The Re:Discover festival is Streetwise Opera’s flagship project in 2024. We are co-creating a triple bill of new operas inspired by the music of composers of African and Caribbean heritage.

The project explores, and reintroduces Streetwise Opera participants to, a range of composers including Ignatius Sancho, George Bridgetower, Joseph Bologne (Chevalier de Saint-Georges), Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, Florence Price, Margaret Bonds and Shirley Thompson. Re:Discover draws inspiration from, and responds to, the music of these composers.

A librettist and three composers have been co-creating new stories and music, alongside Streetwise Opera performers, culminating in three new short operas. A director in each region will work with a individuals with lived experience of homelessness to bring these pieces to life.

The operas, approximately 12 to 15 minutes in length each, are being created in each of the three cities in which Streetwise Opera works: London, Nottingham and Manchester. We will present each piece as part of a festival.

Soprano Abigail Kelly joins Re:Discover as Festival Director and will lead on co-creating an artistic programme that celebrates the work of classical and folk composers of African and Caribbean heritage.

Writer and actor Paterson Joseph is the Librettist for Re:Discover and has now worked across all three cities to co-create three individual, but connected, stories with Streetwise Opera participants.

We  commissioned composers Pete Letanka in London, Lavender Rodriguez in Manchester and David Austin Grey in Nottingham to work alongside Streetwise Opera participants and clients at frontline homelessness services to create the music for three short operas.

In the coming weeks we will begin to work on the staging of these operas, led by directors TD Moyo in London, Amy Hailwood in Manchester and Beth Kapila in Nottingham. Debbie Duru will lead on production and costume design.

Performance dates

The Re:Discover festival will be held on the following dates. More details about specific events will be added soon. 

  • Monday 27 and Tuesday 28 May at St John’s Waterloo in London
  • Friday 7 and Saturday 8 June at the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester
  • Friday 19 and Saturday 20 July at the Nottingham Playhouse in Nottingham

Artistic Team

Abigail Kelly

Festival Director

Paterson Joseph


Pete Letanka

Composer, London

Lavender Rodriguez

Composer, Manchester

David Austin Grey

Composer, Nottingham

TD. Moyo

Director, London

Amy Hailwood

Director, Manchester

Beth Kapila

Director, Nottingham

Debbie Duru

Set & Costume Designer

Laura Asare

Dramaturg, London

Princess Arinola Adegbite

Dramaturg, Manchester

Carol Leeming

Dramaturg, Nottingham