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NOISE is an exciting new opera company based in Glasgow, led by Artistic Director James Robert Carson and Music Director Gareth Williams. It was founded in 2011 with the intention of broadening the audience for contemporary opera in Scotland.
James Robert Carson (cred. Kris Kesiak)

cred. Kris Kesiak

James Robert Carson is a theatre and opera director. He founded and is the Artistic Director of NOISE, New Opera In Scotland Events.

Originally from the South West Scotland he attended Stirling University. This was followed by two years in San Francisco working in experimental theatre and a year in Japan studying with a company of Noh actors.


After studying at The Drama Centre, London, he started working on the London Fringe. From 1988 – 1990 he was attached to The Royal Lyceum Theatre in Edinburgh.


Freelancing throughout Britain he has produced work in many theatres including Dundee Rep, Greenwich Theatre, The Citizens Theatre Glasgow, The Albany Empire, The Arcola and The Embassy Theatre. He has worked for touring companies such as ETT and directed commercial productions of Dad’s Army and ‘Allo ‘Allo.

He has also directed in many of the leading Drama Schools and has just been appointed a senior lecturer in drama at the University of East Anglia.


His work in opera started at Glyndebourne where he has worked on numerous occasions most recently reviving Peter Hall’s production of Midsummer Night’s Dream. He has produced operas for Greek National Opera, Holland Park Opera, Scottish Opera Go Round, English Touring Opera, Opera on a Shoestring and the Aldeburgh Festival. He has also produced operas and scenes for The Royal College, The Royal Academy, The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and Die Nieuwe Opera Academie in Amsterdam.


James Robert has recently taken up an appointment as a Senior Lecturer in Drama at the University of East Anglia, and is an Associate Professor in the Drama Department at the University of East Anglia.

Originally from Northern Ireland, Gareth Williams is a Chancellor’s Fellow at Edinburgh College of Art. His compositions seek to find new participants, collaborators and audiences for new opera and music theatre, to shed light on stories and communities that have been overlooked, and to explore ideas of vulnerability in vocal writing.

Williams was Composer in Residence at Scottish Opera from 2011 to 2014. During this time, he created a series of operas and projects, including ‘Breath Cycle’, at the respiratory ward of Gartnavel Royal Hospital, where he wrote songs, ensemble pieces, and opera specifically for patients with Cystic Fibrosis, who weren’t allowed in the same room as one another. Breath Cycle was nominated for a Royal Philharmonic Award in 2015.

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He has created three operas with NOISE Opera since 2012, each one bringing a new collaborator to the genre, from the patrons of Glasgow’s oldest bar, Shetland fiddler, Chris Stout, and the indie band, Admiral Fallow.


‘Rocking Horse Winner’, produced by Tapestry Opera, a chamber opera, adapted from a short story by D.H. Lawrence by librettist Anna Chatterton, was premiered in Toronto in May 2016, and was nominated for 9 Dora Mavor Moore Awards, winning 5, including Outstanding Musical Production.  A new production was staged at Saratoga Opera in 2018, and described as ‘beautiful and disturbing, gripping and provocative.’ (Classical Voice America)


From 2015 - 2018 Williams collaborated with Oliver Emanuel to create The 306 Trilogy.  306 Dawn (***** the Herald), 306 Day (**** The Times) and 306 Dusk (***** The Herald, ***** The Stage) were a collection of music theatre works over three years telling the story of the British soldiers shot for cowardice during WW1, produced by the National Theatre of Scotland in partnership with 14-18 Now.


Anna Hainsworth – Chair

James Robert Carson – Artistic Director

Gareth Williams – Music Director

Alasdair Campbell

Jamie MacDougall

Alayne Swanson

Gregor Johnson

Shuna Scott Sendall


Special Adviser to the Company – Stephen White

Development Director - Catharine Exposito




NOISE (New Opera in Scotland Events) is a Registered Charity, SC045753,

as well as a Limited Company, No. SC391297.


Company Address: 1/1, 10 Circus Drive, Glasgow, Scotland, G31 2JH

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