Retrospect Opera

Great British Operas On Record

What was new? Some of our old news...

There was a conference at the University of Surrey, on Women’s Suffrage (29-30 June), in which Ethel Smyth featured prominently. Chris Wiley was part of the organising team. More details at

The keynote speakers were:

• Irene Cockroft, author of Women in the Arts & Crafts and Suffrage Movements at the Dawn of the 20th Century

• Elizabeth Crawford, author of The Women’s Suffrage Movement in Britain and Ireland

 In Canada, Tom Quick broadcasts a regular programme on women in classical music (performers as well as composers), and he included extracts from our re-release of The Wreckers in his programme on 8 July, as well as the Overture from our recording of The Boatswain’s Mate. Tom is a great supporter of Retrospect Opera. The programme is on from 10pm till midnight local time, on, and you can listen to it live. Tom included several ‘plugs’ for Retrospect Opera.

The Boatswain’s Mate and Fête Galante were staged by Opera 5, in Toronto, last June: the reviews have been excellent. We were very proud of our part in enabling the production to go ahead.

Our recording of The Boatswain’s Mate was made top selection in BBC Radio 3’s weekly series ‘Building a Library’. It was described as “a must for any self-respecting Smyth collection or collection of British music” and “it’s really The Boatswain’s Mate, bursting with cheekiness and fun, that stands out here. It’s a young cast, but giving us committed, accomplished performances, and the only chance we have to hear this little gem of an opera.” You can hear the podcast here. It’s generated a great deal of interest, and endorses what we’re trying to do - to make music available that would not otherwise be so. 

Don’t forget - we sell worldwide! 

And click on Stagetalk, the online theatre magazine, for a piece about Retrospect Opera, The Boatswain’s Mate, and, briefly, about Pickwick.  

In October 2016, Opera magazine made The Boatswain's Mate their Disc of the Month! Please click here to go to the Sales page, where you can find more information. We also had a good write-up in BBC Music Magazine (December 2016) and a glowing one in Musical Opinion, and many other really positive reviews.

There's a very interesting in-depth interview with Odaline de la Martinez, (interviewed by Robert Hugill, of the review site Planet Hugill) here. She speaks of her work to promote American composers in the UK, and also of her championing of Ethel Smyth, with a brief note about The Wreckers, and the difficulty of sourcing the score for it.

We’re fundraising for another of Ethel Smyth’s operas, Fête Galante. The left hand panel is the place to click on to find out more!

Please go here for the latest Retrospect News.