Samuel Evans is a former choral scholar at King’s College, Cambridge, and recently completed the opera course at the Royal College of Music International Opera School. Upon graduation, he was awarded the prestigous Tagore Gold Medal, which was presented to him by HRH The Prince of Wales. He is a Samling Scholar, and was a finalist in the 2007 Kathleen Ferrier Awards. As a winner of the Maisie Lewis Prize he made his solo recital debut at the Wigmore Hall. He also won both First Prize and the Audience Prize at the 2009 London Welsh Young Singer of the Year, and was a finalist in the Welsh Singer of the Year Competition at St. David’s Hall, Cardiff.
His operatic roles include Garibaldo Rodelinda in the London Handel Festival, Don Alfonso Cosi fan Tutte at the Royal College of Music, Kilian Der Freischütz at the Opéra Comique under Sir John Eliot Gardiner and The Forester The Cunning Little Vixen at the Ryedale Festival. He has also sung Figaro Le Nozze di Figaro and Guglielmo Cosi fan Tutte for Vignette Productions in London and France, Chelsias Susanna for Iford, Giacchino Leonora for Bampton Classical Opera, Aeneas Dido and Aeneas for the Armonico Consort, Leporello Don Giovanni for Opera-by-Definition, Pallante Agrippina for Barber Opera, and Judas Pilgrim’s Progress at Sadler’s Wells under Richard Hickox, as well as performing on tour with Essential Scottish Opera. In concert, he has performed the role of Le Grand Prêtre in Rameau’s Castor et Pollux at the Salle Pleyel in Paris under Gardiner.
Concert engagements have included Bach Christmas Oratorio at the Spitalfields Festival, Bach B Minor Mass in the Bachfest Leipzig with the English Baroque Soloists/ Gardiner, Mozart Requiem at the Royal Albert Hall and St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Mozart Vesperae Solennes de Confessore in Salzburg Cathedral, Bach St Matthew Passion at the Fairfield Halls, Haydn Theresienmesse at St. John’s Smith Square, Rutter Mass of the Children at Cadogan Hall, Monteverdi Vespers in Southwark Cathedral and Beethoven Symphony No.9 for Highgate Choral Society. He has given recitals at St John’s Smith Square and The Peak Festival.
Samuel’s recent and forthcoming engagements include his BBC Proms debut in Der Freischütz with Gardiner, Mozart C Minor Mass with The Northern Sinfonia / Thomas Zehetmair, Handel Messiah with the Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra in Norway, and Bach Christmas Oratorio with the Australian Chamber Orchestra in Sydney Opera House. In the summer of 2013 he will sing roles in the Britten Church Parables with Mahogany Opera in St Petersburg and the Aldeburgh Festival.
Marcus Farnsworth was awarded first prize in the 2009 Wigmore Hall International Song Competition, and the Song Prize at the 2011 Kathleen Ferrier Competition.
Forthcoming recitals include debuts at the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam and La Monnaie, Brussels with Mark Padmore and Julius Drake and a return to the Wigmore Hall to sing Tit for Tat with Malcolm Martineau and Canticles with Julius Drake as part of their 2012 Britten Festival. Marcus will also give
four concerts for the Australian Chamber Music Festival, with music by Barber, Britten, Poulenc and Brahms; a recital for the Lammermuir Festival and BBC Radio 3; a recital of Hugo Wolf for the Oxford Lieder Festival, to be recorded and concerts with the Carducci Quartet including Finzi Footpath and Stile and Barber Dover Beach. Recent highlights have included a Wigmore Hall recital with James Baillieu and further recitals with Simon Lepper, Iain Burnside, and Graham Johnson. Marcus has also taken part in a Schubertiade with The Prince Consort in Perth and will appear with the Myrthen Ensemble at the Wigmore Hall in 2013.
Opera plans this season and beyond include Eddy in Mark-Anthony Turnage Greek for Music Theatre Wales; Gugliemo in a new production by Katie Mitchell of Mozart Così fan tutte and English Clerk in Britten Death in Venice for English National Opera and in concert, Sid in Britten Albert Herring with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Steuart Bedford.
