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Tour Director
Practical Information

  • Attend five operatic performances at Wexford’s stunning National Opera House, including two shorter works, innovatively produced and staged

  • Highlights include Dvořák’s Armida, Fromental Halévy’s La Tempesta and Félicien David’s Lalla-Roukh

  • Enjoy one of the festival’s celebrated lunchtime recitals, its surprise programme unveiled on the day

“I have been to the Wexford Festival before and always enjoyed it, but this ACE tour was especially wonderful… It will be long remembered with pleasure”

– ACE customer on a previous Wexford Opera Festival tour

Nestling amidst the medieval streets of old Wexford, Ireland’s most impressive music venue – the National Opera House – celebrates a superb annual festival of opera with an impressive range of music and performers.


Since the first annual festival of music and the arts took place in 1951, Wexford Opera Festival has grown into one of the leading operatic events of the year and draws audiences from all over the world to enjoy often-neglected works and forgotten masterpieces. The festival is particularly well known for introducing up-and-coming stars, conductors and directors, and is a wonderful opportunity to discover music and productions that offer something very different from other opera events.


Wexford’s diverse musical offerings form the heart of our tour, and we are particularly delighted to be taking in no fewer than six performances this year. The three main works - Dvořák’s final opera Armida, Fromental Halévy’s Shakesperean adaptation La Tempesta, with a libretto by Eugène Scribe, and Félicien David’s ‘dreamy’ Lalla-Roukh, based on Thomas Moore’s poem – will sit alongside two shorter works, Alfred Cellier's The Spectre Knight and Alberto Caruso’s The Master, the latter featuring a libretto by Colm Tóibín. The casts include some of the most talented international singers performing today, from critically acclaimed Israeli soprano Hila Baggio and American tenor Andrew Morstein (La Tempesta), to Mexican soprano Karen Gardeazabal (Lalla-Roukh) and Irish soprano Jennifer Davis (Armida).


Each opera will be introduced in lively and engaging style by our Tour Director during dedicated morning lectures. Supplementing the key works will be one of the festival’s famous lunchtime recitals, always popular with festival audiences, to whom the eagerly anticipated programme is revealed on the day itself.


In addition to the musical events, we will take in some of Ireland’s historical and architectural treasures during a day excursion to Waterford: historically an important trading route between England, Ireland and France at the mouth of the River Suir, its streets are now home to an array of 18th century buildings. We are particularly delighted that former longstanding ACE Tour Director and architectural historian John Redmill will join us for this visit.


We also hope to visit the fascinating Huntington Castle and Gardens in Clonegal, built in the 17th century as a ‘plantation castle’ and later captured by Oliver Cromwell, subject to flight arrangements on our final day.


We will stay throughout at the four star Clayton Whites Hotel, a stylish and comfortable establishment located in the heart of Wexford, a five minute walk from the National Opera House.


Tour Director Donald Maxwell is an operatic baritone, director and lecturer. Donald performs with opera companies worldwide, including the Metropolitan Opera in New York, where he is featuring in La Bohème in 2022. He regularly leads ACE’s International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival tour and is particularly pleased to be returning to Wexford Opera Festival in 2022.


We are pleased that Donald will be joined by guest guide and former ACE Tour Director John Redmill, DipArch, FRIAI, for our daytime excursion to Waterford. John Redmill is an English architect who has worked and advised on many important historical buildings throughout Ireland. He is the Honorary Vice Presidency of the Irish Georgian Society and a Board Member of the Irish Architectural Archive.

Tour Code

Included: return airfare, accommodation based on sharing a twin or double bedded room, performances as described, breakfast, dinner with water & coffee, excursions & admissions, gratuities.

Not Included: travel insurance, double room for single use supplement £180.

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