BBC Two Orders Opera History Two-Parter


LONDON: BBC Two has commissioned Reef Television to produce a two-part program exploring the history of opera, tentatively titled Lucy Worsley’s Nights at the Opera.

Lucy Worsley’s Nights at the Opera will be presented by Lucy Worsley, historian and chief curator at Historic Royal Palaces. The two hour-long films will look on as Worsley examines a number of famous operas against the backdrop of the cities in which they debuted. They will also feature Sir Antonio Pappano, music director of the Royal Opera House.

Lucy Worsley’s Nights at the Opera was ordered by Jan Younghusband, head of commissioning at BBC Music Television, and Patrick Holland, BBC Two’s channel editor. It will be directed by Guy Evans (The Secrets of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony). Executive producers include Reef’s head of factual, Ben Weston, and Elizabeth Hartford.

“Lucy Worsley has become one of U.K.’s most popular storytellers,” said Younghusband. “Along with Sir Antonio Pappano, we really couldn’t have a better team to celebrate and unpack the stories behind the origins of all the great opera tunes we love, and their context in wider history for a mainstream audience. We are delighted that this series marks an extension of the BBC’s long-running relationship with the Royal Opera House, bringing the best of opera and ballet to television.”

Weston added: “We’re delighted to be working for BBC Two and BBC Music again, and also to be collaborating with the V&A and Royal Opera House in such a prestigious season of programming.”