Concert plans include Britten War Requiem with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and at Truro Cathedral; Berlioz L’enfance du Christ with the BBC SO; Dvorak Te Deum with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra; Monteverdi Vespers, on tour, including Lille and Essen with Emmanuelle Haïm; Haydn Paukenmesse with the BBC Scottish SO and Bernard Labardie; St Matthew Passion (Christus and bass arias) in Poland with the Gabrieli Consort and Paul McCreesh and Peter Maxwell Davies Eight Songs for a Mad King on a UK tour with the Hebrides Ensemble. In 2013, Marcus will sing Son in a new work by David Sawer Flesh and Blood with the BBCSO and Ilan Volkov and take part in a European tour and recording of Thomas Larcher’s Die Nacht der Verlorenen for baritone and ensemble.
Recent opera highlights include Novice’s Friend in Britten Billy Budd for ENO; the title role in Britten Owen Wingrave for the International Chamber Music Festival in Nuremberg and in concert, Kilian Der Freischütz with the LSO and Sir Colin Davis and Aeneas in Purcell Dido and Aeneas for the Early Opera Company and Christian Curnyn at Wigmore Hall.
Marcus has also recently sung Nielsen Symphony No 3 with the LSO and Colin Davis; Bach Ich habe Genug and St John Passion (arias) with the Academy of Ancient Music; Eight Songs for a Mad King with the Wermlands Opera Orchestra, Karlstad, Sweden and Bach St John and St Matthew Passions (Christus and bass arias) with the Gabrieli Consort.
Marcus was a chorister at Southwell Minster and read music at the University of Manchester, graduating with a first class honours degree. He completed his studies at the Royal Academy of Music in July 2011, where roles included Guglielmo Così fan tutte; Sid Albert Herring; Oreste in Cavalli Giasone and Meredith in Peter Maxwell Davies Kommilitonen!
After attending Wells Cathedral School as a student of Hilary Coates, Alison Farr was awarded a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music where she studied with Christopher Elton and Martin Roscoe, graduating with a first class honours degree and a postgraduate diploma. Alison has won several prizes and competitions, including the Audi Junior Musician 1994, the UK section of the European Music for Youth Prize 1996 and the Piano section of BBC Young Musician 1998. She was a prize winner at the Olivier Messiaen International Competition in Paris in 2000 and a finalist at the Newport International Competition for Young Pianists in 2003. Alison enjoys a varied career of performing as both soloist and chamber musician, teaching and accompanying. As a soloist and chamber musician, Alison has performed at many prestigious venues including the Wigmore Hall, Cadogan Hall, Purcell Room, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Fairfield Halls Croydon, St George’s Hall Bristol and at festivals including Brighton, Newbury, Two Moors, Chichester Festivities and Ribble Valley International Piano Week. She has performed as concerto soloist with orchestras such as the Bournemouth Symphony, the Ulster and the Royal Philharmonic Concert. Abroad she has performed in Moscow, Paris, the Gulf States and Israel.
Neil Fisenden was born in Perth and joined the West Australian Symphony Orchestra as Second Flute in 1974, before being appointed principal piccolo four years later. He was a founding member of the Perth Woodwind Quintet, performing often in concerts and recordings for the ABC, and has appeared regularly as soloist with the WASO. In 1979 he was made Principal Flute of the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, and in the same year awarded a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship to study in London. During his four-year stay in Adelaide, he frequently performed as a soloist with both the Adelaide Symphony and Adelaide Chamber Orchestras. He returned to Perth in 1983 as Principal Flute of the West Australian Symphony and continued to appear regularly as a soloist, notably as soloist for the 1983 tour to Singapore and as a Master Series soloist in the 1993 season. He is in great demand as a teacher, and is chief flute examiner and woodwind specialist advisor to the Australian Music Examinations Board. He is keenly involved in chamber music, featuring in performances in the past two years’ Perth International Arts Festivals. In 2004, he was elected as a Director of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra.
Born in Dublin, Máire Flavin represented Ireland at BBC Cardiff Singer of the World 2011, reaching the Song Prize final. Máire recently made the move into lyric soprano repertoire receiving critical acclaim in her role and company debut as Fiordiligi in Opera North’s Cosí fan tutte. She is due to make another role debut as Mimi with Opera Theatre Company in the Spring. Soprano roles have included Agrippina, Irish Youth Opera and Northern Ireland Opera; Second Lady, Welsh National Opera; Emmy (Der Vampyr), Everyman Theatre Cork and Musetta for Lyric Opera Ireland. Máire has worked as a mezzo with companies such as Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera and Glyndebourne. Roles include Tisbe, Scottish Opera; Nancy (Albert Herring), Mid Wales Opera; Dido, Theatre Champs Elysées; Dorabella , Welsh National Opera; Mercedes (Carmen), Regents Opera; Jacinthe (Gretry’s L’amant jaloux), Bampton Classical Opera; Public Opinion (Orpheus in the Underworld), Scottish Opera; cover Beatrice, Welsh National Opera; cover Nerone (L’Incoronazione di Poppea), Glyndebourne on Tour. Whilst a student at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama her roles included title role in Massenet’s Chérubin; Aurelio (Donizetti’s L’Assedio di Calais); The Queen of England (Sallinen’s The King goes forth to France) and Clarina (Rossini’s La cambiale di matrimonio) as well as Venus (Oliver/Peri’s Euridice) for British Youth Opera. Máire is an alumna of both the Opera Theatre Company Young Artist and Britten Pears Young Artist programmes.
