our 100th Gala Performance: Handel's Clori, Tirsi and Fileno
performed by Bampton Classical Opera

Saturday 24 September 2022 from 3:00 pm

Bampton Classical Opera

a staging of Handel's dramatic cantata Clori, Tirsi and Fileno
an Arcadian pastoral comedy

It’s hard to imagine the rotund and bewigged George Frideric Handel, familiar from oil portraits and plaster busts, instead as an ardent young man in his early twenties, footloose and fancy in Italy.  Here in Rome, at the age of 22, he composed one of his enduring masterpieces, the magnificent choral setting Dixit Dominus, and followed it up with the wonderfully fresh and inventive cantata Clori, Tirsi e Fileno.  It is nothing less than a comic opera in miniature for just three characters – Clori, lovely but fickle, strings along two adoring shepherds, Tirsi and Fileno.  She really doesn’t know which way to turn!  Promises are made, hearts are broken – until in the end the disillusioned youths decide that enough is enough.  With luminous and sensuous orchestration and showing off the very best of the young composer’s thrilling vocal writing, this is a gem of a work.  Bampton Classical Opera, “Britain’s unchallenged champion of eighteenth-century opera" (Opera Now), is delighted to stage this pastoral tale of capricious passion in the appropriately al fresco setting of the garden at Breinton.  Julian Perkins, an acclaimed Handel specialist, conducts a period instrument ensemble and three exceptional young singers.  

  • Clori - Samantha Louis-Jean
  • Tirsi - Caroline Taylor
  • Fileno - Emma Stannard

Accompanied by the Bampton Classical Players on period instruments.

   Buy Tickets

Tickets are £35 each for adults and free for children. 
Bampton Classical Opera

Bampton Classical Opera was founded in 1993 by its artistic directors, Gilly French and Jeremy Gray.  Their well-established national reputation is founded on a policy of breathing new life into little-known works of the classical period, in lively and accessible productions of exceptional musical standards, with some of the best of the country’s young singers.  The staged operas are always sung in English, often in their own lively new translations.

"Britain’s unchallenged champion of 18th-century opera.  Witty, smart, fast-moving and admirably spiritedly sung by a vocally-satisfying cast, a laudably intelligent, sharp-witted team who were both vocally polished and dramatically rewarding" – Opera Now

"giddily exciting, propelled by wit, charm, and bags of joy" – The Spectator

"This delightful evening… conducted with panache, and a young cast was vigorous and fresh throughout" – The Daily Telegraph

"As delightful and diversely entertaining as eighteenth-century opera, in its more modest guise, was always intended to be" – Times Literary Supplement

"The epitome of opera in a garden" – The Times

"Beautifully sung and superbly acted, moving, funny and vivacious" – Audience member


  • This event will be outdoors with free seating on the lawn
  • You may sit anywhere in the garden on your own chair/rug or you may borrow one of ours
  • Picnics are welcome for consumption before, during or after the performance
  • Gates will open from 3 pm
  • 100 Gala Reception, with a glass of bubbly, from 3:30 pm
  • Main performance at 4 pm.


  • Clori, Tirsi and Fileno will be performed in one act without an interval
  • The performance will last approximately 75 minutes
  • The opera will be in English and suitable for all ages.


  • Tickets are £35 each
  • Prices include a free drink at our 100 Gala Reception
  • Free admittance for school children
  • Please purchase tickets in advance from this website.


  • Guests are encouraged to travel by foot, by bicycle, or to share rides
  • On-site parking may be reserved at the time of booking
  • No additional space will be available without a booking
  • There is no on-street parking available.
Samantha Louis-Jean

Samantha Louis-Jean received her vocal training at the Maîtrise de Radio-France, the University of Montreal and with Janice Chapman in London. She has performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, the Dijon Opera, Lille Opera, Luxembourg Opera, Montpellier Opera, Quebec Opera, the Aix-en-Provence Festival, Montreal Baroque Festival, the Folles Journées de Nantes; and collaborated with conductors such as Jean-Claude Malgoire, Emmanuelle Haïm and Christophe Rousset.

Samantha is a winner of the Froville International Baroque Competition, the Prix d’Europe Competition, the Lyndon-Woodside Oratorio Society of New York Competition and the Jacqueline Desmarais Foundation. She is a grant recipient of the Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec, the Canada Council of the Arts, the Jeunesses Musicales du Canada and the Père-Lindsay Foundation. Her most recent projects include Mélisande in "Ariane et Barbe-Bleue" by Lucas at the Opéra de Lorraine and Pauline in "Silvain" by Gretry with Opera Lafayette in New York and Washington DC.

Full biography

Samantha Louis-Jean

Emma Stannard trained at the Royal Northern College of Music and with Royal Academy Opera.  This summer, Emma has performed the role of Olga Eugene Onegin (Opera Holland Park) and has sung as the alto soloist in the Mozart Requiem (Really Big Chorus).

Further operatic experience includes Idamante Idomeneo and Enrico Elisabetta (English Touring Opera); Flora La traviata (Opera Holland Park YAP); Minerva Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria and Pepa Goyescas (The Grange Festival); Mother Amahl and the Night Visitors (Bampton Classical Opera) and Selene Berenice (La Nuova Musica).

Emma has won the Bampton Classical Opera Competition, the Elizabeth Harwood Memorial Award and was awarded the Audrey Strange Memorial Award at the final of the Royal Overseas League vocal competition. She was also a 2018/19 Handel House Talent Scheme Young Artist.

Full biography

Caroline Taylor, Tirisi

Caroline Taylor graduated with Distinction from the Royal Northern College of Music. She won the 2021 Emmy Destinn Young Singers Award, the 2019 Dean and Chadlington Singing Competition and the 2018 Joyce and Michael Kennedy Strauss Award.

A former Longborough Festival Opera Emerging Artist, Caroline’s opera credits include Kate and cover Elsie Maynard/The Yeomen of the Guard (Grange Festival), Asteria/Tamerlano (Cambridge Handel Opera Company), Adina/The Elixir of Love (Duchy Opera), Chocholka and cover Vixen Sharp-Ears/The Cunning Little Vixen (Longborough) and Governess/The Turn of the Screw (Byre Opera). Concert highlights include Fauré’s Requiem (Manchester Camerata) and Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 at the Bridgewater Hall. This season, Caroline is a Young Artist with Oxford Lieder. She makes her debut at the Wigmore Hall as part of the French Song Exchange and performs the title role in Příhody lišky Bystroušky with Hampstead Garden Opera. 

Full biography

Samantha Louis-JeanJulian Perkins, conductor

Julian Perkins is Artistic Director of Cambridge Handel Opera and Sounds Baroque. He has performed regularly at the Salzburg Festival, Edinburgh International Festival and BBC Proms, directed the Academy of Ancient Music and featured as soloist in concertos with the Royal Northern Sinfonia, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, The Sixteen and Florilegium.

He has conducted staged opera productions for the Buxton International Festival, Cambridge Handel Opera, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, Kings Place, Netherlands Opera Academy, New Chamber Opera, New Kent Opera and Snape Maltings, appeared as solo harpsichordist at the Royal Opera House and Welsh National Opera, and performed as a soloist at London’s Wigmore Hall, New York’s Lincoln Center and Sydney Opera House. Shortlisted for the 2021 Gramophone Award for his recording of Eccles’ Semele, Julian's conducting and playing has been praised for its 'demonic intensity' (BBC Music Magazine – Recording of the Month), 'fluid and natural pacing' (Gramophone – Editor's Choice) and 'verve and suavity' (Classical Music).

Full biography