Search for stories as Sunderland AFC the opera takes shape

Launch at the Stadium of Light of the Sunderland Opera - (l to r) conductor Marco Romano, author David Almond, Sunderland-born mezzo soprano Alison Bartram and composer Marcos Fernandez.
Launch at the Stadium of Light of the Sunderland Opera - (l to r) conductor Marco Romano, author David Almond, Sunderland-born mezzo soprano Alison Bartram and composer Marcos Fernandez.
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A CITY-wide storytelling project is looking for fans of the Black Cats to talk about the ups and downs of following The Lads.

Fans’ stories will help shape An Opera for Sunderland, which will create a musical snapshot of what football means to the people of Wearside.

Supporters taking part in the Black Cats’ Stories project will work with experienced digital storytelling expert Alex Henry over a series of workshops at the Stadium of Light, before taking part in a celebration event where the stories will be displayed.

Six workshops will run from January 10 to February 14 where fans can create their digital stories – a short piece of audio-visual composed of photographs, sound, moving image or animation.

Musicians will use the finished pieces to create An Opera for Sunderland, which will be written by award-winning North East author David Almond and composer Marcos Fernandez.

Foundation of Light has teamed up with Music in the Minster and Sunderland City Council, with funding from The Cultural Spring, to find fans who can help create a musical ode to the city’s passion for the beautiful game which will be performed at Sunderland Minster next year.

Louise Taylor, from Music in the Minster, said: “We’re delighted to be working alongside Foundation of Light to give SAFC fans the chance to get involved in what will be a great cultural event. We’re appealing for any fan who thinks they have a story to share to come forward and register their interest.”

The stories will also form part of a touring exhibition next March.

Fans interested should fill out an online form at www.foundationoflight.co.uk or www.surveymonkey.com/r/blackcatsstories, or request a printed version from, ring 551 5191.