Guest Tutors | Coaches – Opera Programmes

Marcus van den Akker


Stuart Barker


Rebecca Barham


Krystian Bellière


Thomas Blunt


Robin Bowman


Rory Bremner


Sally Burgess


Iain Burnside


Brad Cohen


Jonathan Cohen


Tom Cooper


Alexander Crowe


Graeme Danby


Sophie Daneman


Wyn Davies


Mandy Demetriou


David Edwards


Rebecca Evans


Robert Fried


Ben Frost


Olivia Fuchs


Magnus Gilljam


David Gowland


Tony Gray


Karen Halliday


Leontine Hass


Giles Havergal


Philip Headlam


Johnathan Hinden


Linda Hutchison


Adam Johnson


Aurélia Jonvaux


Max Key


Mary King


Alkis Kritikos


Kelvin Lim


Joy Mammen


Norbert Meyn


Natalie Murray


Robin Newton


William Relton


Gavin Roberts


Arlene Rolph


Elizabeth Rossiter


Elizabeth Rowe


Sergey Rybin


Fiona Jane Schopf


Mikhail Shilyaev


William Vann


Andrew Watts


Justin Way


Nigel Whitmey


William Vann is establishing himself at the forefront of the current generation of young British accompanists. He was born and brought up in Bedford before reading law and taking up a choral scholarship at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, where he was taught the piano by Peter Uppard. He then studied as a pianist at the Royal Academy of Music with Malcolm Martineau and Colin Stone, graduating with distinction; in 2008 he won the Gerald Moore award for young accompanists and in October 2010 won the Great Elm Awards Accompanist Prize. He is also a past winner of the Sir Henry Richardson Scholarship, is supported by the Geoffrey Parsons Memorial Trust and held the Hodgson Fellowship in piano accompaniment at the RAM.

Recent performances have included several appearances at Wigmore Hall including the Samling Foundation’s fifteenth anniversary with Sir Thomas Allen, Malcolm Martineau, Jennifer France, Kitty Whately and Njabulo Madlala, concerts at the Aldeburgh Festival, the Sage, Gateshead, St John’s, Smith Square, Winterreise at The Forge, Camden and in Lagos, Nigeria and Lund, Sweden. He has given guest recitals for the Lennox Berkeley, Finzi and Gurney Societies, performed the music of Judith Weir at the RAM in the presence of the composer and toured a programme Dvorak and Brahms’ chamber music with the Nephele Ensemble at St David’s, Cardiff and in the Rhyl and Carlisle festivals. Forthcoming appearances include four concerts in the 2012 London English Song Festival, including a recital with James Gilchrist, a recital in the Oxford Lieder Festival, a guest recital for the John Ireland Society to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the composer’s death and several concerts across the country with mezzo-soprano Katie Bray.

In addition to his performances of standard song repertoire, he has also either commissioned or given the first performance of new English songs and song cycles by several English composers, including Christian Alexander, Joseph Atkins, Martin Eastwood, Johnny Herford, David Nield and Graham Ross (the latter two at Wigmore Hall).

He is a Samling Scholar, a Yeoman of the Worshipful Company of Musicians, a Young Songmaker and a Britten-Pears Young Artist. He also works as a conductor and repetiteur and was the assistant conductor for Bury Court Opera’s 2011 and 2012 productions of Rigoletto and La Cenerentola in association with Southbank Sinfonia. He is a coach on the Oxenfoord Summer School and in May will take up the position of Director of Music at the Royal Hospital, Chelsea.

Andrew Watts was born in Middlesex and studied at the Royal Academy of Music with Geoffrey Mitchell, and currently with Russell Smythe.

Andrew Watts’ operatic engagements include appearances with the Royal Opera Covent Garden, English National Opera, Glyndebourne Festival and Touring Operas, the Aldeburgh and Almeida Festivals and BBC Proms. Foreign engagements include Staatsoper Berlin, Komische Oper Berlin, Hamburgische Staatsoper, Bayerische Staatsoper, Theater an der Wien, Teatro La Fenice, Opéra National du Rhin, Teatro Real Madrid, Teatro Sao Carlos Lisbon, Grand Theatre de Genève, De Vlaamse Opera, Graz Opera, Stadttheater Klagenfurt, RIAS Kammerchor Berlin, Bielefeld, Australia, Canada and Mexico and the Vienna, Dresden, Bregenz, Batignano and Montepulciano Festivals. His repertoire includes Gluck’s ORPHÉE ET EURYDICE, Arsamenes XERXES, title role ORLANDO, Athamas SEMELE, Andronico TAMERLANO, title role in Leonardo Vinci’s ARTASERSE Sorceress and Second Witch DIDO AND AENEAS, Grace VENUS AND ADONIS, Ottone AGRIPPINA, Nero and Nutrice L’INCORONAZIONE DI POPPEA, Oberon A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, Orlofsky DIE FLEDERMAUS, Adschib in Henze’s L’UPUPA, Omar DEATH OF KLINGHOFFER, Bishop Baldwin GAWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT, Prince Go-Go LE GRAND MACABRE and Pleasure in Gerald Barry’s TRIUMPH OF BEAUTY. He has taken part in many world premieres including Olga Neuwirth’s BÄHLAMMS FEST and LOST HIGHWAY, James in Birtwistle’s THE LAST SUPPER and Snake Priestess THE MINOTAUR, White Rabbit and March Hare in Unsuk Chin’s ALICE IN WONDERLAND, Nuñez’ MÄRCHEN, Liza Lim’s THE NAVIGATOR, Ian McQueen’s LINE OF TERROR, Guarnieri’s MEDEA, LOST OBJECTS for Bang on a Can, Dimitri Smirnov’s THE LAMENTATIONS OF THEL, Raymond Yiu’s THE ORIGINAL CHINESE CONJUROR, Camille in Michael Finnissey’s THÉRÈSE RAQUIN, Judith Weir’s MISS FORTUNE and Ferdinand in Torsten Rasch’s THE DUCHESS OF MALFI .

Andrew Watts’ concert engagements include appearances with BBC Symphony Orchestra, London Sinfonietta, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra, Los Angeles and Cleveland Philharmonic Orchestras, Niew Ensemble, Klangforum, at the Salzburg, Lucerne, Lausanne, Cernier and Edinburgh Festivals, Vienna, New York, Budapest, Seville, Cologne, Brussels, France, Australia and Italy. Repertoire includes JUDAS MACCABEUS, JEPHTHA, SOLOMON., MESSIAH, ST. JOHN PASSION, Bach MAGNIFICAT, THE INDIAN QUEEN, Charpentier TE DEUM the world premieres of Unsuk Chin’s CANTATRIX SOPRANICA, Birtwistle’s ORPHEUS ELEGIES and THE SHADOW OF NIGHT and works by Guarnieri and Manzoni, Olga Neuwirth’s LA VIE…ULCERANT and FIVE DAILY MINIATURES. He features on recordings for ASV of Boyce’s ODE FOR ST CECILIA’S DAY and DAVID’S LAMENTATION with the Hanover Band and was heard in Sally Potter’s film ORLANDO. He broadcasts regularly and television appearances include a cameo as Kathleen Ferrier in WILLIAM AND MARY.

Engagements in the 2011/12 season include LEAR for the Hamburg Staatsoper, the world premiere of Olga Neuwirth’s THE OUTCAST in Mannheim, Judith Weir’s MISS FORTUNE for the Royal Opera, Covent Garden and concerts throughout the UK and Europe. Subsequent engagements include performances for the Komishe Oper, Berlin, La Scala, Milan and returns to Mannheim and the Royal Opera, Covent Garden.

Justin Way enjoys a reputation as a young director of significant talent and accomplishment. In his short, prolific career, he has staged 35 operas and concerts and has assisted in the direction of 48 productions in Europe, Australia and the US. He has worked with the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, the English Touring Opera, Opera Australia, Fundació del Gran Teatre del Liceu, Gran Téâtre de Genève, Covent Garden Festival, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Pinchgut Opera, Festival Les Azuriales, Czech National Opera, Opera Fountainbleau, Rome Opera, Clerkenwell Music Festival, Bregenzer Festspiele, Chicago Opera Theater, Central City Opera, Canadian Opera Company, the Minnesota Opera and Washington National Opera.

Invited to join The Royal Opera House Covent Garden for its re-opening in 1999, Mr. Way has since directed major revivals and assisted in the direction of numerous new productions for the company culminating in his ROH debut directing a new production of The Beggars Opera for the company. Recently appointed Deputy Head of Stage Directors, Mr. Way has revived Madama Butterfly (Leiser & Caurier), Il barbiere di Siviglia (Lowery), and La Cenerentola (Leiser & Caurier), he has directed several casts in La traviata for the company’s Education Department, and has directed scenework for the Royal College of Music. Productions for which he has acted as assistant director for the company include Billy Budd (Zambello), The Tempest (Cairns), Duke Bluebeard’s Castle/Erwartung (Willy Decker), Wozzeck (Warner) and Greek Passion (Poutney) which both won Olivier Awards for Best Opera Production, Don Giovanni (Zambello), Pique Dame (Zambello), Tosca (Cox/Zeffirelli), Falstaff (Vick), Il trovatore (Moshinsky), Otello (Moshinsky), Rigoletto (Metcalfe), Ariadne auf Naxos (Loy), Der Fliegende Holländer (Judge), Die Meistersinger (Vick), and Parsifal (Gruber).

