Press Release


The Grammy-winning Boston Early Music Festival Chamber Opera Series presents a rollicking 1737 masterpiece—John Frederick Lampe’s The Dragon of Wantley—on Thanksgiving weekend in Boston with additional performances in Miami and Troy, NY


Cambridge, MA – The GRAMMY Award-winning Boston Early Music Festival Chamber Opera Series returns on Thanksgiving weekend with an all-new production that’s Monty Python meets Handel with John Frederick Lampe’s 1737 opera The Dragon of Wantley. A fire-breathing dragon is terrorizing the Yorkshire countryside and only the local squire, Moore of Moore Hall, can save the day. If only he can be bothered to put down his beer. The production will be performed twice in Boston on Saturday, November 25, and Sunday, November 26 before going on tour to Miami on Thursday, November 30, presented by RK Cultural Productions, and Troy, NY on Saturday, December 2 at the historic Troy Savings Bank Music Hall. A virtual presentation will follow, available to watch from Saturday, December 9 through Saturday, December 23.

This all-new production is led by BEMF’s GRAMMY-winning Musical Directors Paul O’Dette and Stephen Stubbs and internationally acclaimed Stage Director Gilbert Blin. The stellar cast includes GRAMMY nominee Teresa Wakim as Margery, Hannah De Priest as Mauxalinda, GRAMMY winner Aaron Sheehan as Moore, John Taylor Ward as The Dragon, and Douglas Williams as Gubbins alongside the all-star BEMF Chamber Ensemble with Concertmaster Robert Mealy and the BEMF Dance Company and Choreographer Melinda Sullivan. Rounding out the directorial team for this must-see operatic event are Costume Designer Seth Bodie, Lighting Designer Kelly Martin, Assistant Stage Director Jason McStoots, and Executive Producer Kathleen Fay.

Born in Germany around 1703, Lampe moved to England in 1724 and found work as a bassoonist in the London opera houses and performed at the coronation of King George II in 1727. Premiering at the Haymarket Theatre in 1737, Lampe’s The Dragon of Wantley was the most popular operatic production of the entire 18th century in England, enjoying a 45-year run. Lampe deftly lampoons the excesses of Handelian opera in this hilarious farce.

Join us one hour before each performance in Boston for an engaging talk featuring celebrated author and musicologist Ellen T. Harris.


Boston Early Music Festival Chamber Opera Series
Paul O'Dette & Stephen Stubbs, Musical Directors
Gilbert Blin, Stage Directors
Robert Mealy, Concertmaster
Melinda Sullivan, Choreographer
Seth Bodie, Costume Designer
Kelly Martin, Lighting Designer
Jason McStoots, Assistant Stage Director
Kathleen Fay, Executive Producer

Teresa Wakim, Margery
Hannah De Priest, Mauxalinda
Aaron Sheehan, Moore
John Taylor Ward, The Dragon
Douglas Williams, Gubbins

Boston Early Music Festival Chamber Ensemble
Robert Mealy & Cynthia Roberts, violin; Sarah Darling, viola; David Morris, violoncello; Doug Balliett, double bass; Gonzalo X. Ruiz & Kathryn Montoya, oboe & recorder; Dominic Teresi, bassoon; John Thiessen & Brandon Bergeron, trumpet (Boston only); Todd Williams & Nathanael Udell, horn (Boston only); Michelle Humphreys, percussion (Boston and Troy only); Paul O’Dette, theorbo; Stephen Stubbs, theorbo & Baroque guitar; Michael Sponseller, harpsichord

Boston Early Music Festival Dance Company
Julian Donahue & Sonam Tshedzom Tingkhye


Saturday, November 25, 2023 at 8pm ET
Sunday, November 26, 2023 at 3pm ET
New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall, 30 Gainsborough Street, Boston, MA

Thursday, November 30, 2023 at 8pm ET
FIU Wertheim Performing Arts Center, Miami, FL
Presented by RK Cultural Productions,

Saturday, December 2, 2023 at 8pm ET
Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, Troy, NY,

Virtual Premiere: Saturday, December 9, 2023 at 8pm ET
Available to watch until Saturday, December 23, 2023 at 11:59pm ET


Tickets for the Boston, MA performances are priced at $125, $90, $60, $45, and $25 for the in-person performance, and $25 for the virtual event. All Boston tickets include a complimentary ticket for the virtual performance. To purchase tickets, visit or call the BEMF Box Office at 617-661-1812. Discounts are available for students and seniors.

Tickets for the Miami, FL performance are priced at $35 and are available at Tickets for the Troy, NY performance are priced at $65, $55, and $40 and are available at

Hailed by the Boston Globe for "vivid performance," since 2008 the BEMF Chamber Opera Series has taken the internationally acclaimed musicianship, scholarship, and direction showcased in BEMF's fully staged Festival opera and focused it on small-scale works in intimate productions each Thanksgiving weekend. Several productions from the Chamber Opera Series have also been presented on tour across North America with performances in New York, NY, Kansas City, MO, Vancouver, BC, Victoria, BC, Miami, FL, Katonah, NY, and Great Barrington, MA. BEMF's studio recording of the two Charpentier works was awarded the 2015 GRAMMY Award for Best Opera Recording.

Recognized as the preeminent early music presenter and Baroque opera producer in North America, the Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF) has been credited with securing Boston’s reputation as “America’s early music capital” (The Boston Globe). Founded in 1981, BEMF offers diverse programs and activities, including one GRAMMY Award–winning and five GRAMMY Award–nominated opera recordings, an annual concert series that brings early music’s brightest stars to the Boston and New York concert stages, and a biennial week-long Festival and Exhibition recognized as the “world’s leading festival of early music” (The Times, London). The 23rd Boston Early Music Festival will take place from June 8 to 15, 2025, and will feature a fully staged production of Reinhard Keiser’s Octavia. BEMF’s Artistic Leadership includes Artistic Directors Paul O’Dette and Stephen Stubbs, Opera Director Gilbert Blin, Orchestra Director Robert Mealy, and Dance Director Melinda Sullivan.

The Boston Early Music Festival is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, National Endowment for the Arts, Constellation Charitable Foundation, and WCRB Classical Radio Boston, as well as a number of generous foundations and individuals from around the world.

For more information, press tickets, or to schedule an interview, please contact Kathleen Fay at