The Norfolk Schools Opera Project was established in 1997. In the past 21 years we have worked with over 3,300 children and 350 teachers from 123 Norfolk schools.

The Norfolk Schools Opera Project aims to engage Key Stage 2 children in creative and cultural learning through the medium of opera, in order to foster a long-term relationship with the arts, enhance their school attainment, and develop their aspirations.

In 2018-19 Norwich Theatre Royal and Norfolk Music Hub are collaborating in a year-long programme, working with hundreds of pupils, teachers, and young gifted and talented musicians from across Norfolk. Schools and families launched this exciting project at an Opera Celebration Day on 4 November 2018. Through creative workshops and CPD, a brand new children’s version of Mozart’s The Magic Flute will be created and performed on 23 June 2019.

A Kind of Magic Flute is a brand-new children’s opera fusing Mozart’s Magic Flute with a little twist of Latin-American Salsa music. The score weaves together extracts from Mozart’s original opera, arrangements and adaptations of some of the opera’s most famous melodies and sections in which fragments and motifs from the original score are woven into entirely new music.


We have recruited school groups to take part in this year-long project as well as others to be involved as audience schools, who will all come together to tell this fantastical story of magic, conflict and the power of love.

There will be activity and resources for pupils and staff. The project is delivered through a combined programme, working with teachers and professional artists, including English Touring Opera, Glyndebourne Opera, and The Come and Sing Company.

For further information, please contact Gillian Shaw at Norfolk Music Service:

For venue access information, please visit our Accessibility page.

If your school is taking part in NSOP 2019, click on this link to access the resources page:

Young Musicians

Accompanying the choir of children will be an orchestra made up of gifted and talented young musicians from Norfolk Music Service ensembles, including the Norfolk County Symphonic Wind Band and Norfolk County Strings.

These young musicians will work alongside professionals and will contribute to the resources for schools by recording the score.

Music Education Hubs / Arts Organisations

We are inviting external Music Education Hubs and Arts Organisations to engage with the project development throughout the year. You will be able to take a glimpse into the entire process, from school recruitment to final performance, and receive a discounted rate on the final project resources to then be able to perform your own version of this brand new children’s opera!
Please contact Gillian Shaw for more details:

Music for Youth Proms

We are also delighted that, following our application, Music for Youth has invited Norfolk Music Hub and Norwich Theatre Royal to put together a Massed Ensemble Performance of A Kind of Magic Flute in the 2019 Music for Youth Proms at the Royal Albert Hall in London! Read more >>

Help us get A Kind of Magic Flute to London! A donation of £5 will pay for one child to travel to the Royal Albert Hall, a donation of £150 will pay for a whole class to travel. Donate at our JustGiving page:


© Jonny Gee
In a land filled with the magic of song, dance, music and art (and the tweets of thousands of colourful birds), the music of The Magic Flute is the most powerful magic of all.

Following the death of the old king, his wife the Queen of the Night has lost her mind: she is temporarily mad with grief and so the Circle of the Sun is being ruled by Sarastro The Sorcerer.

Sarastro has taken the Queen’s daughter, Princess Pamina, to the Temple of the Circle of the Sun, where she is feeling trapped.

In her madness, fury and grief, the Queen wishes Sarastro dead and tells everyone she meets that he should be killed. This includes young Prince Tamino (who seems an unlikely hero, having run away from a giant snake, only to be saved by the eminent ornithologist – and expert tree-climber – Papegeno, the Birdwatcher).

The Queen gives Papageno a Magic Flute and sends him off with Prince Tamino to rescue the distraught Princess Pamina from the Temple of the Circle of the Sun.

Outside the Temple, young Prince Tamino meets a humble doorman sitting on a large stone. The old man, philosophising on the stone, turns out to be a much wider and less humble than he first appears…

SPOILER ALERT: Inside the Temple, Tamino meets and falls in love with Pamina, who is subsequently freed from her pit of darkness. And Papageno the Birdwatcher meets and falls in love with Papagena the Artist-in-Residence, united through their shared love of birds.

The Circle of the Sun sets four great challenges to test Tamino and Pamina: Earth, Air, Fire and Water. If they succeed – by demonstrating Truth, Humility, Courage and Love – Pamina and Tamino will together ascend to the throne.

Do Pamina and Tamino complete the challenges?
Do they inherit the leadership of the Circle of the Sun?

Let’s find out… with A Magic Kind of Flute!