Two of the arts world’s leading figures, both of them Highgate residents, come together for an informal and enlightening Sunday afternoon conversation, comparing notes on their remarkable careers and the contrasts and overlaps between them.
John Caird, one of the country’s most celebrated and versatile theatre directors, is equally at home directing Shakespeare, musical theatre and opera. He is an honorary director of the RSC, where alongside countless Shakespeare and classical play productions he was jointly responsible for bringing both Nicholas Nickleby and Les Miserables to the stage, and has created and directed shows both in the UK and across the world, in particular in the USA, Sweden and Japan. As well as directing operas for companies such as Chicago, Houston and Welsh National Opera, John has also written libretti for operas by Andre Previn and Tarik O’Regan, as well as a large number of critically acclaimed musicals.
Sir Mark Elder has been at the forefront of British conducting for many years. He has been Music Director of the Hallé since September 2000, and was Music Director of English National Opera from 1979–1993, during which time he won an Olivier award for his outstanding work with the company. He has conducted most of the world’s major orchestras and opera companies, made countless CD recordings and appeared in a number of TV shows. A regular performer at the BBC Proms, he conducted the last night in 1987 and 2006. He was knighted in 2008 having been awarded a CBE in 1989, and was created Companion of Honour in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2017.
Highgate Festival is thrilled to have two such luminaries sharing the stage in what promises to be a fascinating and hugely entertaining event.