• Saturday JUNE 30 7:30 PM
  • Sunday JULY 8 2:00 PM
  • Tuesday JULY 10 7:30 PM
  • Friday JULY 13 7:30 PM


Flight is an opera bustling with the endless possibilities of air travel. Inspired by the true story of a refugee stranded for 18 years in the Charles de Gaulle airport, eight strangers find themselves stuck overnight together in an airport due to a sudden and severe electrical storm. Whether seeking to rekindle a marriage on the rocks, start a new career or pursue a holiday romance, Flight's characters remind us of our constant human need to recreate ourselves and our relationships.

Jonathan Dove’s inventive score and dramatist April de Angelis’ deeply human libretto create an original modern-day operatic comedy and a breakthrough theatrical experience.

Jonathan Dove

April de Angelis

24 September 1998
Glyndebourne Opera

English (with English supertitles)


Licensed by arrangement with C.F. Peters Corporation, New York




John Holiday Refugee View Website
Audrey Luna Controller View Website
Zulimar López-Hernández Tina View Website
Andrew Bidlack Bill View Website
Theo Hoffman Steward View Website
Sofia Selowsky Stewardess View Website
Elise Quagliata Minskwoman View Website
Norman Garrett Minskman View Website
Deanne Meek Older Woman View Website
Zachary James Immigration Officer View Website
David Neely Conductor View Website
Kristine McIntyre Director View Website
R. Keith Brumley Scenic Designer
Barry Steele Lighting Designer View Website
Jonathan Knipscher Costume Designer View Website
Brittany Crinson Makeup and Hair Designer


Act 1

Dawn. The Controller arrives. She is content: the airport is empty - except for the Refugee: he has nowhere to go. Travelers start to arrive. A married couple, Bill and Tina, are going on holiday in an attempt to rediscover romance. The Older Woman is waiting for a young man she met in Mallorca, her fiancé. The Steward and Stewardess go brightly about their business. Another married couple arrives, late for their flight: they are moving to Minsk. The Minskwoman is heavily pregnant. At the last moment, she refuses to board the plane and her husband leaves without her. She is left stranded, mortified. The Refugee offers her a magic stone to comfort her.

The Immigration Officer passes through the concourse: he is always a danger to the undocumented Refugee. The latter, warned by the Controller but shunned by all of the passengers, avoids notice. Refusing to assist the Refugee, the travelers are joyously preparing for their respective departures when the Controller announces all flights are indefinitely delayed due to a sudden electrical storm.

Act Two

Night. Hours have passed and the storm is now raging. Worries beset those who are waiting. The strom has even upset the Controller's equilibrium - she ventures outside the airport to confront the weather. The Minskwoman reckons with the fact that her suitcase is now filled with an unknown child's belongings. Everyone on the concourse tries fitfully to rest but, in pairs or alone, they secretly approach the Refugee, fascinated by his "magic stone." He gives each of them what they believe to be the one, unique stone. They make wishes. Bill is still restless and, in an attempt to break out of his predicatable nature, seeks the Stewardess. In the dark he makes a mistake and finds the Steward instead: they go off to explore the control tower. The women decide to get drunk and toast the Refugee. As they become more garrulous, they discover that each has "the stone." They vent their anger, with dire consequences for the Refugee as Bill and the Steward's explorations prove less dire but no less cataclysmic. The storm builds...

Act Three

Dawn. The weather has cleared. The Minskman suddenly returns on the first flight back, unable to continue without his wife at his side. Bill and the Steward have a surprise for their partners. Tina has a very nasty surprise for Bill. The Refugee has a surprise for the women. The Minskwoman has a surprise for everyone.

The Immigration Officer finally catches the Refugee. The other characters offer their help to persuade the Immigration Officer to review the situation, though all attempts are unsuccessful. The Refugee explains why he has no documentation and after all have heard his story, even the Officer has a surprising reaction. Flights are called and people depart. The Controller appears in the departure lounge as the airport returns to normal...perhaps...

The Music

“It can be summed up in one word: charm. Dove writes music that is tuneful, tonal and tangy. And it is sensationally orchestrated. In short, it’s instantly beguiling.”

-Richard Morrison, The Times


Flight is that rarest thing, a popular new comic opera… Dove’s music flies, the opera is fun, and people are going to love it.”

-Tom Sutcliffe, The Evening Standard