With a growing orchestral repertoire Máire made her RTE National Symphony Orchestra debut singing Berlioz’s Les Nuits d’Été in the National Concert Hall, Dublin and has since performed Mahler’s Second Symphony with the RTE NSO. She made her Royal Albert Hall debut in Mahler’s Eigth Symphony as a mezzo soprano. Máire is a regular with the RTE Concert Orchestra including their 1916 Reflecting the Rising Mozart Requiem, lunchtime series and Stravinsky’s Pulcinella. With a great affinity for song she has worked with pianists including Simon Lepper, Gary Matthewman and Nigel Foster performing at the London Song Festival with Roderick Williams, the Music for Wexford recital series, Waterford Music Festival, Estoril Music Festival, Rose Street Recital Series in Belfast, taking part in the Graham Johnson Songmakers Almanac masterclasses and was the first singer to be the recipient of the concerto prize at the Royal Irish Academy of Music performing Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder with their orchestra in the National Concert Hall Dublin.
Máire is a graduate of the National Opera Studio, London, the opera course at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, a masters from the Royal Irish Academy of Music and a joint honours degree in Psychology and Music from Queen’s University, Belfast.
Máire was generously supported during her studies by a Bank of Ireland Milliennium Scholarship, The Musicians Benevolent Fund, the Worshipful Company of Barbers and the Arts Council, Ireland.
Mark Ford was born in Bromley and educated at St Dunstan’s College, Catford, where he studied the organ with the international recitalist David Sanger. He continued his academic and musical studies at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, where he held an Organ Scholarship and read law. Whilst at Cambridge, Mark directed the Chapel Choir (whom he accompanied on tours to Bavaria and Ireland), as well as the college Choir and Orchestra, and sang in the University Chamber Choir under Timothy Brown. More recently, he studied piano with Elena Kiseleva, whose insights and coaching were invaluable in the preparations for recording this CD.
In 1994, Mark founded The Purcell Singers, a choir which he has directed in concerts of wide-ranging music from the fifteenth century to the present day. His passion for Georg Schumann’s music began with a chance discovery of Schumann’s Opus 52 motets for double choir and eventually led to him recording the composer’s complete choral works with The Purcell Singers. The first of these discs was Gramophone Magazine’s Critics’ Choice in January 2002, and the second also described as a “hugely impressive disc” (Gramophone). He has also made numerous commercial recordings with the choir and has conducted sessions at all the major London recording studios.
By profession, Mark is a solicitor. He is a leading authority on legal process outsourcing and previously built a team of 60 lawyers in a pioneering business unit in his firm’s Delhi office. Mark is currently Chief Knowledge Officer at a major US law firm and leads a team of more than 300 knowledge management professionals across the world.
Jens Franke, born to an eminent German musical family, trained at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama and King’s College, London. An artist of eclectic taste, equally at home in the concert room or theatre, he has worked with English National Ballet and was formerly orchestral guitarist of the European Union Youth Orchestra, in which capacity he appeared in concert with Bernard Haitink, playing such venues as the Concertgebouw, the Konzerthaus in Berlin, and Sadler’s Wells. He has commissioned a number of new works for guitar including a theatre cycle by Oscar Colomina i Bosch, setting Harris’s List of Covent Garden Ladies (an eighteenth-century listing of London prostitutes), premièred at the Barbican Centre, London in December 2011. Recording credits include two EPs, eight CDs for Schott London, associated with a series of Romantic and Baroque anthologies, an album of music by Johann Kaspar Mertz (Stone Records), a collection of Schubert songs with Anna Huntley, recorded at the Wigmore Hall (Quartz) and, alongside his long-standing guitar duet partner Jørgen Skogmo, the complete ensemble works of Antoine de Lhoyer (Naxos).
