Tomorrow is the big day: English Pocket Opera will publicly premiere their new Opera Blocks production, featuring a 20-min Ring Cycle, at the Clore Ballroom, Royal Festival Hall. Performances are free; just turn up at 12:30 or 3:30 and you and your children can learn all about the building blocks of opera in this comedy production at London’s beautiful Southbank Centre. See you there!
I’ve been invited to join English Pocket Opera’s production of a mini Ring Cycle at the Royal Festival Hall. This special performance will present Wagner’s epic work in a shortened performance for children on 2 July at 12:30 and 3:30 in the Clore Ballroom, as part of the “Power of Power” series.
Great first day at Big Wheel Theatre as we devise new outreach workshops for children. Big Wheel, based in the gorgeous Exmouth Market, are taking Opera Up Close’s production of Ulla’s Odyssey and creating highly entertaining workshops that we can present on our national tour. Watch this space for more details!
Fantastic to return for the 5th time to the stunning Sheldonian Theatre with the sublime City of Oxford Symphony Orchestra! I was fortunate enough to sing Mozart’s concert aria “Ch’io mi scordi di the” with the brilliant Tom Poster on piano, and Korngold’s lush “Marietta’s Lied” from Die Tote Stadt with the fabulous Stephen Bell conducting.
We’ve had our first preview of Ulla’s Odyssey on Sunday to a sold-out crowd! Production photographs to follow soon, but in the meantime, please enjoy a few photos of our final rehearsals in Brixton, courtesy of Christopher Tribble. And to purchase tickets please click here!
We have finished our first two weeks of rehearsals for Ulla’s Odyssey, working in a great new studio space in Brixton. All the blocking is in, and our sitzprobe is on Monday near the Bank of England. We’ve had working sessions with professional puppeteer and designer Matt Hutchinson. Here we are bringing Binnacle the cat to life!
The next role I’m playing is in a delightful new opera called Ulla’s Odyssey, to have its world premiere at London’s Kings Place next month. Here is the brief from Opera Up Close’s Crowdfunder campaign:
The show is inspired by Homer’s Odyssey and uses five professional opera singers, live music and puppetry to tell Ulla’s story, which includes playful modern updates of Homer’s monsters. It is suitable for children aged 7+, families and any adult with a sense of fun and wonder.
This new opera was the winner of the 2014 Flourish competition, an annual opera writing competition run by OperaUpClose to find the hottest new composing talent emerging in the opera world. It has music by Anthony Young (from New Zealand) and words by Leanna Brodie (from Canada), so it is an international team!
Ulla’s Odyssey will run for four performances throughout October and November this year at the beautiful Kings Place in London, with plans underway to tour the production in Spring 2016 to theatres and schools around the UK.
We are an arts charity and receive no regular funding, therefore we rely heavily on our friends and theatre-loving public to help make our ideas a reality. So help us make Ulla’s Odyssey the magnificent adventure it deserves to be by donating towards our crowdfunding campaign!
Thanks to the talented Chris Marlowe who made some excellent HD videos of the Concert for Nepal last weekend. Here is the video of my performance of Rusalka’s “Song to the Moon” by Dvorak, and you can find it in my video gallery too.
The extraordinary Concert for Nepal was a resounding success yesterday, with the warm sunshine ensuring we had loads of generous listeners in Old Spittalfields Market, Shoreditch. I was fortunate enough to be sandwiched between the international superstars Kathryn Harries and Graeme Danby, and accompanied by the talented Nigel Foster. Here are some photos from the day, with more in my photograph gallery, and please do donate to Unicef for this noble cause.
The exact line-up and schedule has been announced for next Sunday’s exciting Concert for Nepal, in London’s Old Spittalfields Market. The concert will last all afternoon, from 12:30 until around 6:30, with well known singers performing arias, songs, and excerpts from best-loved operas. Situated in the gateway to the market, underneath the canvas canopy in Bishops Square, audience members will be free to come and go as they please. The event is entirely free but generous donations will be encouraged.
I will be singing twice: Around 3 pm with orchestra I will be singing Mozart’s short but unbelievably beautiful duet “Bei Maennern” from Die Zauberfloete, and then around 5:20 with piano I will be singing one of my favourite pieces of music, Dvorak’s “Song to the Moon” from Rusalka. Please click here for more details from Head First Productions.
I’ve been invited to participate in the Concert for Nepal at Old Spittalfields Market. On the 6th September, many of the world’s finest opera singers and players will meet at London’s Historical Spitalfields Market for an entire afternoon of classical music, dance and spoken word to raise money in aid of Unicef’s Earthquake Appeal in Nepal. I’ll post again soon with the times that I’ll be appearing, but in the meantime please visit their Facebook page for more information.