Mr. Way consistently adds new productions to his directorial repertoire. Recent new projects for Mr. Way include The Beggars Opera for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden at The Linbury Theatre and a return to Chicago Opera Theater where he will stage Cavalli’s Giasone. Company debuts in the season include The Minnesota Opera in a production of La bohème, Canadian Opera Company for Carmen and Seoul Opera for Così fan tutte.

Additional new productions include his highly acclaimed production of Die Entführung aus dem Serail and Orlando for Chicago Opera Theater, his celebrated new production of Alcina for Opera Australia – staged in both Sydney and Melbourne followed by Orlando, also for Opera Australia and his much admired new production of La Traviata created for the 75th anniversary celebration of Central City Opera in the US. Other work in recent seasons includes revivals of Madama Butterfly (Leiser & Caurier) which he directed for Fundació del Gran Teatre del Liceu, Ariadne auf Naxos which he directed for Gran Téâtre de Genève, Le nozze di Figaro (McVicar) and Das Rheingold (Warner) as part of 3 cycles of The Ring directed for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden.

Assignments throughout his career have taken Mr. Way to his native Australia and Pinchgut Opera where he has staged enthusiastically celebrated new productions of Dardanus, Semele and The Fairy Queen. Other projects undertaken for ROH comprise Otello, Il trovatore and Greek Passion, new productions of Il turco in Italia (Leiser & Caurier), Das Rheingold/Die Walküre (Warner) and Faust (McVicar) on which he assisted, and a revival of Madama Butterfly (Leiser & Caurier) which he directed for the company.

Mr. Way’s early career also included new productions of Bizet’s Djamileh, performed in the round for the Festival Les Azuriales at Cap-Ferrat and at the Linbury Theatre at Covent Garden, two productions of Le nozze di Figaro: one for Opera Theatre of Lucca and the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, and the other on tour in France and Switzerland, all in addition to The Impressario and Odalisque which he directed for Opera Fountainbleau. Mr. Way enjoyed the additional privilege of directing the Covent Garden Festival’s Stephen Sondheim’s 70th birthday concert, The Remarkable Life of Mr. Kelly and Les Soirées Italiennes along with scenes for Bernard Haitink’s Farewell Gala for ROH.

Mr. Way has trained in theatre and opera houses throughout the world. He was appointed Affiliate Director of Sydney Theatre Company in 1996 and his early training includes work at the Maryinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg and the Kirov, as well as, The Australian Opera. He has acted for Vortex, Australian Theatre for Young People and Sydney University Drama Society. He holds degrees in dramatic arts from the National Institute of Dramatic Art and the University of Sydney. Mr. Way is fluent in Italian, French, and German, in addition to his native English.

Robert Fried – Acting Consultant

Director | Acting Coach

Robert Fried is an acting teacher, theatre director and course leader with extensive professional experience in Britain, Israel and Canada. His background is rooted in the Methodological approach as practised at the Drama Centre, London.

In the UK he has been Head of Acting at the Arts Educational Schools, London, principal teacher at the Oxford School of Drama and Course Leader of the MA/Postgraduate Acting course at the East 15 Acting School. Robert is reputed for his dedication to the absolute art of acting. He has been senior Acting Tutor at APS since its inception, bringing the Methodological approach to improvisation and text for both actors and singers.

Max Key trained on the National Theatre Directors’ Course and works in theatre, film and opera. 

Directing credits include:

Year 10 (Finborough Theatre – Time Out Critics’ Choice Award), Mariana Pineda (Arcola Theatre), Wilde Tales (Southwark Playhouse), Up The Royal Borough (Lyric Hammersmith), The Turn of the Screw & The Rape of Lucretia (Arcola Theatre). His short film – Preservation, starring Saskia Reeves, was presented at Palm Springs International Film Festival & BAFTA.

Assistant Directing credits include:

The Flying Dutchman (Royal Opera House), The Voysey Inheritance (Royal National Theatre) and La Bohème (Royal Albert Hall).

Max has taught and directed extensively at leading drama schools including Guildhall, LAMDA and Mountview. Directing credits include: Cymbeline, Twelfth Night, The Way of the World, Summerfolk, Clybourne Park, August Osage County, Scenes from the Big Picture, Jerusalem and The Knowledge.

Christopher Stewardson is an Australian-based Trustee of the Associated Studios London with long experience in arts administration and in higher education. Founder and Director of Australian Concert Direction in the 1970s, he moved later into a series of management roles in the tertiary sector. He has been General Manager of several faculties, including the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, and for the past five years he has served as University Secretary and Head of Governance for the University of Melbourne.

Christopher describes himself as a now-defunct-historian and is a secretly – frustrated academic. After undergraduate studies in English and Law, he completed postgraduate studies in German history with archival research in Munich, Bayreuth and London. He wrote his PhD thesis on Houston Stewart Chamberlain, the ‘turncoat son of Britain’ who was the son in law of Richard Wagner.

Christopher Stewardson brings his extensive governance experience to his role as a Trustee and quietly hopes this involvement will restimulate his passionate engagement with the arts.

Patrick Lawrence QC is one of the most in-demand professional indemnity barristers and is described as “A towering courtroom presence, who is one of the best cross-examiners in the professional negligence world.”

He acts in cases concerning solicitors, barristers, auditors, valuers, insurance brokers, financial advisers and pension consultants. Other areas of practice include sports law (he obtained an order restraining a jockey from riding in the Derby on the eve of the race!) and aspects of public law, in particular relating to political activity and funding.

Patrick is delighted to be a Trustee of the Associated Studios London.

Rosalind Plowright is one of the most celebrated artists of our time. Her career spans more than 35 years. She was acclaimed as one of the world’s great spinto sopranos specialising in roles such as Medée, Alceste and Norma as well as the great Verdi and Puccini heroines. Rosalind Plowright has sung at nearly all the international opera houses such as the Royal Opera, Covent Garden, Teatro alla Scala in Milan, the Paris Opera, Vienna State Opera, Bavarian State Opera in Munich, the Grand Theatre de Genève, and at the Arena di Verona. Her colleagues include all the most praised operatic stars of the time. Her American debut was alongside Jose Carreras in a concert at the Philadelphia Orchestra under Riccardo Muti and they also sang Andrea Chenier at Covent Garden and recorded La Forza del Destino for Deutsche Grammophon (which won best opera recording from Gramophone). With Placido Domingo she has performed Il Trovatore at Covent Garden and recorded the opera with him for Deutsche Grammophon for which she was personally awarded the Prix Fondation Fanny Heldy. With Luciano Pavarotti she performed Aida at Covent Garden and a gala concert for 25,000 at the Arena of Verona. Among the many conductors with whom she has worked are Giulini, Gavazzeni, Patane, Muti, Abbado, Mehta, Sinopli, Sawallisch, Haitink, Pappano, Ozawa and Bychkov.

Rosalind Plowright entered the dramatic mezzo repertoire in 1999 with roles such as Amneris in Aida, the Principessa in Adriana Lecouvreur, La Zia Principessa in Suor Angelica and Klytämnestra in Elektra Madame de Croissy in Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmelites. Plowright won special praise as the Kostelnicka in Janacek’s Jenufa. She made her Metropolitan Opera debut in this role. Her many recordings also include Mary Stuart, Otello, Aida and Hansel & Gretel  for the Opera in English series for Chandos; Elijah for Chandos, La Vestale for Orfeo, Contes d’Hoffmann for EMI and Mahler 2nd Symphony for Deutsche Grammophon. Her DVD’s include her performances of Il Trovatore from Verona, Suor Angelica from La Scala, Hansel & Gretel from the Metropolitan Opera and Not the Messiah. (He’s a very naughty boy)with the Monty Python team at the Royal Albert hall. Her forthcoming appearances are in Japan (Herodias), Covent Garden (La Contessa de Coigny and her first Kabanicha in Katya Kabanova), Lyon and Vienna (Mrs Sedley). In May 2014 she launched her first recital album, La Belle Dame Sans Merci.

Rosalind Plowright was awarded the OBE in 2007 for her services to music.

Douglas Hansell

Douglas recently appeared as Charles Clarke in the critically acclaimed production of Titanic at Charing Cross Theatre.

Theatre credits include: The Wharf Revue (Sydney Theatre Company), Torvald Helmer in A Doll’s House (Seymour Centre, Sydney), C.S. Lewis in the Australian premiere of Freud’s Last Session (Theatre Royal, Sydney), When Blair Had Bush and Bunga (Edinburgh Festival), Orsino in Twelfth Night (Sydney Festival), Algernon in The Importance of Being Earnest, Macbeth, Lady Windamere’s Fan (Darlinghurst Theatre Company,), Oedipus Rex (Sydney Festival, dir. Peter Sellars), Variations (Hayes Theatre), Going Bush (Bush Theatre, Upstairs) Neighbourhood Watch, We’re Going On A Bear Hunt (Ensemble Theatre, Sydney) Das Kaltë Kind: The Cold Child (Griffin Theatre Company), Emily Eyefinger (Monkey Baa Theatre Company), Fatboy, The Temperamentals (New Theatre Sydney), Shakespeare On Trial (National Tour), Actors at Work (Bell Shakespeare Company).