Megumi Fujita, the daughter of a Japanese diplomat, studied around the world including the United States, Japan, Iraq and Israel. She studied at the Yehudi Menuhin School (UK), Rubin Academy of Music (Tel-Aviv University) and the Royal College of Music (UK), with Simon Nicholls, Louis Kentner, Vlado Perlemuter, Irina Zaritskaya and Alexandra Andrievsky. Prizewinner of numerous competitions including Bösendorfer International Competition (Belgium), Montreal International Competition, PTNA Piano Competition (Japan) and Commemorative Medal from the F.Chopin Scholarship Fund Committee (Poland). Megumi has performed numerous concertos and recitals throughout the world including Austria, Belgium, Canada, Egypt, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Morocco, Poland, Romania, Switzerland, Turkey, UK, and USA, at prestigious venues including the Barbican Hall, Conway Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall, Purcell Room, Atheneum Hall (Romania), Place des Arts (Montreal, Canada), Cemal Resit Rey Hall (Istanbul, Turkey), Kioi Hall (Tokyo), Hyogo Performing Arts Center (Hyogo, Japan) and Oji Hall (Tokyo). The conductors Megumi has collaborated with include Sergiu Comissiona, Issac Karabchevsky, Sung Kwak, Louis Lane, Robert Shaw, Christian Mandeal, I.Ionescu–Galati, David Josefowitz, and Yukio Kitahara. Megumi is also an active chamber musician as a member of the Fujita Piano Trio, having performed at over 150 venues in the UK. They have been awarded the prestigious Aoyama Barocksaal Prize (Japan) in 2007. Megumi has recorded eight CDs, six of which are as Fujita Piano Trio, and two solo discs including the Rachmaninov 24 Preludes, with ASV label and the Swedish label Intim Musik.
Christina Gansch is a graduate of Salzburg’s Mozarteum and the Royal Academy of Music, whose recent engagements have included Barbarina Le nozze di Figaro at the Theater an der Wien under Harnoncourt and Amore Orfeo ed Euridice at the Opéra national de Montpellier. She is a member of the International Studio of the Hamburg State Opera where her roles this season include Gretel Hänsel und Gretel, Oscar Un ballo in Maschera and Frasquita Carmen. Her 2014/15 also includes a return to the Opéra national de Montpellier for Servilia La clemenza di Tito and Barbarina in a new production of Le nozze di Figaro at the Salzburg Festival.
In concert, she has appeared in Vienna’s Musikverein with the Orchester Wiener Akademie and in the Konzerthaus as part of the international festival Resonanzen, at the Verbier Festival under López-Cobos and Harding, at the Internationale Händel-Festspiele Göttingen, at London’s Wigmore Hall with the Royal Academy of Music’s Song Circle and in Salzburg’s Mozarteum.
Artists with whom she has studied include Richard Bonynge, Angela Gheorghiu, Edita Gruberova, Angelika Kirchschlager, Ann Murray, Dennis O´Neill, Thomas Quasthoff and Gudrun Volkert. She continues her studies with Lillian Watson.
James Gilchrist began his working life as a doctor, turning to a full-time career in music in 1996.
He is in huge demand internationally as a concert artist. Recent engagements include Frank Martin’s Der Sturm at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Bach’s B Minor Mass at the Bach Festival in Salzburg, Saul (Laeiszhalle, Hamburg), further performances of War Requiem (Orquesta y Coro Nacionales de España), St Matthew Passion with the Tonhalle Orchestra in Zürich, King Arthur with the Concert Spirituel in London, Luxemburg and Paris and Athalia with Concerto Köln in Köln, New York and Paris. Future engagements include performances at the Presteigne, Lichfield, Cheltenham, Leicester, Edinburgh and Three Choirs Festivals, On Wenlock Edge with the Endellion String Quartet at the Leeds Lieder Festival and Messiah with the St Louis Symphony Orchestra.
After many years focussing on the dramatic bel canto repertoire, Jenufa Gleich changed her fach to the dramatic Germanic Repertoire, with a focus on Wagner. Recent performances included her Hong Kong Philharmonic debut, under the baton of Jaap Van Zweden, singing Third Norn from Götterdämmerung, and recording it for NAXOS as part of their Ring Cycle.
Jenufa Gleich made her Wagner debut in Longborough Festival Opera’s Ring Cycle conducted by Anthony Negus, where she appeared in the following roles: Helmwige (Die Walküre), Freia (Das Rheingold) and Third Norn (Götterdämmerung). She also covered the role of Sieglinde (Die Walküre). For The Mastersingers Wagner Society of London she also appeared as Third Norn, and Leonora in Maggio Musicale Opera Fiorentino’s Symposium Series on Fidelio in Florence, Italy.
