The Weekend Creative Team

Original play: Sir Michael Palin

The Weekend started its life as a play which was published in 1994, and premiered in the same year at the Strand Theatre in the West End, starring Richard Wilson in the role of Stephen Febble.  It was later broadcast on Radio 4 with Michael Palin himself playing Stephen.  The Weekend was Sir Michael's first stage play and is described as taking a look at family values with dark humour. 


The story in brief......'Faced with a family gathering, world-weary Stephen Febble does his best to be difficult.  When his daughter, her dreary husband Alan, their precocious child and - not least - the dog come to stay for the weekend, it's enough to make him reach for the whisky, and for the sarcasm.  The climax arrives on Saturday night when his patient wife, Virginia, has a party and the chiropodist comes too' (Bloomsbury).

Music : Scott Stroman

Scott Stroman is a musician of unique breadth. US-born but long based in London, he is a composer, conductor and performer and director of Eclectic Voices and the London Jazz Orchestra. He conducts baroque to contemporary music with orchestras, choirs, and opera in the UK and Europe and directed the LPO's innovative cross-genre Renga and Hit Squad ensembles. In jazz and world music has worked with artists including Youssou N’Dour, Goran Bregovich, Phil Collins, Billy Cobham, Dizzy Gillespie, Kenny Wheeler, Dave Liebman and Rufus Reid.


A noted educator, he developed the Guildhall School's world-class jazz programme, and has conducted youth orchestras, choirs, and jazz ensembles throughout the UK. He directed the Northern Sinfonia's Young Sinfonia and the LPO's Youth Orchestra and Future First ensemble, and has led numerous workshops and cross-genre projects with orchestras, opera companies and education authorities in the UK and abroad.


The Weekend is Scott Stroman's fourth work for Highbury Opera Theatre, following a musical version of Shakespeare's As You Like It and collaborations with Tamsin Collison on the youth theatre piece Fables and Nick Hornby's Fever Pitch.

Libretto: Tamsin Collison

Tamsin Collison is a writer, director and singer. As a writer she has collaborated with composers including Orlando Gough (For the Public Good, Stand, and Open Port), John Webb (Lionhunt, The Ballad of Slippery Jack, Cat-Astrophe), Evangelia Rigaki (Professional Suicide), David Knotts (Mister Purcell – His Ground), Peter Latenka (Songs of the Marsh), Kerry Andrew (Dart’s Love), Sxip Shirey (What Dreams May Come), Scott Stroman (Fables and Fever Pitch), Rebecca Dale (Winter), and Cheryl Frances-Hoad (Love Bytes and Last Man Standing), as well as jazz singer Gabrielle Ducomble’s albums Notes from Paris and Across the Bridge.

She directs and lectures at LAMDA and RADA in Audio and Classical Theatre, and has directed over 400 audiobooks, most recently All The Sonnets of Shakespeare with Sir Kenneth Branagh and Lolita Chakrabarti.

Director : John Ramster


John Ramster is a Suffolk-born award-winning director, educator and writer. He learned his operatic trade with the Glyndebourne Festival and Tour.


A renowned educator and director of young singers, he is currently Associate Head of the Vocal Department at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.


Recent productions include Eugene Onegin (West Green Festival), Beginnings (Guildhall School), Le nozze di Figaro (Icelandic National Opera), Der fliegende Holländer, Carmen, The Paper Bag Princess (Bergen National Opera), Don Giovanni, Agrippina (Royal Conservatoire of Scotland),  Theodora (Royal Northern College of Music), Radamisto (GSMD); Le nozze di Figaro, Die Zauberflöte (Turku Festival, Finland), Lucia di Lammermoor (Belgrade National Opera award for Best Direction), and Don Giovanni, L'elisir d'amore (Opera Faber, Portugal). His acclaimed staged Messiah for Merry Opera has received over 100 performances over its 11-year run.


Johns novel LadiesMan has been translated into seven languages. He is currently writing a book on acting for opera singers, and may one day finish an historical murder-mystery set in Handel's London called Da Capo.


Future plans include Don Giovanni with Kristiansand Opera in Norway and Albert Herring. This is his first production for Highbury Opera Theatre



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