Aside from his established career as an opera singer, John Savournin has created productions both as Artistic Director of Charles Court Opera, and as a freelance director, devisor, and writer, working primarily in Opera and Musical Theatre.
Recent Opera engagements include his main stage debut for Opera North with Trial by Jury, as part of the company’s season of Little Greats, and The Sorcerer & The Gondoliers for the National G&S Opera Company. This summer, he was due to direct The Pirates of Penzance for a co-production between Opera Holland Park and Charles Court Opera, which has been postponed due to the COVID 19 pandemic. He won the Offie award for Best Opera Production for his production of H.M.S. Pinafore for CCO in 2019.
He has written, devised and directed numerous education and outreach projects for companies such as Opera North, the Royal Opera House, Opera Holland Park and the Concordia Foundation, of which he is the Education Manager. He has directed Opera North’s series of Whistle Stop Operas to date, including The Mini Magic Flute, which was commissioned for the CBBC Summer Social, and What is Opera?, which aired on the BBC’s Opera Passion series. He has written several opera adaptations for the Royal Opera’s Opera Dots series, and directed an adaptation of The Pirates of Penzance for Opera Holland Park’s ‘Inspire’ programme, which toured the UK on its way to Penzance early in 2020.
As the Education Manager for the Concordia Foundation, he has written and directed original musical works for performances linked to and involving schools in London, including their most recent project The Man in the Moon – there’s no Planet B?, which focussed on climate change and recycling.
John founded CCO in 2005, and recent productions for the company include Iolanthe, The Mikado, H.M.S. Pinafore, Ruddigore, Buttons: A Cinderella Pantomime, King Tut – An Egypt Panto, and both Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Mozart’s The Magic Flute for co-productions with the Iford Arts Festival. He has written/directed CCO’s 13 pantomimes to date, often also appeared as the Dame or Villain, and also directed an evening entitled ‘Avant-garde’ for CCO, including Schoenberg’s Pierre Lunaire, Peter Maxwell-Davies’ Eight Songs for a Mad King and a series of Beckett shorts. For more information and a full list of productions John has directed for CCO, please visit their website: www.charlescourtopera.com
John Savournin’s production of Benjamin Britten’s Songs and Proverbs of William Blake for English Touring Opera was lost to the pandemic. However, during Autumn 2020, he directed three films: Grief, a new short opera by Amanda Holden and Nils Holger-Peterson for Opera Harmony, available on Opera Vision; Whistle-stop Opera – Cinderella for Opera North; and Charles Court Opera’s online pantomime, Snow White in the Seven Months of Lockdown.
Please note that this biography is not to be used for programmes. Current information is available on request.