Lore Lixenberg 620
Mezzo-Soprano Lore Lixenberg. Photograph: Mahogany Opera Group

A Stoke Newington singer will star in the world’s first ‘mindfulness opera’ this September at the Barbican, which is to feature yoga, communal eating and even washing up.

Mezzo-soprano Lore Lixenberg and seven musicians are to perform Lost in Thought, a four-hour opera for voices, instruments and audience based on the structure of an extended meditation.

Audience members are to work alongside the performers to create an “inner journey of mindfulness” through periods of meditation, rest, communal eating and yoga.

One of the most crucial parts is the washing up section, which develops into a communal performance by using a rhythm that occurs throughout the rest of the piece.

Composer Rolf Hind thought of the concept and composed the music for Lost in Thought, which is based on Buddhism.

Hind’s idea is to provide an antidote to the ‘critical mind’ that audiences bring to concerts and challenge traditional boundaries between audience and performers.

Artistic Director of Mahogany Opera Group and director of Lost in Thought, Frederic Wake-Walker, added that opera not only grapples with the desire to sing, dance, ritualise and tell stories, but can also “express most relevantly our multi-media, multi-cultural existence today”.

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