Rhona McKail, from Prestwick in Ayrshire, studied at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music & Drama where she gained a BA (Musical Studies) with first class honours in 2005. She recently concluded her studies on the highly coveted opera course of the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London, from where she gained both a Masters of Music with distinction and a Master of Music in Performance (Guildhall Artist), also with distinction.
Upon leaving the GSMD, she sang Anne Trulove in British Youth Opera’s acclaimed production of Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress: “Rhona McKail, playing [Anne Trulove] as a dowdy provincial girl, and singing with intensity, does as well as anyone I’ve seen or heard.” (Michael Tanner, The Spectator)
Rhona has performed in many of the UK’s most prestigious venues, including: Wigmore Hall; St. Martin in the Fields; Cadogan Hall; Barbican Hall; and the Birmingham Symphony Hall. Her concert highlights include: The Angel in Jephtha for the London Handel Festival (also broadcast on BBC Radio 3); a recital of Handel and Purcell in St Georges Hanover Square, London; and The Creation with the London Concert Choir. Broadcasts have included a programme for BBC Radio 4 with Robin Bowman and In Tune with Iain Burnside on BBC Radio 3.
Recent roles Rhona has sung include: Rezia in La Rencontre Imprévue by Gluck; Anne Who Steals in The King goes forth to France by Sallinen; Agafya in The Marriage by Martinů, all for GSMD opera; and Ortensia (cover) in Mirandolina by Martinů for Garsington Opera.
Studying with her vocal tutors Patricia MacMahon and Jane Irwin at the RSAMD, Rhona won many accolades and, since moving to London, under the tutelage of John Evans has excelled in the Maggie Teyte French Song competition winning the Miriam Lycette Scholarship of 2006. She won the Simon Fletcher Charitable Trust Scholarship in 2007 and also in the same year a Susan Chilcott Scholarship and was the winner of the Association of English Speakers and Singers Patricia Routledge National English Song Competition. Most recently she was a semi-finalist in the Kathleen Ferrier Competition and won second prize in the London Handel Festival’s Handel Singing competition.
She was a Samling Scholar in 2006, and has undertaken masterclasses with such distinguished artists as: Graham Johnson; Iain Burnside; Sir Thomas Allen; Eugene Asti; Yvonne Kenny; Catherine Bott; Malcolm Martineau; Philip Langridge and Ann Murray; François le Roux; Daniel Taylor and most recently with Sir Timothy West.