Other recent engagements include covering the title role in Turandot with the Puccini Festival in Torre del Lago at the Teatro Verdi in Pisa, conducted by Valerio Galli, the role of Selika in L’Africaine with The Opera Orchestra of New York at Avery Fischer Hall with Eve Queler conducting, Queen Elisabeth in Roberto Devereux with Opera Holland Park with Bonynge conducting, and Jenny in The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny with Teatro Goldoni in Livorno, Italy, conducted by Jonathan Webb and directed by Alessio Pizzech.
Additional engagements include: New York City Opera as Marenka (The Bartered Bride), Bel Canto at Caramoor of New York as Lisa (La Sonnambula) and First Lady (Die Zauberflöte), Opera Festival della Toscana as the Soprano in Carmina Burana, Opera Grosseto as Violetta (La Traviata) and with the Queens Symphony Orchestra summer concert series, singing excerpts from Don Giovanni (Donna Elvira). For the 150th birthday celebration of Puccini in Lucca, Italy, she sang excerpts from Turandot and Suor Angelica.
As a recitalist, she has appeared at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, The Vatican and St. Patricks Cathedral in repertoire including, Wagners Wesendonk Lieder, Mahler Rückert Lieder, Samuel Barber Songs and Kurt Weill Songs.
She sang the world premiere of ‘The Last Leaf’ written by Gary Papach, where she created the role of ‘Sue’ with the North Czech Philharmonic Another world premiere was with the Queens Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Arthur Fagen with Leonard Lehrman’s ‘Licht im Dunkel’.
Christopher Gould read music at Clare College, Cambridge before taking up a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music to study accompaniment with John Streets, Malcolm Martineau and Gareth Hancock, supported by The Countess of Munster Musical Trust. On graduating he was awarded the Her Royal Princess Alice’s Prize for outstanding contribution to the Royal Academy of Music and in 2001 he was made an Associate. He was the first young pianist to receive an award from The Geoffrey Parsons Trust in 1996; this was followed by the first prize in the two most prestigious accompaniment competitions: the Gerald Moore Award (1998) and the Wigmore International Song Competition (2001).
Christopher is staff pianist and coach on several international summer schools and divides his time between vocal coaching and a busy recital career. In the UK he has performed with such artists as Sarah Walker, Ann Murray, Lorraine Hunt Lieberson and Geraldine McGreevy at the Wigmore Hall, St Johns Smith Square, the Purcell Room and on BBC Radio 3. Concerts abroad have included recitals at the Aix-en-Provence Festival, the Opera House in Lille and in Italy, Israel and Japan. Recital projects include a tour of the UK with bass-baritone Andrew Foster-Williams performing Winterreise in a multimedia presentation for Opera North.
Anna Grevelius studied at the GSMD in London and was later accepted to the Benjamin Britten International Opera School at RCM, as a Sir Thomas Allen Scholar, studying with Lillian Watson. She then joined the National Opera Studio for the 2006/07 season. She was the winner of the 2004 Gerald Moore Award’s Singer’s Prize and the 2006 RCM Lies Askonas Competition.
Operatic roles include Dorabella Così fan tutte (Classical Opera Company), Prince Orlovsky Die Fledermaus, Lucretia The Rape of Lucretia (both RCM) and Onoria in Handel’s Ezio (London Handel Festival), 2nd Witch Dido and Aeneas (Aix-en-Provence Festival), Cecilio Lucio Silla (Classical Opera Company), Proserpina Orfeo (Drottningholm), Nerone L’Incoronazione di Poppea, Pitti-Sing Mikado, Fyodor Boris Godunov (ENO), Rusalka (Grange Park Opera), Rosina/The Barber of Seville (ENO), 2nd Lady/Magic Flute (Festival d’Aix-en-Provence), Siebel Faust for ENO, Varvara/Katya Kabanova for ENO and at the Teatro Nacional de Sao Carlos in Lisbon, Cherubino Le Nozze di Figaro at Garsington Opera, Juno Platée with René Jacobs for De Nederlandse Opera, Dorabella at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris and Cherubino for the Opera National de Paris.
