The Performance Ensemble’s Sinfonia: at The Courtyard Theatre on 26 & 27 April

Sinfonia – a celebrated cross-artform show filled with original stories from the lives of older people – returns to Leeds Playhouse this month.

A dynamic group of artists and performers, all aged 60+, are bringing a new version of their celebrated show Sinfonia to the Courtyard Theatre at Leeds Playhouse from 26-27 April.

Peter Bartram and Rowena Godfrey as part of 1001 Stories

The Performance Ensemble, a Leeds-based theatre company that recently became an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation (NPO), originally developed the show as part of 1001 Stories, a ground-breaking festival that celebrated age and ageing at the Playhouse as part of LEEDS 2023, the Year of Culture. 

Directed by Alan Lyddiard with original music by Nikola Kodjabashia, choreography by Tamara McLorg and designed by Michael Vale based on an original design by Neil Murray, the 2024 production features new stories and performers in a more intimate show that will be performed in Leeds – and in Doncaster and Barrow in the coming months.

Local performers will be sharing tales of activism and politics, love and family in their home City, exploring themes that resonate with all ages, told by the generation that pioneered punk, fronted marches and invented the internet. 

Sally Owen in Sinfonia as part of 1001 Stories.

Alan Lyddiard, Artistic Director of The Performance Ensemble and director of Sinfonia: “We’ve been creating high quality performances with people over 60 for years now, giving a voice to generations that have been forgotten or deemed irrelevant. These people have full lives and experiences worth sharing and we are revealing and celebrating them in new, beautiful and emotive ways.”

Being an NPO means The Performance Ensemble benefits from national funding and ensures that everyone has access to the transformative benefits of creativity and culture.

Sinfonia Company as part of 1001 Stories

Alan continued: “We want to deliver the message that life doesn’t stop as you get older; that you have so much more to give. In becoming an NPO, we have been able to offer 12 new roles in the company to those usually closer to considering retirement; each individual bringing a lifetime of expertise and enthusiasm.” 

The Performance Ensemble presents SINFONIA
Courtyard theatre, Leeds Playhouse 26-27 April
Age 11+
Box office 0113 213 7700
Book online

All photography by David Lindsay. Main image: Pat White and the Company as part of 1001 Stories

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