Lo Speziale - The Apothecary


We are celebrating a big birthday - a two hundred and fiftieth birthday! Lo Speziale is an opera born in 1768 at the expense of an eccentric eighteenth-century celebrity ñ Prince Nikolaus of Austria. The Prince had an extravagant Versailles-style palace complete with opera house built by a remote duck swamp so that he and his guests could indulge in his two favourite pastimes - watching operas and shooting ducks. Haydn was the Kappelmeister responsible for conducting the operas, keeping the orchestra on form, and composing and arranging music.Lo Speziale was written for the opening of the new 400-seat theatre at Esterháza.



But unfortunately Lo Speziale didn't have the best start in life. The new theatre caught fire in 1779, along with all the music kept by the orchestra pit, including the score of Lo Speziale. What survives today is an incomplete copy of both score and libretto, from which we have developed a fully-staged opera. Now we offer a fresh and original interpretation of a wonderful product of Haydn's ever-fertile imagination, for the 250th birthday of this masterpiece.


BAROQUESTOCK brings together a superb cast, production team, and the Istantecollective under the baton of 'tremendous young conductor' [The Observer] John Andrews. A fully-staged production in the intimate setting of Heath Street Baptist Church, Lo Speziale will make full use of the unique architectural and acoustic possibilities the church affords: to unforgettable effect!

Lo Speziale (The Apothecary) … turned out to be one of the highlights of the evening”
Review of The Haydn Boys 29/04/2018 by Andrew Benson-Wilson
(The concert included the overture and two arias from the Opera)

ISTANTEcollective is a flexible period-instrument collective playing music from the 18th century and beyond. Its members appear regularly with internationally prestigious ensembles including English Baroque Soloists/Orchestre RÈvolutionnaire et Romantique, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Academy of Ancient Music, Europa Galante, Concerto Italiano, Philharmonia Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra.

Hilary Cronin

Hilary Cronin

emily gray2

Emily Gray


William Branston

Alexander Pidgen

Alexander Pidgen


>>Production Team<<

John Andrews - conductor

John Andrews

irene foto

Irene Biancalani

salvatore tabone

Salvatore Tabone

Stage Designer

Heath Street Baptist Church
18th - 20th October

6.45 - 7.10pm - Pre-opera Talk by Dr Alessandra Palidda

7.30pm - Lo Speziale

Tickets: Adults £20,  Concession (Students only) £15