Unexpected Opera



To rebrand Unexpected Opera, reflecting their desire ‘to make opera that is engaging and fun as well as dramatic and moving’.


The new logo uses emoji-like letterforms which act as shorthand for laughter, singing and surprise, immediately suggesting a witty, fun and playful offering – not what you might expect from opera. The faces are also reminiscent of the ancient Greek masks often associated with theatre.

Our publicity for Unexpected Opera’s The Rinse Cycle (‘Wagner’s Ring cycle conditioned with comedy and shrunk to 2 hours’, set in a laundrette), was designed to resemble a washing machine featuring a ‘gold-ring’ rim around its door – a reference to the central object of Wagner’s epic tale. In keeping with the washroom setting and comedic flavour of the show, laundry symbols with playful meanings were incorporated in the programme.

Production photography by Robert Workman