The Original Chinese Conjuror

23 August 2018, 7.30pm

24 August, 7.30pm

25 August, 2.30pm

Music by Raymond Yiu

Libretto by Lee Warren

William Robinson is a struggling magician at the start of the 20th century, propped up by his ever loving wife, Dot, and paling under the shadow of the greatest magician of the time, ‘Herrmann the Great’.

His fortunes drastically change, however, when William discovers that all his act needs is another element of illusion - the adoption of the persona of ‘The Original Chinese Conjuror’ …

Raymond Yiu’s hilarious and poignant opera premiered at Aldeburgh in 2006, before transferring to London’s Almeida Theatre.

The Left Bank Opera Fesitval 2018 is supported by Arts Council England, [email protected], the Emerald Foundation, the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, and the Sir George Martin Trust.

Praise for the production

4* The Guardian (Andrew Clements): "The strange case of magician Chung Ling Soo’s fatal encounter with a bullet is told with verve is this revival of Raymond Yiu’s music theatre gem [...] [The opera's] outstanding qualities – economical, unfussy drama combined with a wryly witty text and a score that careers happily from Broadway musical to 1960s expressionism via tango and Edwardian vaudeville – have stayed as fresh as ever. It’s a tautly choreographed show, conducted with real punch by Lewis Gaston." (26 August 2018)

Production photographs (credit Pelly & Me Photography)

Ticket information

£20 adults / £15 under-30 / £10 under-18 and full-time students

Part of the 2018 Left Bank Opera Festival

Pre-show events

Thursday 23 August, 6.30pm, FREE

In Discussion: Raymond Yiu and Lee Warren

Friday 24 August, 6.30pm, FREE

The Culture Games: West meets East

See also

24 & 25 August, £10/£7

The Yellow Princess

Sunday 26 August, 2.30pm, £10/£7


Raymond Yiu on The Original Chinese Conjuror

Who was Chung Ling Soo?

Rosemary Clifford


Alex Haigh

Many roles

Louis Hurst

William Robinson

Keith Pun

Chai Ping

Andrew Tipple

Alexander Herrmann

Raymond Yiu


Lee Warren


Lewis Gaston


David Ward


Louise Garner


George Leigh


Sophia Watts

Graphic designer


Accordion | Milos Milivojevic

Clarinet | Antonio Perez-Barrera

Double Bass | Anita Santinelli

Keyboard | Jill Fogden

Percussion | Aidan Marsden

Violin | Elizabeth Lister