Media Release: Elephant opera Big Give challenge

Embargoed: December 6 00.01

SCOTTISH Opera’s getting involved in the Big Give Christmas Challenge to fund new children’s opera The Elephant Keepers.

The Garfield Weston Foundation has pledged to match donations up to £250,000 to be split between selected UK charities from 6 – 8 December, meaning any money given to Scottish Opera will effectively be doubled. The pledge is on a first come, first served basis over the three days, with donations opening at 10am each day.

Author Bernard MacLaverty and composer, Gareth Williams, who collaborated previously for Scottish Opera on Five 15:Operas Made In Scotland in 2008, will create The Elephant Keepers.

The opera is inspired by a true story from their native Northern Ireland about Sheila, a baby elephant at Belfast Zoo during the Blitz, who was taken home by one of her keepers each night to try to keep her safe, bedding her down in the family’s garage.

Not only will donations help fund and entirely new opera for 480 school children in communities across Scotland, all donors will be acknowledged in the finished score.


For additional press details please contact:

Kerryn Hurley, Press Manager, 0141 242 0511,

Emma York, Press Officer, 0141 242 0552,

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Contact: Emma York
Phone: 0141 242 0552