Dunhurst pupil makes opera debut

Posted on 11th March 2019

A pupil from Bedales Prep School, Dunhurst made his professional debut over the weekend in a opera production directed by a former Bedales student.

Block 2 (Year 8) pupil Harry Hetherington appeared in The Turn of the Screw at Bury Court Opera in Farnham, Surrey, on Saturday (9 March), and is set to appear in two further performances on 14 and 16 March.

Based on the Henry James’ novella of the same name, The Turn of the Screw has been a regular in operatic repertoire since the 1950s, recalling the story of a young governess who has been hired to look after two young children at a remote estate, where she becomes convinced the grounds are haunted.

Harry, who has been in rehearsals for the production since January, plays Miles, the elder of the two children under the governess’ care.

Music scholars at Dunhurst made the journey to see Harry in one of the last rehearsals of the production on Friday before it officially opened on Saturday. The production is the latest directed by opera and theatre director Ella Marchment, who attended Bedales herself from 2002–2005.

Head of Dunhurst Colin Baty said: “We are all so very proud of Harry auditioning and being offered the role of Miles in The Turn of the Screw. I know he will get so much out of this experience working in a professional theatre.”

Dunhurst’s Director of Music, Ben Harlan, added: “Harry gave an outstanding performance as Miles in The Turn of the Screw at Bury Court Opera. The Dunhurst Music Award holders went to see him in a dress rehearsal on Friday and we were spellbound by the stagecraft, music and singing. Harry has mastered extremely difficult vocal passages and worked as professionally as the adult cast members.”

Bury Court Opera | Ella Marchment | Bedales Prep School, Dunhurst