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Sherlock Holmes

‘The game’s afoot’ as we start work on a new operatic adaptation of the Sherlock Holmes stories.

Based on one of Conan Doyle’s most popular Sherlock stories - The Sign of Four - this new opera will find innovative ways to bring the mystery and excitement of the world’s most famous detective to life.

Created by Scottish composer and librettist Lliam Paterson (Scottish Opera, the Barbican), we've so far carried out one R&D process ahead of full production in 2024.


Our long term ambition is to tour the finished piece to theatres in towns and cities across the North of England where there is little access to live opera.

Supported by the Fidelio Trust, Marchus Trust, Radcliffe Trust, RVW Trust, Harold Hyam Wingate Foundation

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The Story

Every year Mary Morstan receives a beautiful and valuable pearl in the post from a mysterious benefactor.

This year, however, the stranger wants to meet her and reveal a dark secret about the pearl's origin and her father's disappearance ...

An action packed story of love, betrayal and a boat chase across the Thames, the story will make a thrilling and unique opera.

Sherlock Holmes no text.jpeg
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Research and Development

In April 2022 we worked with the East Riding Theatre in Beverley on an R&D week for the opera.

We explored four different scenes from the opera, and performed these extracts in front of a live audience for the first time.

We are now continuing to develop the opera based on this process for full production in 2023.

Get in touch if you're interested in supporting the project - including if you would be interested in programming the opera next year.

Creative Team


Lliam Paterson

    Composer and librettist


    David Ward


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    Lliam Paterson

    Lliam Paterson is an award-winning Scottish opera and classical composer. Lliam’s opera ‘The 8th Door’ was commissioned by Scottish Opera with performances at the Theatre Royal Glasgow and Edinburgh Festival Theatre in 2017. ‘BambinO’ (pictured) an opera for babies aged 6 to 18 months, was co-commissioned by Scottish Opera, Improbable and the Manchester International Festival. Additional performances included a tour of Paris in collaboration with the Théâtre du Châtalet and performances at The Metropolitan Opera, New York. Recent work includes ‘The Angel Esmerelda’ (February 2020) for the Barbican and Guildhall.

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