Television & film credits include: Critical (SkyTV, UK), The Code (ABC), Underbelly (Channel 9), All Saints, Home and Away (Channel 7), 36 Squad(Breakaway TV), Scheyville, (AFTRS), Chocolate Cake (Project Greenlight). He also recently voiced the commentary for the 2015 Special Re-release of the 1959 Gregory Peck classic, On the Beach.
As a singer, he has appeared in concert with Sydney Symphony Orchestra in Queen of Spades, Harmonium, Symphony of Psalms, in cabaret and as a regular artist with The Song Company.
Douglas is an acting graduate of the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) and has also studied with renowned acting coach Larry Moss.
He is a 2013 recipient of The Mike Walsh Fellowship for Outstanding Young Talent.

Leontine Hass – CEO

Founding Principal | Vocal Coach
Leontine Hass is an internationally renowned Vocal Coach and Principal of the Associated Studios London Performing Arts Academy.

Leontine Hass is currently vocal coach for Motown at The Shaftesbury Theatre London. She has served as vocal coach to Matt Henry (Lola in Kinky Boots West End), Alice Stokoe (Sophie in Mamma Mia, West End), Gloria Onitiri (Lead in The Bodyguard & Hair, West End), Claire Sweeney (Tell Me on a Sunday) and many other leads and swings in the West End, national and international tours of productions such as Thriller-Live, Oliver!, Carousel, Parade, Tell Me on a Sunday, The Lion King, The Phantom of the Opera, Witches of Eastwick, Nine, The Wizard of Oz, Ragtime, Sweeney Todd, Cats, Sister Act, We Will Rock You, Footloose, Wicked, The Sound of Music, Ghost, Hairspray, Porgy and Bess, The Bodyguard, Jesus Christ Superstar, Jersey Boys, Barnum, Miss Saigon, Book of Mormon, Mamma Mia, In the Heights, The Color Purple, Memphis, Spamalot, Les Miserables, Miss Saigon, Aladdin, Chicago, The Pyjama Game, Kinky Boots and the upcoming production of Dreamgirls.

Leontine coaches members of The Swingle Singers, Collabro, The Magnets, The Sons of Pitches and classical singers with ENO, Welsh National Opera and ROH, as well as Pop/Rock/Jazz singers. Leontine was the Vocal Coach for shows including the London premiere of Bernarda Alba the Musical, and currently the a cappella hit, ‘Gobsmacked’.

Leontine teaches workshops and lectures internationally on singing, voice and performance. She rehabilitates voices after surgery, or as surgery prevention. She has taught at leading Music & Drama Schools including GSA Conservatoire, the Oxford School of Drama, Mountview, LSMT, YMT, The Brit School, La Salle (Singapore), the Queensland Conservatorium, Centre Stage and The VCA (Melbourne).

Leontine has acted as vocal consultant to various music management/production companies, including ITV and the BBC. Leontine is vocal coach for ‘The Voice’ for BBC TV. She was featured as a mentor/vocal coach on the Gareth Malone show, ‘The Naked Choir’, for BBC2 and will also be involved with Series 2. She is a regular columnist at and for The Stage newspaper. She is a contributor to ‘The Singer’s Complete Guide to Vocal Health’ (Oxford Uni. Press), and advisor/contributor to ‘The Ultimate Guide to Singing’ published by TC Helicon in 2014.

Having originally trained as a classical singer (BA, Melb. Uni, BMus. Kings College London, Dip. RAM), Leontine has performed as a singer and actress in concert, theatre and TV.

Leontine is the CEO/Founding Principal of the Associated Studios Performing Arts Academy London, which she founded in 2007, then based at The Royal Academy of Music. Associated Studios provides full-time and part-time training and professional development in Musical Theatre and Opera ( The Board of Directors includes Rory Bremner (Chair), Patrick Lawrence QC and Dr Christopher Stewardson. Patrons include Sir Tim Rice, Jeremy Irons, Jeremy Herrin, Timothy West and Scott Alan.

Leontine is represented by Lesley Duff at Diamond Management.

Leontine Hass – CEO

Founding Principal | Vocal Coach

Leontine Hass is an internationally renowned Vocal Coach and Principal of the Associated Studios London Performing Arts Academy.

Leontine Hass is currently vocal coach for Motown at The Shaftesbury Theatre London. She has served as vocal coach to Matt Henry (Lola in Kinky Boots West End), Alice Stokoe (Sophie in Mamma Mia, West End), Gloria Onitiri (Lead in The Bodyguard & Hair, West End), Claire Sweeney (Tell Me on a Sunday) and many other leads and swings in the West End, national and international tours of productions such as Thriller-Live, Oliver!, Carousel, Parade, Tell Me on a Sunday, The Lion King, The Phantom of the Opera, Witches of Eastwick, Nine, The Wizard of Oz, Ragtime, Sweeney Todd, Cats, Sister Act, We Will Rock You, Footloose, Wicked, The Sound of Music, Ghost, Hairspray, Porgy and Bess, The Bodyguard, Jesus Christ Superstar, Jersey Boys, Barnum, Miss Saigon, Book of Mormon, Mamma Mia, In the Heights, The Color Purple, Memphis, Spamalot, Les Miserables, Miss Saigon, Aladdin, Chicago, The Pyjama Game, Kinky Boots and the upcoming production of Dreamgirls.

Leontine coaches members of The Swingle Singers, Collabro, The Magnets, The Sons of Pitches and classical singers with ENO, Welsh National Opera and ROH, as well as Pop/Rock/Jazz singers. Leontine was the Vocal Coach for shows including the London premiere of Bernarda Alba the Musical, and currently the a cappella hit, ‘Gobsmacked’.

Leontine teaches workshops and lectures internationally on singing, voice and performance. She rehabilitates voices after surgery, or as surgery prevention. She has taught at leading Music & Drama Schools including GSA Conservatoire, the Oxford School of Drama, Mountview, LSMT, YMT, The Brit School, La Salle (Singapore), the Queensland Conservatorium, Centre Stage and The VCA (Melbourne).

Leontine has acted as vocal consultant to various music management/production companies, including ITV and the BBC. Leontine is vocal coach for ‘The Voice’ for BBC TV. She was featured as a mentor/vocal coach on the Gareth Malone show, ‘The Naked Choir’, for BBC2 and will also be involved with Series 2. She is a regular columnist at and for The Stage newspaper. She is a contributor to ‘The Singer’s Complete Guide to Vocal Health’ (Oxford Uni. Press), and advisor/contributor to ‘The Ultimate Guide to Singing’ published by TC Helicon in 2014.

Having originally trained as a classical singer (BA, Melb. Uni, BMus. Kings College London, Dip. RAM), Leontine has performed as a singer and actress in concert, theatre and TV.

Leontine is the CEO/Founding Principal of the Associated Studios Performing Arts Academy London, which she founded in 2007, then based at The Royal Academy of Music. Associated Studios provides full-time and part-time training and professional development in Musical Theatre and Opera ( The Board of Directors includes Rory Bremner (Chair), Patrick Lawrence QC and Dr Christopher Stewardson. Patrons include Sir Tim Rice, Jeremy Irons, Jeremy Herrin, Timothy West and Scott Alan.

Leontine is represented by Lesley Duff at Diamond Management.

Mitch Leow

Mitch originates from Singapore, and attended MPA (Millennium Performing Arts) on the Stephen Mear scholarship from the directors. He graduated with a Professional Diploma and was a recipient of the Millennium Contemporary Cup for excellence in dance and choreography.

Theatre credits: 

“Madam Butterfly” (Directed by Anthony Minghella – ENO 2006 premiere and 2013 revival), “Turandot” (ROH – 2005), “Be Mine” (Directed by Drew McConie – The Place), Barnum (Chichester Festival Theatre), Disney’s “The Lion King” (Lyceum Theatre), Cameron Mackintosh’s “Miss Saigon” (Prince Edward Theatre)

Film/TV credits: 

“TV Land” (Directed by Mitch Sebastian and Dick Lee), Olivier Awards Ceremony (With the company of The Lion King and Miss Saigon), “War” (Directed by Nilesh Bell-Gorsia), and various EPK footage with the company of The Lion King, Barnum, Miss Saigon and Aladdin.

Mitch is currently appearing in Disney’s “Aladdin” at the Prince Edward Theatre as Ensemble and Fight Captain for the company.


Mary Hill

Senior Opera Consultant | Coach

From Birmingham, Mary studied piano, organ and viola, gained both ARCM and LRAM piano diplomas and played with the CBSO before going to Oxford University. A founder member of Schola Cantorum there, she also sang with the Elizabethan Singers, Schutz and Monteverdi Choirs in London and studied at the London Opera Centre, where she became a member of staff. As an accompanist she gave concerts in all the major London venues, played for the BBC and toured with Intimate Opera.

She founded her own company, Abbey Opera, as an ILEA education class. Over a period of 40 years it acquired its own orchestra under Antony Shelley, and became a major force for young professional and amateur singers wishing to showcase their work. It staged a wide variety of known and lesser-known repertoire in and around London and for the Camden and Edinburgh festivals. It visited Rennes in France, and gave major concerts at St. John’s Smith Square, the Bloomsbury Theatre, British Museum, and collaborated three times in the Barbican with Chelsea Opera. It gave British premiers of operas by Samuel Barber, Virgil Thomson and Robert Ward, and also Pfitzner’s “Palestrina.” Many performances were broadcast on Radio London, and in its final ten years Abbey Opera became an accredited Diploma Course for the University of London.

