Welsh National Opera enjoys £1.2m Getty gift

Windfall to help fund five productions, including Getty’s own work


Welsh National Opera (WNO) has announced that it has received a gift of more than £1.2m from Gordon Getty. The considerable sum will be used to stage five contemporary operas over the next five years, including one by Getty himself.


Getty’s Usher House will be staged by WNO in 2014, alongside Debussy’s The Fall of the House of Usher, a work left unfinished by the Frenchman but since completed by composer Robert Orledge. Both operas will be directed by WNO’s chief executive David Pountney.

Other productions planned for the contemporary opera series include the UK premiere of Jonathan Harvey’s Wagner Dream, plus Richard Ayres’s Peter Pan and Unsuk Chin’s Alice in Wonderland.

Geraint Talfan Davies, WNO’s chairman, has welcomed the gift, adding that it ‘will allow us to enhance and extend that sense of artistic adventure in our programme over the next few years.’


Gordon Getty is the son of oil tycoon and arts philanthropist John Paul Getty. As a composer, he has had a number of works, including his opera Plump Jack, recorded on the Pentatone label.