In concert and recital she has worked with Roger Vignoles, Eugen Asti, Bernard Haitink, the South Bank Sinfonia, English Chamber Orchestra, Leon Botstein and the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra and appeared at the Oxford Lieder Festival, Cambridge and London’s King’s Place. She is also featured on Hyperion’s latest volume of Mendelssohn songs, with Eugene Asti.
Paul Guinery studied at the RCM with Stephen Savage and was also a student répétiteur with the Opera School. He later took a degree in Modern Languages at The Queen’s College, Oxford. Since 1997 he has worked extensively with the wind quintet Harmoniemusik as their regular pianist, performing a wide variety of chamber music each summer in the group’s annual festival at St.Columb in Cornwall and has also featured there as soloist in concertos by Bach and Mozart.
As well as regular concerts throughout the year in the UK, the group has toured abroad, including visits to Belgium and Germany, and to France, twice taking part in the Oloron Festival. His recording debut was with Harmoniemusik in 2007 and since then he has also made a disc of solo works by Rachmaninov.
Paul is a former vice-chairman of The Delius Society for whom he’s given many talks about the composer as well as a lecture-recital at Steinway Hall. He’s currently writing a series of analyses of Delius’s works for a book to be pubished in 2013. For many years Paul presented music programmes for BBC Radio 3 including the Proms and such long-running series as Your Concert Choice, Sacred and Profane and Choirworks.
Timothy Hamilton studied Singing, Composition and Jazz Piano at the University of Kent: Christ Church College, UK with Benjamin Luxon, Paul Edlin and Lionel Grigson, and Singing at Trinity College of Music with Teresa Cahill and Janice Chapman.
As a composer, Timothy’s works include many choral and orchestral pieces, including several anthems and masses that are performed at various cathedrals, churches and concert venues throughout the UK, USA and Canada. Timothy is also in demand as a composer and arranger for other genres, including Film and Television.
Timothy is a graduate of ENO’s prestigious ‘Knack’ programme, and has performed with English National Opera, Scottish Opera, Aldeburgh and Bregenz Festivals, Queen’s Royal Chapel of the Savoy, Canterbury Cathedral Choir, Raymond Gubbay, BBC Wales Chorus and the Grammy nominated French vocal ensemble Accentus. He has also been on tours and recorded film soundtracks with London Voices (The Hobbit and Snow White and The Huntsman). Timothy has also made numerous recordings with Accentus, including the best selling Faure Requiem.
Future projects include a requiem mass, commissioned to commemorate the centenary of the start of the First World War.
A native of Rosebud, Alberta, Keith Hamm is the Principal Violist of the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra.
Keith received his training at The Glenn Gould School of Music under the instruction of Steven Dann, and at the Mount Royal Conservatory under Nicholas Pulos. Other influences include Pinchas Zukerman, Mark Fewer, the London Haydn Quartet, and formative summers at the Chamber Music Programme at Le Domaine Forget.
Keith is an alumnus of the International Musicians Seminar at Prussia Cove, the Sarasota Music Festival, and Masterclasses at The Banff Centre. He has been featured on CBC Radio, Classical 96.3 and has been named one of Canada’s Hottest 30 Classical Musicians Under 30 by CBC.
A dedicated chamber musician, Keith has been invited to perform at the Ravinia Festival as guest violist with the Royal Conservatory’s ARC Ensemble, the SweetWater Music Festival in Owen Sound, Ottawa Chamberfest, Music By The Sea in Bamfield, British Columbia and Sunday Chatter in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Keith is the Founder and Artistic Director of The Rosebud Chamber Music Festival in Rosebud, Alberta, Canada. He performs on a viola made by in 2001 by Joseph Curtin and a bow by James Tubbs.
Lisa Harper-Brown, critically acclaimed as ‘radiant both vocally and visually’, is a unique and commanding performer. Equally at home on the recital platform or the operatic stage, Lisa has delighted audiences from Sydney to London in a range of repertoire from Bach to Bernstein.
Lisa made her debut on the main-stage for Opera Australia singing Pamina in The Magic Flute. Since then her operatic roles have included Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Diana in Orpheus in the Underworld, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Elsa in Lohengrin, Eva in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, the title role in Salome, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, and Countess Almaviva in Niel Armfield’s exciting interpretation of The Marriage of Figaro, for which she received a prestigious Sir Robert Helpmann Award.
Work with other companies has included Musetta in Opera Queensland’s captivating production of La Bohème, and Ortlinde in the State Opera of South Australia’s highly acclaimed and ground-breaking production of Die Walküre, as part of their complete Ring Cycle by Wagner directed by Elke Neidhardt.