Mary has also worked as a coach for Glyndebourne , Welsh National Opera, Kent Opera, Opera Rara, Northern Ireland Opera Trust, the Royal Opera (Stockholm), and Virginia Opera (USA). She was Director of Opera Studies at the Royal Academy of Music when the Britten Theatre was opened, coached regularly for the National Opera Studio, and ran the postgraduate opera courses at Trinity College of Music. She has recently retired after 27 years at the Royal Academy of Music as Opera Co-ordinator and Chief Coach, and has been awarded an Hon.ARAM for outstanding contribution to the opera department.

Alkis Kritikos worked as an Actor at The Connaught Theatre Worthing, The Royal Court Theatre, The Half Moon Theatre, Theatro Technis, The Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, The Thorndike Theatre, The Oxford Playhouse, The Belgrade Theatre, The Library Theatre Manchester, The Sheffield Crucible, The Place Theatre, and The Shaw Theatre (West End) – where he played the lead part of Esteban Trueba in Isabelle Allende’s The House Of The Spirits.

Films include: For Your Eyes Only, A Woman for All Time, Black Sheep, Romeo of the Spirits, Red Thursday nominated as Best Supporting Actor at the Thessaloniki Film Festival), Akamas (Shown at the Venice Film Festival, and won The Best Narrative Feature award at the Los Angeles Greek Film Festival in 2007), Legend of the Golden Fish Cake, Dogs, Cats And Rats (2010-2011), and most recently Father Cyclop in Wrath Of The Titans in 3D (2012), directed by Jonathan Liebesman for Warner Bros pictures.

Alkis Kritikos has also worked extensively on Television, including: The Cuckoo Waltz, One Chance in Four, Sexton Blake, Connie, Watch All Night, The Dark Side of the Sun, Rockliffe’s Babies, Thin Air, Vote for Them, Rumpole of the Bailey, the Gingerbread Girl, and the title role in The Greek Interpreter in the series The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. Most recently he played Nikitas a lead role in LIMNI (The Lake), a 45 part TV series for RIK The Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation (2010-2011).

He made his directing debut with Tennessee William’s in In the Bar of a Tokyo Hotel at The New End Theatre, followed by Miss Julie (Sir Richard Steele), The Collector (Argonaut Theatre Company), Beckett’s Theatre I and II (British Premier and National Tour), In Other Beasts The Best (devised piece on Greek Myths, Theatro Technis), Debbie Issit’s The Woman Who Cooked Her Husband and Lee Blessing’s Two Rooms (London Repertory Company), the Musicals An Evening with Carmen Miranda by Carmen Gomez (Jermyn Street Theatre), and Sharp Practice at the Wimbledon Studio Theatre. Alkis has also directed for The National Theatre of Cyprus (THOK), Moliere’s Tartuffe in Cyprus and The Frog and The Lionfairy in the UK, and The Dinner (To Gevma) at the Skala Theatre, Cyprus. Alkis Kritikos spent a year at the Royal Court where he assisted on productions by David Hare, Stephen Frears, Athol Fugard and with Jim Sharman on the original production of The Rocky Horror Show. He has also taught at a number of Drama Schools, and has been a Tudor/Director for theatre design students at The University of the Arts, Wimbledon.

Other Directing work includes the critically acclaimed cult hit musical All Cloned Up by Mike Bennett, which enjoyed runs at the Bloomsbury and Westminster Theatres (London West End), Wimbledon Studio Theatre, The Latchmere, a 4 week season at the Edinburgh Festival, and off West End at the Kings Head Theatre. All Cloned Up was also the chosen gala performance for the Athinorama Greek Theatre Awards in Athens, also Roast Beef at the Riverside Studios in London, as part of The Greek Cultural Olympiad. He recently directed the World Premiere of the Glam Rock Musical Blok Busta (GlamBusta), at the New Players Theatre in London’s West End.

Tom directs theatre, musical theatre and opera. As a staff director he has worked for the Young Vic Theatre, English National Opera, the Haymarket Basingstoke, Scottish Opera, and extensively for Opera North. Tom was a reader for the Bush Theatre and the Royal Court Young Writers Programme and read musical libretti for the Donmar Warehouse, and was Literary Associate (musical theatre) for the Finborough Theatre, London. His recent directing includes Gianni Schicchi (Opera Bohemia, Scottish tour); La Boheme (Clyde Opera); La Traviata (Heritage Opera, touring); the European premiere of Adam Guettel’s Myths and Hymns (Finborough Theatre, London); the first ever revival of N. C. Hunter’s play A Day by the Sea (also Finborough Theatre, London); Henry IV parts one and two (York Shakespeare Project); the devised L’Antologia di Spoon River and Stefano Benni’s play Astaroth (Rapallo Festival, Italy); Judith (Pleasance Theatre, London); Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me (Upstairs at the Gatehouse).

He has also adapted and directed Brecht’s The Visions of Simone Machard (Hackney Empire and tour) and Euripides The Trojan Women (Edinburgh Festival Fringe). Drama school directing include A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Oxford School of Drama at Blenheim Palace); Fuente Ovejuna (Arts University Bournemouth); Little Women: the musical and Howard Goodall’s musical Girlfriends (University of Cumbria); The Wedding Singer (SLP College). He is currently Programme Leader for the BA Musical Theatre at GAMTA (Glasgow and Cardiff). For GAMTA he has directed The World Goes Round, Sunshine on Leith, A New Brain, Flora the Red Menace, 9 to 5, Wonderland, Oklahoma, Just So, and two devised musicals, Doors: the Great Exam Cabaret and A Fistful of Glitter (based on the music of Pink).

The English bass, Graeme Danby, was educated at the Royal Academy of Music in London.

Graeme Danby has performed at several of the world’s leading opera houses, notably the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and the English National Opera. He is known for his strong, dramatic portrayals of characters in the basso profondo repertoire.

In 2003, his rich and resonant bass was heard to advantage in the role of Lorenzo in I Capuletti ed I Montecchi conducted by Sir Richard Bonynge. This appearance was one amongst many in major roles for English National Opera, which include Don Basilio in Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia; Dulcamara in Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore; Somnus in George Frideric Handel’s Semele; Quince in Benjamin Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Collatinus in B. Britten’s Rape of Lucretia, Poo-Bah in Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado; Sarastro in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte; Bartolo (Le nozze di Figaro); Sacristan in Puccini’s Tosca; Pistol in Verdi’s Falstaff and Ribbing in Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera.

Graeme Danby performs regularly at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. In Spring 2005, he sang the major role of Charrington in Lorin Maazel’s Covent Garden commission of 1984, a part written especially for him. In 2006, he sang the role of Sacristano in Covent Garden’s production of Tosca, alongside Angela Gheorghiu, Marcello Alvarez and Bryn Terfel. In 2007, he took the role of Gonzalo in Thomas Adès’ The Tempest. Further roles include the Marquis d’Obigny in La traviata, Billy Jackrabbit in La fanciulla del West and Second Armed Man in Die Zauberflöte.

Further British engagements also include Bartolo in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro for Opera North and Garsington Opera; Collatinus in B. Britten’s Rape of Lucretia at Buxton Festival; and Sacristan in Tosca, Bosun in Billy Budd, Benedict in La Vie Parisienne and Masetto in Don Giovanni for Scottish Opera. In the 2002-2003 season, Graeme Danby made his Glyndebourne debut as Antonio in Le nozze di Figaro, subsequently recording the role for Chandos Records. He also made his debut at the Gran Teatro del Liceu, Barcelona in the role of Brag in Purcell’s Fairy Queen.

European engagements have included Brag in Purcell’s The Fairy-Queen at the Gran Teatro del Liceu, Barcelona; Somnos in Semele. In 2003-2004 season, Graeme Danby made his debut at the Opera National du Rhin, Strasbourg in the role of Xuthus in Param Vir’s Ion. In 2006, he made his debut with De Vlaamse Opera in the role of Somnus. He returned to the company for their 2007-2008 season in the role of Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro. He sang at La Scala, Milan as Snug in B. Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Further roles in 2007 and 2008 included Sarastro, Poo-Bah, Zuniga, the Doctor in Punch and Judy and Czar Ivan in Candide with English National Opera and Billy Jackrabbit in La Fanciulla del West with the Royal Opera Covent Garden. In 2009, Graeme Danby made his debut at La Scala in the role of Snug. Further recent engagements have included Theatre Manager in The Gambler at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and Swallow in Peter Grimes with De Vlaamse Opera.

Graeme Danby appears regularly on the concert platform throughout the UK at prestigious venues, including: the Royal Albert Hall (L.v. Beethoven Sympony No. 9; Verdi Requiem), the Royal Festival Hall (Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 8) and the Bridgewater Hall Manchester (Iolanthe), and with leading orchestras including: The London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra and the Royal National Scottish Orchestra. He broadcasts regularly for the British Broadcasting Corporation.

Olivia Fuchs was brought up in Germany and studied at London University and the Drama Studio, London. She started her work as a director in theatre and ran her own company, but now predominantly directs opera. Recent productions include Ines de Castro by James MacMillan (Scottish Opera), Madama Butterfly (Oviedo, Spain) and Der Rosenkavalier (Magdeburg).

