Vivaldi's Bajazet Wins Outstanding Achievement in Opera Award

Friday, 11 March, 2022
Claire Booth, James Laing, Bajazet, Photo by Kip Carroll

We are delighted to announce that Bajazet, a co–production with the Royal Opera House in partnership with the Irish Baroque Orchestra, received the Outstanding Achievement in Opera Award for Peter Whelan and the Irish Baroque Orchestra at this year's Olivier Awards.

Dedicated to recognising exceptional productions and high-quality performances in West End theatre, dance and opera, the Olivier Awards are recognised internationally as the highest honour in British theatre, considered equivalent to Broadway's Tony Awards and France's Molière Award. Previous award winners include Kenneth Branagh, Judi Dench, Sharon D. Clarke and Helen Mirren.

Only two categories cover opera, and Irish National Opera is thrilled to have been nominated for both categories and to have won Outstanding Achievement in Opera - Peter Whelan and the Irish Baroque Orchestra for Irish National Opera’s Bajazet at Royal Opera House – Linbury Theatre.

Fergus Sheil Irish National Opera’s artistic director says “Irish National Opera’s success at the Oliver awards in London last night was an overwhelming joy. This award for Peter Whelan and the Irish Baroque Orchestra is a remarkable achievement. As well as Peter’s inspirational musicianship, it is a testament to the creativity, talent and dedication of everybody involved in our company – cast, creative team, technical crews and all the people behind the scenes. Everybody who has come together to make our artistic offering so vibrant and compelling.

The award also comes about as a result of the belief of our co-producers, the Royal Opera House, and our shared determination to bring this unknown Vivaldi opera to life.

Although Irish National Opera is only in its fifth year of operation, the company has already made a huge impact in Ireland and is now doing so internationally at the very highest level.”

This production of Bajazet premiered on 18 January 2022 amidst the ongoing and ever-changing COVID-19 climate. It was no easy task for all involved but these nominations are testament to the hard work and dedication of the team behind this critically acclaimed production which received praise from audiences and critics alike.

Bajazet completed its successful nationwide tour in Ireland on 30 January before heading to London to the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theatre for a sold-out run from 4 –12 February.

Many congratulations to Peter Whelan, the Irish Baroque Orchestra and the whole Bajazet team for their work on this production.