OPERA North's winter season production of La traviata sees Yorkshire-born tenor Peter Auty in the role of Alfredo.

Auty, 34, who made his professional debut with Opera North in 1998, was born in Richmond, and though his family moved to Berkshire while he was 2 , he later developed a strong affiliation for the region and now lives in York with his wife and two children, who are aged four and two.

"York was where we met and we always wanted to return," said the singer, who spent 3 years as a choral scholar at York Minster. Before that, he had sung for five years in the choir at St Paul's Cathedral where he was chosen to sing Walking in the Air for the soundtrack of the film The Snowman.

While at the minster, and still debating which direction to take in his career, his teacher persuaded him to train as a tenor, and he thus went to the Royal Scottish Academy of Music where he studied under Peter Alexander Wilson.

The part of Alfredo, which he first sang last year with the Nationale Reisopera in Holland, is a dramatically demanding role which calls for a broad sweep of emotions. "There are a lot of textural blanks to work out, and reading the Dumas novel can only help so much," he said. "I spend a lot of time on stage listening, and it can be quite difficult maintaining that."

The opera, which opened in Leeds last week, is performed at Newcastle Theatre Royal on Tuesady and next Friday in rotation with The Bartered Bride and The Barber of Seville.

In the spring, Auty, who is rapidly making a role for himself as one of Britain's leading tenors, will go on perform the part of Rodolfo in Scottish Opera's new production of La Boheme, followed by an engagement with Glyndebourne on Tour in the same part.

Having sung principal roles with the Royal Opera at Covent Garden, English National Opera and several leading European countries, his ambition is to appear in all the major opera houses in the world.

In the meantime, Yorkshire audiences can look forward to hearing him closer to home. For details of next week's dates and ticket prices, ring 0870 905 5060.