Other work: Rusalka (Opera Australia – Helpmann award Best Opera, Green Room awards Best Opera/Best Director); Pelleas et Melisande (Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires); Midsummer Night’s Dream (Royal Opera House); The Marriage of Figaro (English National Opera); RusalkaDon Giovanni, Pied Piper (Opera North); Die Zauberflöte (Oviedo); Madama Butterfly (Magdeburg); Rigoletto, La Traviata and Il Trovatore (Danish National Opera), Hänsel und Gretel, Magic Flute, The Rake’s Progress, Maynight, Cherevichki, Osud/Sarka (Garsington Opera); Norma, Lucia di Lammermoor, Pelleas et Melisande, Kat’a Kabanova, Jenufa, Fidelio, Macbeth and Luisa Miller (Opera Holland Park); Saul (Buxton Festival); Giustino (London Handel Festival); The Turn of the Screw (Brighton Festival); The Italian Songbook (Linbury Studio); Apollo et Hyacinthus(Classical Opera) and the World Premiere of The Maids by John Lunn (ENO/Lyric Theatre).

For Trinity Laban she has directed Giustino by Handel and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. She very much enjoys working with young singers and regularly gives workshops for the ROH Young Artists program, the National Opera Studio and Associated Studios.

Future work: Iris (Opera Holland Park), Der Rosenkavalier (WNO), Faust (Magdeburg), Alcina (Royal Academy of Music).

Magnus Gilljam was born in Sweden and raised on a diet of IKEA furniture and ABBA songs. He came to the UK in 1999 for post-graduate studies in accompaniment at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and is now based in London working as a freelance pianist and musical director.

Magnus performs regularly in song recitals around the UK and Europe, and works as a repetiteur and vocal coach. Musical direction credits include English Pocket Opera’s family adaption of Rossini’s La Cenerentola at the Cochrane and Unicorn Theatres in London, The Full Monty at the New Players Theatre, State Fair at the Trafalgar Studios, Just So at the Tabard Theatre, and the critically acclaimed productions of HMS Pinafore and The Pajama Game at the Union Theatre.

Other recent credits include Aladdin at the Buxton Opera House, AMD for I Do! I Do! at Vienna’s English Theatre and an appearance in concert with Katherine Jenkins for BBC Wales.

Karen Halliday trained and worked as a singer, dancer, actress and sports injury therapist.

As a performer, she worked in a wide variety of styles and media (opera, ballet, musicals, film, tv, plays, voiceovers, cabaret, photographic etc).

Most of Karen Halliday’s work now focuses on teaching, choreography, medical and corporate roleplay.

As a teacher, Karen wants to share the joy of movement and the importance of physical awareness/safety for performance, expression and longevity in the business (and life!).

Award winning Dutch-Australian Baritone and specialist voice trainer Marcus van den Akker, was born in Ossendrecht – The Netherlands. He immigrated to Australia as a teenager and currently resides in the UK. He is a versatile artist with a wide and varied interest in the vocal repertoire. He is a consummate performer of recital and oratorio genres, which have included radio broadcasts in the Netherlands and Australia. His various Operatic roles have included performances in Australia, United Kingdom, The Netherlands and Italy.

Marcus has a strong passion and talent for training and guiding classical singers. His teaching has at its foundation an holistic approach, with a thorough working knowledge of modern vocal pedagogy. He works in collaboration and in consultation with a team of other distinguished specialist professionals whenever possible. He has a direct and meticulous teaching style, strongly evolved through the ideals of the Bel- Canto school (indirectly Celletti), Jo Estill, Janice Chapman and Raymond Connell, as well as his movement studies of Alexander Technique and Rudolf Laban.

Marcus van den Akker runs a highly successful private studio in central London and is currently contracted by The Guildhall School of Music – London. He held teaching positions at Westminster School in London, the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School for gifted musicians and dancers, The Melbourne University-Conservatorium of Music and The Victorian College of the Arts School of Music in Australia. He is requested for examination, audition and consultation panels.

Stuart Barkergrew up in Ongar and studied Physics with Astrophysics at Royal Holloway, University of London.

He is Artistic Director of The Minotaur Music Theatre for whom he has directed S’vitri, The Waiter’s Revenge, Hin und zurück, A Man of Feeling, L’occasione fa il ladro, Riders to the Sea, The Bear,Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte, Don Giovanni, Dido and Aeneas, Cox and Box, La bohème,The Wandering Scholar, La Cenerentola andRita.

Productions for other companies include Stephen Oliver’s Euridice (British Youth Opera at the Peacock Theatre), La voix humaine (Kypria International Festival, Cyprus), Suor Angelica and L’enfant et les sortilèges (Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama), L’elisir d’amore (British Youth Opera at the Anghiari Festival), Les contes d’Hoffmann, The Rake’s Progress, Samson, Aida, Eugene Onegin,Cavalleria rusticana, Pagliacci, Die Zauberflöte, Trouble in Tahiti, The Beggar’s Opera, The Pirates of Penzance, Iolanthe, HMS Pinafore, Merrie England, To the Edge, andScenes from the Savoy as well as revivals of Carmen (English Touring Opera) and Don Pasquale (European Chamber Opera). Musicals include Alice in Wonderland and Hermes.

He has directed opera scenes for the Royal College of Music, Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Birmingham Conservatoire, British Youth Opera at the Anghiari Festival and Birkbeck’s Opera Diploma Course.

Stuart has a long and continuing association with the work of British Youth Opera.

Rebecca’s work as a soloist has seen her in concerto performances of Bach, Mozart and Shostakovich in Sweden, Poland and the United Kingdom.  As an accompanist she has  worked with international mezzo Katarina Karneus, baritone mark Stone, cellist Jan-Erik Gustaffson and clarinetist Chen Halevi.

She has been the Assistant Artistic Director of the Carlscrona Chamber Music Festival (Sweden) since 2004 and is the Artistic Director and founder of the Bedford Park Recital Series.  Rebecca has also served as advisor to Altara Classic Records, where she assisted Maestro Andre Previn on their recording of his songs sung by soprano Barbara Bonney.

Krystian Bellière is a versatile artist based in London working as a pianist, conductor and vocal coach. As a soloist he made highly acclaimed débuts at the Wigmore Hall, the Purcell Room, St. John’s Smith Square, Cadogan Hall, St. Martin-in-the-Fields and Steinway Hall, London and he has performed throughout the UK, Germany, Italy, Japan, Israel, East and South Africa. Radio broadcasts include live on BBC Radio 3.

He made his début at the Wigmore Hall directing Viktor Ullmann’s opera Der Kaiser von Atlantis from the keyboard, subsequently touring nationally. In addition he has directed performances of Le Nozze di FigaroCosì fan tutteLa BohèmeHänsel und Gretel, Werther, Der Vogelhändler and the musicals Sweet Charity,

My Fair Lady and Guys&Dolls. He has worked as a pianist and conductor on over thirty productions in Germany at the opera houses of Wiesbaden, Nürnberg and Freiburg. An alumnus of the National Opera Studio in London, he also works as a repetiteur for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, as a coach on the Jette Parker Young Artists’ Programme, for English National Opera, Grange Park Opera, the Classical Opera Company and he enjoys partnering some of the UK’s finest singers in recital.

Born in London, Krystian Bellière comes from a family of English, French and German origins. In his teens he concentrated on composition and was taught piano by Ronald Smith before being awarded a scholarship at Christ Church, Oxford where he gained a First in Music. Further study followed at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London where he majored in conducting, studying in master classes with Michael Tilson Thomas and where his piano teacher was James Gibb. Subsequently he undertook intensive courses with Murray Perahia, Alfred Brendel and Stephen Kovacevich.

Chorus master of Glyndebourne from 2006 to 2009, British conductor Thomas Blunt recently took up the position of Assistant Conductor to Vladimir Jurowski and the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

He was born in 1977, and studied ‘cello and conducting at the Junior Royal Academy of Music before taking up an organ scholarship at Trinity College, Cambridge. After graduation he furthered his studies in orchestral conducting under Neil Thomson at the Royal College of Music in London where he prepared orchestras for visiting conductors including Bernard Haitink, Andrew Litton, Gianandrea Noseda, Roger Norrington and Vasily Petrenko.

In 2007 Thomas Blunt made his conducting debut with Glyndebourne in L’elisir d’amore for Glyndebourne on Tour, and has since conducted Falstaff and La Cenerentola for GOT. Throughout his tenure as Glyndebourne chorus master he conducted (as part of the Jerwood Chorus Development Scheme) members of the Glyndebourne Chorus in opera scenes with a chamber orchestra formed from musicians of the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

During this same period Blunt assisted conductors including Music Director Vladimir Jurowski, Maurizio Benini, Douglas Boyd, Richard Egarr, and Edward Gardner. He also collaborated with Ji?í B?lohlávek, Mark Elder, Ivàn Fischer, and Kazushi Ono.

Highlights of activities away from Glyndebourne have included the World Première of Ghosts – a Royal Opera House commissioned ballet by Dave Maric at the Linbury Studio Theatre and an invitation from Vladimir Jurowski to conduct the banda in Das klagende Lied for the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s first public performance to open their first concert season at the newly refurbished Royal Festival Hall.

Other past engagements include performances of The Rape of Lucretia and Così fan tutte at the Benjamin Britten International Opera School, having also assisted Michael Rosewell; work on The Knot Garden at the Cantiere Internazionale d’Arte di Montepulciano, and a performance of Gounod’s Romeo et Juliette for British Youth Opera. Symphonic work includes performances with the South Bank Sinfonia, Tchaikovsky Symphony No.4 with the Cambridge University Chamber Orchestra and he also worked with Ivàn Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra, in Budapest, on Mahler Symphony No.6. In 2010 he worked as an assistant conductor for Opera North on Rusalka and Così fan tutte, and conducted The Rape of Lucretia at the Arcola Theatre, London, as part of its Grimeborn Gestival.

