A classical opera, Orpheus which was re-imagined reaching new diverse audiences was named Best Stage Production at the 2023 Asian Media Awards.
The stars of radio, TV and broadcasting gathered at the 11th AMA ceremony at the Hilton Manchester Deansgate.
The awards, which are supported by the University of Salford, celebrated winners in a range of categories in journalism, stage, online and creative media and were hosted by Magic FM’s Neev Spencer.
Those honoured on the night included broadcaster Tina Daheley, LBC presenter Sangita Myska and Mihir Bose who received the Outstanding Contribution to Media Award.
Orpheus from Opera North was a groundbreaking performance of Monteverdi’s opera and opened at the Leeds Grand Theatre, then toured to The Lowry Salford Quays, Theatre Royal Nottingham and Theatre Royal Newcastle, as well as being filmed in full and made available to stream online on the OperaVision platform.
It skilfully brought together western and Indian classical music in a reimagining of one of the earliest surviving operas, Monteverdi’s 1607 work L’Orfeo.
The opera was sung in Italian and Urdu, with additional sections sung in Hindi, Tamil, Malayalam, Punjabi and Bengali, and was subtitled in English at all performances. The cast included performers trained in western and Indian classical traditions.
Speaking on the day Dominic Gray from Opera North said: “It is based on a long long relationship Opera North has had with South Asian Arts in Leeds.
“We could not have anticipated that we could have got something so beautiful and so sensitively put together so we are thrilled to bits for winning this.”
“Nationally, there has been an amazing response from the audience.”
Jasdeep Singh Degun said: “We have had five stars in The Guardian and in the Times and The Telegraph. And then the audience demographic and getting Asian people to come and see an opera is not something that happens all the time.”
“We are very passionate about showcasing classical music in a light that is different but also being very pure to classical music and the musicians who make it.
“All the musicians were also British based so we didn’t fly musicians over from India. It was British Asian talent.”
Music by Claudio Monteverdi & Jasdeep Singh Degun; Musical Arrangements by Ashok Gupta; Original Italian Text by Alessandro Striggio; Translations by Ustad Dharambir Singh MBE & Shahbaz Hussain
This year’s Asian Media Awards winners were announced at the Hilton Manchester Deansgate on Friday October 27.
Previous recipients of an Asian Media Award include Krishnan Guru-Murthy, Waris Hussein, Art Malik, Mehdi Hasan, Nina Wadia, Anita Rani, Shobna Gulati, Faisal Islam, Adil Ray & Lisa Aziz.
The University of Salford are Premier Partners to the Asian Media Awards.
Partners to the awards include ITV, EssenceMediaCom, Reach PLC & Women In Journalism.
The awards are also supported by Manchester Metropolitan University, AMT Lawyers, DKR Accountants, Opus Broadband, Hilton Manchester Deansgate, Fritz AV, Payal Events & Cleartwo.