Grange Park Opera is a charity | Support

Hansel & Gretel

Hansel & Gretel guest pack


Hansel & Gretel
Talking Points



The protagonists need no introduction.


  • It is 1965. Failing pop star, Arnold Dorsey is advised by his manager to find a catchier name. As Engelbert Humperdinck Please Release Me sells
    80,000 copies in a day and fends off Penny Lane from the top of the charts
  • When Wagner was running out of steam on Parsifal (1880-1), he asked The Real Humperdinck to write some scene change music. Mrs Wagner (Cosima) was godmother to Engelbert’s only son, Wolfram
  • Relatively little was known about Humperdinck until his granddaughter Eva (a Doctor of Music and a nun) published his letters. She has written a statement pointing to errors in Pachl’s book on Siegfried Wagner, the composer’s son and pupil of Engelbert (google Eva Humperdinck)
  • Many recent productions have been set in sink estates. We’ve gone more Charles Dickens
  • Susan Bullock (witch/mother) has sung major Wagner roles on every continent; William Dazeley (father/brush-maker) was in our 2007 Falstaff; Soraya Mafi (Gretel) was Constance in our 2013 Carmelites – her first professional role. She has since appeared at the Châtelet, ENO, WNO
Dress Code, Grange Park Opera

Elegant. Most people wear black tie / gorgeous dresses. Don’t be afraid to be creative

Opera is about feelings. You need know nothing in advance. Just sit in the theatre and have feelings . . .

Also see . . .

The gardens


View map

Grange Park Opera Map


The company

Founded 1998
78 Productions
450+ performances

a charity without government subsidy




  • Operas take place in a new five–storey opera house, nestling in the woods by 15th century West Horsley Place
  • The new opera house opened in June 2017 and since then more than 30,000 people have visited
  • It was built in just 10 months and £11.4m was raised from individuals
  • During the company’s 22 year history, repertoire has included lesserknown operas such as Thaïs, Don Quichotte (Massenet), Carmélites (Poulenc) Enchantress (Tchaikovsky), Love for Three Oranges (Prokofiev), Eliogabalo (Cavalli)
  • Fiddler on the Roof, starring Bryn Terfel, was at the 2015 BBC Proms
  • The world première of Pushkin was presented in 2018 by Moscow’s Novaya Opera orchestra and chorus
  • The company pioneers younger audiences and younger artists



Annual memberships are payable by monthly direct debit from as little as £20 per month

Members make the 2020 season and allow the work in prisons, primary schools and with young people.

Find out more


6 June to 19 July

Image credit: Melanie Harding/Millennium Images



Meet Me in St Louis at Grange Park Opera

Meet me in St Louis

Meet me in St Louis

La Gioconda at Grange Park Opera

La Gioconda

La Gioconda

La Boheme at Grange Park Opera

La Bohème

La Bohème