In addition to his work with Jurowski and the LPO future engagements include Italian Girl in London by Cimarosa for Bampton Classical Opera, performances at the Buxton Festival, St John’s Smith Square, and the Queen Elizabeth Hall, a collaboration with the Old Vic, performances of Bruckner’s Mass No. 2 in E minor in Sao Paolo with the LPO and the chorus of the Sao Paolo Symphony Orchestra, a concert with the English Chamber Orchestra, and his LPO debut at the Royal Festival Hall.

Robin Bowman’s international career as an accompanist and chamber-music pianist spans more than thirty years; he has numbered Gérard Souzay, Dawn Upshaw, Henry Herford, Lynne Dawson, Penelope Mackay, Richard Jackson and Katarina Jovanovic among his many performing partnerships. His favourite press notice, for a Wigmore Hall recital with Gérard Souzay, tells of ‘Robin Bowman’s discreetly supportive and infinitely imaginative accompaniments’.

He was a coach for Glyndebourne Festival Opera, and French Consultant for the London National Opera Studio since its inception in the mid-1970s. Educated initially as a musicologist under Thurston Dart and then as a Lied-accompanist under Walther Gruner, Robin gained his unique depth of experience in French vocal repertoire from work as assistant to Pierre Bernac, the great French baritone and authority on singing in French for whom Poulenc wrote more than half of his songs. Much of this experience took place at the Académie Internationale de Musique Maurice Ravel, a summer school where latterly, during an association spanning a quarter of a century, he also organised additionally a piano accompaniment course. For twelve years he gave summer classes at the Académie Internationale d’Eté de Nice, and continues working for two British Summer Schools – the Abingdon Solo Singing School of which he is co-director, and Oxenfoord International, and has taught and performed extensively in Japan. He has experience as an international jury member, including as jury president, for competitions and concours in both vocal and keyboard fields.

Robin’s principal piano teachers were Thomas Rajna and Alan Rowlands, the latter sharing with Robin many of his insights as an enthusiast for – and later, teacher of – Alexander Technique. Robin’s own technical insights as performer and teacher draw additionally on concepts from Feldenkrais and Trager techniques, educational kinesiology, autogenics, and Inner Game principles. Often as a result of having worked with him in vocal repertoire classes, many of the Guildhall School’s postgraduate accompanying course students then chose to take some of their principal study lessons with him. He still finds time for a small number of chamber concerts with instrumentalists as well as with singers.

From 1971 until 2008 Robin Bowman taught French vocal repertoire at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, and at the London National Opera Studio from its inception a few years later. His numerous broadcasts and his discography as accompanist consist mainly of English language and French language repertoire – in particular a two-volume CD of songs by Charles Ives with the baritone Henry Herford which gained a British Music Retailers Association Award. An English song recording with Nancy Argenta and Roderick Williams was issued in 2001 and gained a five-star review in the BBC Music Magazine. Partnering Henry Herford when the latter won first prize in the International American Music Competition at Carnegie Hall, New York, opened up an extensive American dimension to Robin’s work, including recordings, broadcasts and teaching at Tanglewood. As a teacher, Robin is interested in exploring and cultivating the sources of imaginative interpretation for singers and pianists, about which he has written in the ‘style and interpretation for singing teachers’ section of the Incorporated Society of Musicians/University of Reading Music Teaching in Private Practice initiative, and also more extensively in as yet unpublished material compiled during a 2007 term of sabbatical leave granted for this purpose by the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, thus being able to give back to tomorrow’s performers the essence of his own decades of experience in imaginative musical performance.

Sally Burgess ARCM FRCM – Director, Mezzo-soprano, Teacher and Mentor.

Sally was born in Durban, South Africa and came to London in her teens. She studied at the RCM with Marion Studholme, then later privately with Josephine Veasey.

Sally’s teaching is holistically based, including work on breathing, the psychology of performance, exploring text, imagination and Alexander technique, and offering day workshops as part of her studio. She works with established singers as well as those at the beginning of their studies.

Vocal Professor at the RCM for 10 years, she also teaches stagecraft and directs opera scenes.

Sally works with singers worldwide giving masterclasses and workshops last year in Russia, South Africa, and France.
She heads the Young Singers Programme for Les Azuriales Opera Festival, Nice, and in collaboration with London Gates Education in Moscow.

She works with singers at the Royal Opera House on the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme, Co-Opera Company, and with British Youth Opera. Sally has a close relationship with Live Music Now, fronting their vocal masterclass series in the aLuMNi programme. She adjudicates and examines for all UK conservatoires and is a member of the British Voice Association.

Sally Burgess has made some of the most exciting operatic roles her own. The Sunday Times described her as “The greatest exponent of Carmen I have ever seen”. She went on to perform Carmen worldwide, first at ENO where she sang the role over a span of 20 years in several different productions, later at The Met, Berlin, Munich, Paris, Bregenz, Portland Oregon, Opera North, NZ, and in concert.

Her operatic debut was Zerlina Don Giovanni with ENO with whom she was given a solo contract aged 23. Beginning her career as a soprano, her early roles included Cherubino, Pamina, Micaela and Mimi. Later as a mezzo she sang the Composer, Octavian, Charlotte, Dido (Berlioz and Purcell) amongst others. Her years at ENO coincided with those of David Pountney and Mark Elder – a wonderfully productive period in British operatic history. She has since been a regular guest artist singing over 40 roles with the company.

She made her debut at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Siebel Faust with Alfredo Kraus, at The Metropolitan Opera, the Bayerisches Staatsoper in Munich and the Opera de Bastille, Paris as Carmen, at the Opera de Geneve, Switzerland as Fricka The Ring, and at Houston Grand Opera as Polinesso Ariodante.

Other roles include Eboli Don Carlos, Azucena Il Trovatore ,Amneris Aida, Orfeo (Gluck), Judith Bluebeard’s Castle, Kabanicha Katya Kabanova, Ottavia Poppea (also a BBC film), Dalilah Samson et Dalilah, and Herodias Salome. For the Met she has sung Carmen, Queen Isabella The Voyage by Philip Glass, and Hanna Glawari The Merry Widow.

Sally has been invited to New Zealand for 3 different productions of Carmen.

Sally has enjoyed equal success on the concert platform where she has performed with all the UK’s leading orchestras and internationally with Sir Mark Elder, Sir Charles Mackerras, Richard Hickox, Paul Daniel, Kirril Petrenko, Riccardo Chailli, Daniel Baremboim, Gerard Schwartz and Richard Farnes.

She has sung semi-staged performances of Judith Bluebeard’s Castle with the Symphony Orchestras of Bordeaux, Houston, Seattle and Porto, Portugal, as well as full scale productions for ENO and ON.

Sally played Julie Laverne Showboat in the Opera North/RSC 10 week run at the London Palladium; she was nominated for “Best Actress in a Musical” at the Olivier Awards.

She has sung a wide variety of music over a long career with numerous recording to her credit, including several with Chandos (Judith Bluebeard’s Castle, Herodias Salome, Florence Pike Albert Herring, and Sorceress Dido and Aeneas), Paul McCartney’s Liverpool Oratorio, and three jazz albums (Sally Burgess Sings Jazz, The Other Me, and Happy Talk). For TER she has recorded Show Boat, The King and I, and West Side Story.

Sally has performed and sung with the Royal Ballet L’Invitation aux Voyages, and presented a one woman show “Sally Burgess’s Women” directed by Keith Warner. A solo tour of “Something Wonderful – the life and music of Richard Rodgers” was created for Opera North. At the Barbican she sang and presented “Harold Arlen – Who?” a two week run based on his life and music, both with jazz ensemble.

She made her directorial debut with Cosi Fan Tutte for ECO at Buxton and in London 2009, followed by a new opera Sonya’s Story by Neal Thornton at the Riverside Studios 2010. She directed Il Trovatore for Dorset Opera 2012 , and will create a new Cosi to open the Dubrovnik Festival 2013.

Sally heads the Amazwi Omzansi Africa Performing Arts Internationa Festival workshops in Durban 2013.

Photo Credit – Bill Knight

Iain Burnside enjoys a unique reputation as pianist and broadcaster, forged through his commitment to the song repertoire and his collaborations with leading international singers. In recent seasons such artists have included Rebecca Evans, Ailish Tynan, Susan Bickley and Ann Murray; John Mark Ainsley, Andrew Kennedy, Mark Padmore, Roderick Williams, William Dazeley and Bryn Terfel.

His extensive recording portfolio reflects Iain’s passion for British music: the complete songs of Gerald Finzi, together with Butterworth, Gurney, Ireland and Vaughan Williams on Naxos; Britten, Tippett, Herbert Hughes, FG Scott and Judith Weir on Signum; Richard Rodney Bennett on NMC; contemporary Scottish repertoire on Delphian. The NMC Songbook received a Gramophone Award. In 2012 Albion Records will issue a solo disc of Vaughan Williams and Gurney.

Iain’s broadcasting career covers both radio and TV and has been honoured with a Sony Radio Award. Acclaimed as a programmer, Iain has devised innovative recitals combining music and poetry, presented with huge success in Brussels and Barcelona with actors Simon Russell Beale, Fiona Shaw and Harriet Walter. He is Research Associate at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. His first play, A Soldier and a Maker, will premiere at the Barbican Centre in April 2012.