After relocating to Berlin to live she debuted as First Lady in Die Zauberflőte for Hamburg State Opera, and was seen regularly in Concerts, Festivals and recitals throughout Germany until her return to Australia in 2009.
In 2010 Lisa was featured in ‘Nocturne’, the Gala opening of Victoria’s highly popular Port Fairy Spring Music Festival, performing Chopin’s ‘Polish Songs’ Op. 74. Later that year she accompanied the celebrated Seraphim Trio for a concert tour of Australia. The performances premiered an exciting new work by Australian Composer, Graham Koehne, commissioned especially for Lisa and the ensemble. Titled ‘Ringtone’, the composition drew on Lisa’s extensive and eclectic skills in all vocal styles from opera to cabaret.
For Opera Australia she most recently revisited the role of Helena for their Spring and Summer seasons, in Baz Luhrmann’s iconic production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, performances which earned her a nomination in the 2010 Green Room Awards.
Lisa continues to entrance audiences around Australia, and New Zealand, where she now resides.
Lauded worldwide for her stage and concert appearances, critics have praised Scottish mezzo Rowan Hellier for ‘the lovely richness of her tone’ (Opera Today) and her ‘focus, drama and clarity’ in performance (The Herald).
In the 2018/2019 season, Rowan will appear in Babylon and Die Liebe zu den drei Orangen at the Staatsoper unter den Linden, Berlin. On the operatic stage, Rowan has performed at Welsh National Opera as Cherubino Le nozze di Figaro, Berlin Staatsoper as Second Lady Die Zauberflöte, Annina La Traviata, Der Trommler Der Kaiser von Atlantis and Kate Pinkerton Madama Butterfly, at the Hamburg Staatsoper in Sciarrino’s Vanitas, with Theater Magdeburg and was previously a member of the Salzburg Landestheater ensemble, where her roles included Hänsel Hänsel und Gretel in the Felsenreitschule, Orfeo Orfeo ed Euridice, Zaida Il turco in Italia, Lureen Brokeback Mountain, Donna Elvira Don Giovanni and Idamante Idomeneo, under the baton of Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla. She performed the roles of Frau Grubach and Washerwoman in the world premiere of The Trial by Philip Glass at Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House. With Classical Opera, she sang Cecilio in Lucio Silla and Adriano Adriano in Siria in London and Penelope Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria with Iford Arts, conducted Christian Curnyn. Recent engagements include Wellgunde in Das Rheingold at the Royal Festival Hall conducted Vladimir Jurowski, and Zidiana in Vivaldi’s Teuzzone with La Serenissima in Venice.
Rowan appears regularly in concert with the world’s leading orchestras including BBC Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Royal Scottish National Orchestra and Stavanger Symphony Orchestra. She recently made her American debut as mezzo soloist in the Mozart Requiem with the Seattle Symphony, conducted Itzhak Perlman. Rowan performs as soloist with prominent baroque ensembles The King’s Consort, Trevor Pinnock and Friends, with whom she sang the title role Dido in Dido and Aeneas, and the Dunedin Consort. Rowan was mezzo soloist on the Dunedin Consort’s Gramophone Award-winning Mozart Requiem recording. She has made appearances at Bregenz Festival, St. Magnus International Festival and as a recital artist at the Wigmore Hall, London. Rowan is a passionate recital artist and has given concerts for Opéra de Lille, the Oxford Lieder Festival, Perth Festival of the Arts and with the Prince Consort. Rowan has appeared on numerous live radio broadcasts and recordings in Europe and for the British Broadcasting Corporation.
Her discography includes Mozart’s Requiem with the Dunedin Consort for Linn Records, The Trial by Philip Glass for Orange Mountain Music, and Honegger’s König David with the Prometheus Ensemble and Junges Ensemble Berlin for Rondeau Productions.
As a member of the International Opera Studio at Staatsoper Unter Den Linden, Berlin, under the artistic direction of Daniel Barenboim, she was the recipient of the Liz Mohn Kultur und Musikstiftung scholarship.
