of music will precede Odyssey, thanks to a partnership between Bristol Beacon and Bristol City of Sanctuary. Music facilitators MoYah, Alex Lupo, Ebony Love and Lewin Hayes are working with City Academy & May Park schools which are both ‘Sanctuary Schools’ on the piece – schools that have committed to being a safe and welcoming place for people whose lives were in danger in their own country.

Odyssey has been co-commissioned by Bristol Beacon, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and City of Bristol Choir. For more tickets and information see here.