Brad Cohen first came to public attention when, a year after winning the 1994 Leeds Conductor’s Competition, he conducted the world premiere of Thomas Adès’ Powder her Face. Since that auspicious beginning he has conducted a wide ranging repertoire at English National Opera, Opera Australia, Opera North, and opera companies including Luzern, Nantes/Angers, and the Nederlands Reisopera, and at festivals including Hong Kong, Edinburgh, Cheltenham, Adelaide, Rossini in Wildbad, and Porto.

Brad Cohen has conducted orchestras including the London Philharmonic, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic, BBC National Orchestra of Wales and BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, Het Gelders Orkest, Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and the City of London Sinfonia.

2007-8 engagements included Brad’s debut disc for Chandos: a highlights recording of his own critical edition of Les Pêcheurs de perles, with Simon Keenlyside, Barry Banks, Rebecca Evans, and the LPO. He recently returned to the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria, as well as to Opera Australia for La Cenerentola at the Sydney Opera House.

2008-9 engagements included Brad’s second disc for Chandos: highlights of Rossini’s L’italiana in Algeri with Jennifer Larmore and the Philharmonia. He made his first disc for Deutsche Grammophon with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo and Emma Matthews, and his Swedish opera debut with the Konwitschny production of La bohème. Brad returned to Opera Holland Park for a new production of Il trovatore, and was reunited with Nelly Miricioiu and the Chelsea Opera Group for a South Bank concert performance of Verdi’s Macbeth. In addition, he appeared in the major television series, Maestro, for BBC2.

The 2009-10 season began with a new production of La Cenerentola in Malmö. In February 2010 Brad led the American premiere of Jonathan Dove’s musical tale The Enchanted Pig in New York, before travelling to Mauritius for concerts and educational projects. In April he conducted Carmen for West Australian Opera, before returning to London for a new production of Pelléas et Mélisande at Opera Holland Park in June. In July he concluded the season with a new production of Norma, with Hasmik Papian in the title role, for Opera Hedeland in Denmark.

In the 2010-11 season, Brad’s engagements include his debut for New York City Opera, conducting Jonathan Miller’s production of L’elisir d’amore, directing Schumann and Brahms at the Dartington Summer School, and return invitations to WASO (with Ronald Brautigam) and Värmlands Sinfoniettan.

As an important complement to his performing career, Brad Cohen has become an accomplished operatic editor, and, since his first critical edition of Les Pêcheurs de perles was published worldwide by Peters Edition in 2002, he has completed and published editions of Maometto secondo, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, and Norma.

Jonathan Cohen is rapidly developing a reputation as one of Britain’s finest and most versatile young musicians. A conductor, cellist and keyboardist, with a wide ranging experience of music ?from Baroque to contemporary, he is in increasing demand worldwide.

In the 2010/2011 season Jonathan conducts Monteverdi’s Poppea with Glyndebourne Touring Opera, Ulysses with English National opera and Dido & Aeneas with Dijon Opera. On the concert stage he will conduct the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Ensemble Orchestral de Paris and Capella Cracoviensis. Recent highlights have included the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, the Irish Chamber Orchestra and Potsdamer Kammerakademie. For the 30th anniversary season of Les Arts Florissants, Jonathan collaborated with William Christie conducting performances of Dido and Aeneas (Netherlands Opera), Purcell’s Fairy Queen (Opéra Comique and Brooklyn Academy New York) as well as a programme of Gluck, Haydn and Mozart in London and Paris.

As assistant conductor to William Christie, Emmanuelle Haim and Harry Bicket, Jonathan has worked on numerous productions over the last few years. Highlights with Emmanuelle Haim include Monteverdi’s Orfeo (Lille Opera), Mozart’s Nozze di Figaro (Lille) and Monteverdi’s Poppea (Glyndebourne Festival). Highlights with William Christie include Rameau Les Paladins Théatre du Chatêlet), Mozart’s Idomeneo, Haydn’s Creation, Handel’s L’Allegro (Paris Opera), Monteverdi’s Ritorno di Ulisse (Teatro Real Madrid) and Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas (Wiener Festwochen and Opéra Comique).

Jonathan Cohen enjoys a close relationship with Les Arts Florissants and has recently been appointed Associate Conductor. His conducting début with them conducting Zampa at the Opéra Comique in March 2008 received great critical acclaim: “his exhilarating yet attentive baton brought out all the impetus, liveliness and flowing colours of Hérold’s score” (Opera Magazine).

After finishing his undergraduate degree at Clare College, Cambridge, Jonathan Cohen began his career establishing himself as a cellist. He performed as guest principal with many of the UK’s foremost orchestras and ensembles, such as the Philharmonia Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and The King’s Consort. With this experience Jonathan developed a unique crossover specialism in the field of early music and an interest in period instruments. He was a founder member of the London Haydn Quartet and with them recorded two discs of Haydn Quartets on the Hyperion label. He continues to enjoy chamber music projects, collaborating regularly with violinists Daniel Hope and Barnabas Kelemen.

With counter tenor Iestyn Davies, Jonathan will début his newly founded orchestra Arcangelo with a disc for Hyperion of Porpora cantatas and a concert tour next year to celebrate the release of the CD. Other exciting artistic projects with Arcangelo are planned and Jonathan intends to focus his energies on developing Arcangelo whilst enjoying his collaboration with Les Arts Florissants and his rapidly expanding guest conducting career.

Rory Bremner

Rory Bremner is the UK’s premier award-winning comedy and Satirical Impressionist.

Born in Edinburgh in 1961 and educated at Wellington College, he went on to attend King’s College, London, where he graduated with an honours degree in French, German and imitating lecturers! King’s College made him a Fellow in 2006 and he is also a Fellow of Queen Mary College.

While still at university, he performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and began his career on the satirical radio shows News Revue (LBC) and Weekending (BBC Radio) before embarking on a seven-year spell at the BBC. Since then, he’s appeared in countless comedy shows from Have I Got News For You to Whose Line is it Anyway? including: Comic Relief, They Think It’s All Over, It’ll Be Alright on the Night, Mock the Week and QIand has been interviewed more than any other performer by both Wogan and Parkinson. Together with John Bird and John Fortune, his programmes (Rory Bremner- Who Else, Bremner, Bird and Fortune) have been a mainstay of Channel 4?s output since 1992, winning a total of four BAFTAs and three RTS awards.

Rory had seven series on the BBC, from 1986 to 1992, winning the Special Award at the Golden Rose of Montreux in 1987. He has been a frequent guest on The Andrew Marr Show (BBC1) providing a satirical review of current political events through his many characters. In 2008 he retraced his family history for Who Do You Think You Are. Elsewhere, he appeared regularly on Breakfast with Frost, and has written and performed the BBC radio series Some of Our Pilots Are Missingand writes articles and diaries for The New Statesman, The Sunday Telegraph, The Sunday Times and The London Evening Standard.Since 1999, he has translated two operas: Kurt Weill’s Der Silbersee and George Bizet’s Carmen, the latter for a cast recruited from South African townships who promptly translated the dialogue into Xhosa so Rory can’t understand it! Rory is much in demand as a Broadcaster, Actor, After-Dinner Speaker and Awards Host.

Alexander Crowe was born and grew up in Edinburgh. In 1966 he went up to Cambridge University as Organ Scholar of Sidney Sussex College, graduating BA in 1970. He remained at Cambridge for a further three years as a research student, spending part of his time attached to the University of Helsinki on a Finnish Ministry of Education Scholarship, undertaking research into the early unpublished works of Sibelius. In 1973 he took up a position as repetiteur at the Lower Saxony State Theatre in Hannover, in what was then West Germany. He was appointed Principal Stage Band Conductor there in 1976 and Head of Music Staff in 1977.

On returning to the UK in 1981, Alexander Crowe was appointed Senior Tutor, Opera Music Staff, at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) in Manchester. He became Head of Opera Music Staff in April 1992. In addition to this, he was a member of the music staff at the Buxton Festival from 1982 to 1991, from 1987 as Head of Music Staff. Since 1998 he has also been the Director of the Easter Baroque Courses run by the Yorke Trust in North Norfolk.

From 2001 until 2010 Alexander Crowe was Head of the School of Vocal & Opera Studies at the RNCM; he was made an Honorary Fellow of the College in 2001. He remains on the staff there as a visiting repetiteur, a post he also holds at the Royal Academy of Music and the Royal College of Music in London. His freelance career continues, as coach, accompanist and organist.

Sophie Daneman has enjoyed a long and distinguished international career on both the opera and concert stage. Her affinity with the baroque repertoire has lead to her association with many of the leading ensembles and conductors in this field and in particular William Christie and Les Arts Florissants. An accomplished song recitalist, she has appeared at many of the world’s major recital venues. Sophie’s operatic roles include Melisande at the Opera Comique, Cleopatra for Gottingen Handel festival, Euridice for the Bayerische Staatsoper and Susanna for Grange Park Opera. Her numerous recordings include the title roles in Handel’s Rodelinda, Theodora and Acis and Galatea which won the gramophone award. Her lieder recordings include 3 volumes of Mendelssohn songs for Hyperion with Eugene Asti and Schumann songs for EMI with Julius Drake.

In recent years, alongside her singing career, Sophie has also enjoyed success as a stage director, most recently with “An Italian garden ” for Les Arts Florissants 2015 Jardin des Voix programme and a Rameau double bill for the Theatre de Caen.

