TICKETS sold out for last night’s world premiere of a Welsh National Opera based on the life of suffragette Lady Rhondda.

There was a huge turnout for Rhondda Rips It Up! at the Riverfront Theatre.

The feminist musical comedy follows the story of Margaret Haig Thomas, also known as Lady Rhonndda - one of the key players of the suffrage movement

The performance began at 7.30pm but activities took place throughout the day, with a screen in the foyer airing quotes empowering women in poetry and songs.

Many people donned purple and green – the colours of the suffragette movement – along with sashes and badges saying: “Votes for Women”.

The largely female turnout also waved flags, including Newport West AM Jayne Bryant.

The star of the show – Madeleine Shaw – had her mother, Elspeth Shaw and her aunt Hilary Elliott at the premiere.

“There’s a real buzz around the place,” said Mrs Elliott.

“I think Madeleine is really excited about it.

“It’s going to be a long run, with lots of performances, but she’s very confident.

“I don’t know whether I’ll get another chance to watch it, as she’s had quite a few friends queuing up.

“I didn’t know a lot about Lady Rhondda before, but I’ve learnt lots.”

The Community Chorus sang a number of songs inspired by suffragette chants from marches.

Following two months of rehearsals, they also belted out anthems such as Oh Dear What Can The Matter Be with the lyrics tailored to the suffragettes and feminist movement.

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