Wexford Festival Opera photo by Patrick Redmond
Wexford Festival Opera photo by Patrick Redmond

Music and Art

Wexford - The Opera Festival

If it were not for Compton Mackenzie, many an operatic masterpiece may have been forgotten. The writer, raconteur and commentator came up with the idea for the Wexford Opera Festival back in 1951, but wasn’t satisfied with it being just another opera event. From that first outing over 65 years ago to the present day, the Wexford Festival has operated on the same ideal - introducing audiences to neglected and unjustly overlooked works.

Opera is no longer an escape for the elite only. So, join us in Wexford to discover operatic treasures within a wonderful ancient Viking town, nestled on the banks of the River Slaney. Here, we meet the chairman of the festival, we are treated to a private tour of the city along with Selskar Abbey, and we get to attend impressive performances. There will also be the opportunity to take part in a workshop led by local Irish musicians. This tour offers a unique and exciting immersion into opera.

What's included?

  •  Flights
  •  Local transport
  •  Meals - as per the itinerary
  •  Accommodation
  •  Expert guide
  •  Professional tour manager

Led by...

Barnaby Rayfield

Barnaby Rayfield

Barnaby Rayfield was born in Hampshire and studied German at Bristol University, along with subsidiary courses in theatre and European cinema.

Today's Price

Deposit: £500 Single supplement: £290

Tour highlights:

  • A rousing Irish dancing and music workshop with local Irish musicians, who are completely dedicating to promoting and preserving the musical heritage of beautiful Ireland
  • A private reception at the beautiful opera house
  • An excursion to the oldest working lighthouse on the dramatic coastal area of Hook
  • Join the Wexford Historical Society for a special guided walking tour of the town, during which we learn about the significance of its Viking-built harbour and other buildings

Tour details

Dates 23 October 2019 - 27 October 2019
Duration 5 days
Today's Price
Deposit: £500 Single supplement: £290 Balance due by 31 July 2019
Tour code ZOW19A

Book Now or call 01453 823328 if you have any questions

23 October 2019: Itinerary

Fly to Dublin from London Heathrow this morning. Upon arrival, we drive to White’s Hotel in Wexford and stop for lunch en route. After checking in, we dine at a local restaurant as a group.

Meals include: Dinner

Hotel: Clayton Whites, Wexford

In the morning, we meet a member of the Wexford Historical Society, who leads us on a guided walk around the town. We learn about the significance of Wexford’s Viking-built harbour and visit the now-derelict Selskar Abbey. Later, we enjoy a lunchtime recital amidst the superb acoustics and Georgian interiors of St. Iberius Church, before a talk on tonight’s opera and a private reception at the National Opera House. After dinner in the Opera House, we attend our first performance of the tour.

Performance: La Cucina by Irish composer Andrew Synnott (WORLD-PREMIERE) together with Adina by Gioacchino Rossini

All meals included

Hotel: Clayton Whites, Wexford

Today we meet the Wexford Comhaltas, a group devoted to the promotion and preservation of Ireland’s musical culture. Later, we attend a talk and enjoy our second live performance of the holiday.

Performance: Don Quichotte by Jules Massenet

All meals included

Hotel: Clayton Whites, Wexford

We begin at Hook Lighthouse, established 800 years ago and now considered one of the oldest in the world. A chance to climb to the top of its tower rewards us with views across the water. We take an early lunch before returning to Wexford for a free afternoon. Dinner and a talk on tonight’s opera is followed by our final performance.

Performance: Dorilla in Tempe by Antonio Vivaldi

All meals included

We make our way to the Wicklow Mountains National Park. After Sunday lunch, we make our way home from Dublin Airport.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Clayton Whites, Wexford

23 October 2019: Additional Info

23 October 2019: Accommodation

Clayton Whites is a 4* Hotel in the heart of Wexford town, close to bus and train station. The hotel boasts 160 luxury bedrooms, a tranquility spa, bars and restaurants and a leisure centre.

23 October 2019: Enquiries

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