Johnny Herford graduated with distinction from the Royal Academy of Music Opera department in 2012, and the next year won prizes at the Kathleen Ferrier Competition and the Wigmore Hall International Song Competition. In 2014, Johnny was chosen by Philip Glass to create the role of Josef K in his opera, The Trial, in a collaboration between the Royal Opera House and Music Theatre Wales. Johnny has also performed the role of Josef K for Theater Magdeburg, making his German debut in April 2015. Recent performances have included Traveller (Curlew River) and Kuligin (Katya Kabanova) for Opéra de Dijon, Nikitsch (Boris Godunov) with Jakub Hrůša and the Philharmonia Orchestra, Emireno (Ottone) for English Touring Opera, the Scottish Opera Highlights Tour, and a return to Music Theatre Wales for an opera by Peter Eötvös, The Golden Dragon. As a recitalist, Johnny has performed at the Machynlleth, Leeds Lieder, Oxford Lieder, and the En Blanc et Noir Festivals, in repertoire including Schubert’s Winterreise and Die Schöne Müllerin, Schumann’s Myrthen, Strauss’s Acht Gedichte aus “Letzte Blätter“, and Britten’s Songs and Proverbs of William Blake. In 2016 he made his solo recital debut at the Wigmore Hall with James Baillieu in a programme of Schumann, Ravel and Judith Weir.
Thomas Hobbs is in demand with many leading baroque and early music ensembles, appearing throughout Europe and the US as a soloist in key works from the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. Hobbs works frequently with, among others, Philippe Herreweghe and his acclaimed ensemble Collegium Vocale Gent and Raphaël Pichon and his Ensemble Pygmalion. Recent concert performances include Evangelist in the Bach St Matthew Passion and St John Passion with the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, Le Concert Lorrain and Ensemble Pygmalion, arias in the Passions with the Academy of Ancient Music, CVG and Ex Cathedra, Bach B minor Mass with CVG, Le Concert Lorrain, Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Bach Akademie Stuttgart and the Freiburg Bachchor, Bach Magnificant with De Nederlandse Bachverenigning, Bach Ascension Oratorio with CVG, Bach Christmas Oratorio with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, title role in Handel Joshua with the Akademie für Alte Musik and RIAS Kammerchor, Handel Israel in Egypt with the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, Handel Messiah Le Concert Lorrain, Mozart Requiem with Dunedin Consort and Beethoven Mass in C with Stuttgart Kammerchor. Hobbs has also made debuts with the Northern Sinfonia, City of Birmingham Symphony, Royal Scottish National and Bournemouth Symphony orchestras and with renowned period ensemble Accademia Bizantina under Ottavio Dantone. Hobbs’s operatic roles include a critically acclaimed Telemachus The Return of Ulysses in a new production for English National Opera conducted by Jonathan, Apollo and Shepherd in Monteverdi’s Orfeo in semi-staged performances with Richard Egarr and the AAM, the title role in Albert Herring and Ferrando Così fan tutte. A keen recitalist, highlights include Brett Dean Winter Songs at the Cheltenham Festival, Vaughan Williams On Wenlock Edge with the Edinburgh Quartet, Schubert Die Schöne Müllerin and Schumann Liederkreis Op.39, a recital of Mozart songs at London’s Kings Place, a recital of English song and German lieder for the Festival Accademia delle Crete Senesi in Tuscany, and, most recently, Wolf songs at the Oxford Lieder Festival and a recital at the Ryedale Festival with Christopher Glynn. Hobbs’ ever-expanding discography includes Bach B minor Mass with CVG and Dunedin Consort, Bach Motets, Leipzig cantatas and Christmas Oratorio with CVG, Handel Acis et Galatea and Esther with Dunedin Consort and Beethoven Mass in C with Stuttgart Kammerchor. His most recent recordings of Handel Chandos Anthems with Stephen Layton and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Mozart Requiem with John Butt and the Dunedin Consort have been universally praised, with the latter receiving the 2014 Gramophone Award for best Choral recording. Current and future engagements include further tours with Collegium Vocale; Damon Acis and Galatea with Dunedin Consort, Bach cantatas with De Nederlandse Bachverenigning and Ensemble Pygmalion, Bach Christmas Oratorio with the Tonkünstler-Orchester Niederösterreich, Tonhalle Orchester Zürich and Le Concert Lorrain. Born in Exeter, Thomas Hobbs studied at the Royal College of Music under the tutelage of Neil Mackie, where he was awarded the RCM Peter Pears and Mason scholarships, and at the Royal Academy of Music under Ryland Davies, where he held a Kohn Bach Scholarship in addition to a full entrance scholarship. He was also awarded a Susan Chilcott Scholarship, has been made a Royal Philharmonic Society Young Artist and was an Associate Artist of the Classical Opera Company. He was also a member of the prestigous Académie at the Aix-en-Provence Festival, where he performed in concert with Louis Langrée and the Camerata Salzburg.