Oliver Knight

Should you find yourself with your nose to the grindstone, your shoulder to the wheel, putting your best foot forward with your head duly bowed. Then you are either playing the harshest game of twister known to man, or a slave in Giulio Cesare.

In my case, this time at least, it’s the latter.

Not being one usually known for his world class voice, I never dreamed I would ever actually be in an opera. I have been fascinated and enthralled by it ever since I was taken as a child to see The Magic Flute, and I am an actor, but this is something new, and rather special to me.

The supernumerary role can be many things. Often it’s all standing about guarding doors, or milling about in the background, filling the space where the principals are not. Though there is some of that, this is much more fun.
For one thing the five of us do have to manually rotate the truck (a rotating stage) in true slave fashion. However, Tim [Albery, the director] also has the faith in us to really involve us in much of the action, which is just great.

The real bonus though, is just being there when the principals sing. Opera from three feet away is an experience I shall keep with me always. As indeed is being, albeit briefly, part of the Opera North family. An incredibly welcoming and generous company that have taken us into their world.

Cannot wait for tomorrow, to see what they throw at us next. I am loving every minute, will keep you posted.

Oliver Knight

Giulio Cesare opens at Leeds Grand Theatre on Saturday 14 January, before touring to Nottingham, Newcastle, Salford and Dublin. For more information about this production, click here.