Mary King’s career has encompassed a wide range of roles, including that of performer, teacher, coach and most recently broadcaster and writer. A popular and highly experienced mezzo soprano, Mary has worked with leading conductors and numerous orchestras across the world, and has made a particular feature of the contemporary classical repertoire.

Mary King first studied English at the University of Birmingham, and after gaining a PGCE at St. Anne’s Oxford, taught Humanities and Music at Gosford Hill School in Oxford. During this time she sang with the vocal groups the Clerkes of Oxenford and Schola Cantorum. She then won a place on the postgraduate Opera Course at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, becoming a pupil of Noelle Barker. Post Guildhall, Mary continued her studies with the renowned coaches Paul Hamburger, Janice Chapman and David Harper.

Mary’s versatility as a performer has allowed her career to encompass a wide range of vocal genres, from opera, oratorio, chamber music and recital through to musical theatre and straight plays.

She has had a long involvement with outreach and teaching, working with all the major companies in the UK as well as running training programmes both at home and abroad. During Mary’s long association with English National Opera, she devised and ran a highly successful performance skills course, ‘The Knack’, for eleven years, and between 2004 and 2006 she was also an Artistic Associate for the company.

In September 2006, Mary became Head of Singing at Millennium Performing Arts, now based in new premises in Woolwich, South East London. In November of the same year, she was also appointed Director of Voicelab, a new initiative at London’s Southbank Centre. From casting for professional projects (Carmen Jones, 2007), to creating and training numerous choirs and small ensembles, Mary is at the heart of vocal activity at the Southbank Centre, encouraging vocal talent in all its manifestations.

Mary is increasingly widely known through her work on television and radio. She was one of the driving forces behind Channel 4?s critically acclaimed and award-winning Operatunity, a five week television series introducing opera to the wider public. This was followed by Musicality, also on Channel 4, a five part series on music theatre. She appeared as the expert analyst for the Cardiff Singer of the World competitions in 2005 and 2007, shown extensively on BBC Television, and performed the role again for the 2009 competition. She is a regular guest presenter on BBC Radio 3, and she has been one of the judges on the 2006 and 2008 BBC Radio 3 Choir of the Year competitions.

Mary is also in demand as a writer. In 2007 The Singer’s Handbook (Faber) was published, co-written with Anthony Legge. This has been followed by the first two parts (English and French repertoire) of a projected series of selected vocal repertoire collections with coaching notes, The Boosey Voice Coach (Boosey & Hawkes). The German repertoire volume is in production.

Mary King is an Honorary Associate of the Royal Academy of Music, an Honorary Fellow of Rose Bruford College and she has recently been made a Fellow of the Northern College of Music.

Wyn Davies was born in South Wales. Since his début with Welsh National Opera, he has conducted most major British opera companies and many orchestras including the Hallé, the Northern Sinfonia and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra.

He spent two years at the Metropolitan Opera, New York and two seasons in Canada where he conducted an award-winning production of Weill’s THREEPENNY OPERA in Toronto. He was appointed Director of Music to New Zealand Opera in 2005.

In Britain, Wyn Davies conducts regularly at the Buxton Festival. He is also a noted pianist and cabaret performer. Other notable projects include Kern’s SHOW BOAT for the Royal Shakespeare Company and Opera North, on tour and in the West End; ANIMATED OPERAS and the Theresienstadt children’s opera BRUNDIBAR for S4C television. Wyn Davies has prepared performing editions of works as diverse as L’INCORONAZIONE DI POPPEA and THE BEGGARS’ OPERA.

Mandy Demetriou is originally from Zimbabwe and has worked as a dancer, choreographer, teacher and performer in a wide variety of styles and methods. Her passion is dance and movement and she works with dancers, actors, singers and musicians.

Mandy has worked as Movement Director / choreographer at Royal Opera House, Holland Park, English National Opera, Opera North and British Youth Opera of which she also sits on the Artistic Committee.

She currently works as a freelance choreographer and as movement coach at The Royal Academy of Music, The National Opera Studio and The Jette Parker Young Artists Programme at the Royal Opera House.

Mandy Demetriou has been fortunate enough to have had as mentors both Sheila Barlow and Anna Sweeny who have encouraged her to take their inspiration and find her own style of work. Richard Van Allan, John Copley, Geraldine Stephenson, Jean Hart and Lisa Ullman have all had a strong influence on her work. This gives her a unique pedigree when it comes to working with young singers and dancers. Her work has also been informed by the techniques of Classical Ballet, Jazz Dance – Matt Mattox style, Laban Technique, Alexander Technique, Pilates, Ballroom Dance, Flamenco. Feldenkrais technique, yoga and many other styles of dance and movement based techniques. Her work in movement for singers is however, a specialist area in which she has been particularly interested as it requires a deep understanding of the voice, the singer and what they need to enable them to sing and also show emotions and thoughts in their movement.

David Edwards works internationally as a stage director, writer and presenter collaborating with Opera Companies, Symphony Orchestras, Universities and Young Artists’ Training Programmes in the UK, USA, Europe, Japan and Singapore.

David was born in London and graduated in Classics from Cambridge University. He has directed opera around the world: in San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, Portland, Houston, Minneapolis, Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington, London (where he staged ten revivals for The Royal Opera), Milan, Vienna, France, Italy, Singapore, and regularly in Tokyo at the New National Theatre where he taught on the Young Artists’ program for over a decade.

In 2016 David directed PÉLLEAS ET MÉLISANDE with the LA Philharmonic and FAITH – Stravinsky’s late religious music with the Philharmonia, both conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM (Mendelssohn/ Shakespeare) in Middle Temple Hall, CARMEN for the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and TOSCA at Chiswick House, London.

Recent projects have included IL PRIGIONIERO (Dallapiccola), DIE WALKÜRE (Act 3), PÉLLEAS ET MÉLISANDE and BORIS GODUNOV (scenes) with the Philharmonia Orchestra at the RFH, London; FIDELIO, RIGOLETTO and THE MERRY WIDOW in Singapore, TOSCALA TRAVIATA and LES CONTES d’HOFFMANN for Diva Opera touring the U.K. and Europe, CURLEW RIVER in Japan, DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE and Roussel’s PADMAVATI in Bordeaux, DIALOGUES DES CARMÉLITES and A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM (Britten) in Portland, LA RONDINE with Oberlin in Italy, DAS RHEINGOLD and DIE WALKÜRE for Secret Opera and Edward Lambert’s THE CATFISH CONUNDRUM and OPERA WITH A TITLE for the Tête-a-Tête Festival of new opera in London.

In the summer of 2013 David was Artistic Director of INSIDE THE RING, a series of special events that ran concurrently with Longborough Festival Opera’s RING cycle, and at Aldeburgh in 2014 he curated a weekend of events entitled APRES LE DÉLUGE on the theme of early 20th century music and art. His original scripts have been performed in London, Aldeburgh, Eastbourne and Presteigne (Wagner & Berlioz, Verdi in Venice, Wagner, Britten & the Sea, From Bayreuth to Busseto, Verdi’s Singers on Record, Verdi’s Trills, Wagner in Exile, Nolan and the Stage, Wagner’s Elements, Breaking The Ring, An Operatic Bestiary, Wagner and the Dream King, Bayreuth or Bust, Gluck at 300, Time Becomes Space – Act 3 of Parsifal ).

Stage director David Edwards was engaged by the Royal Opera Covent Garden as an assistant and then Staff Director. Here David had the opportunity to work with renowned directors such as Götz Friedrich, Richard Jones, Elijah Moshinsky, John Cox, Trevor Nunn and Jonathan Miller. He directed revivals and restagings at Covent Garden including Katya Kabanova, Der Rosenkavalier, Arabella, Fedora, Die Walküre, Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Samson et Dalila, Simon Boccanegra, Aida, Attila and Stiffelio and guest performances in international houses such as La Scala Milan, Staatsoper Vienna, Bologna, Brussels, Los Angeles, Washington, Houston, San Francisco and Chicago. He also wrote surtitles for productions at Covent Garden of La bohème, Madama Butterfly, Rigoletto, Mitridate, Roméo et Juliette, Alcina and Barbe-bleue (Offenbach).

Since leaving Covent Garden in 1997 David has enjoyed a successful career as a freelance director on the international operatic scene.

He has a particular interest in nurturing young artists and has been active as Production Director for the Mastersingers in the UK for the past twelve years.

At the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Rebecca Evans has sung Mimi (La bohème), Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Despina (Così fan tutte) and Johanna (Sweeney Todd) and at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Munich, her roles have included Ginevra (Ariodante), Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier), Zdenka (Arabella), Ilia (Idomeneo) and Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro). Elsewhere she has sung Despina at the Deutsche Staatsoper, Berlin; Ilia for the Netherlands Opera and for the Opera de Lausanne; the title role of ‘The Cunning Little Vixen’ for Scottish Opera and Romilda (Xerxes), Ginevra and Governess (The Turn of the Screw) for the ENO. A favourite at the WNO, her roles there have included Mimi, Countess Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), Pamina, Ilia, Marzelline (Fidelio), Norina (Don Pasquale) and Gretel (Hänsel und Gretel).

Rebecca Evans has also established a major operatic career in America where she has sung Susanna and Zerlina for the Metropolitan Opera, New York; Susanna for the Santa Fe Opera; Pamina for the Lyric Opera of Chicago; and Zerlina, Anne Trulove (The Rake’s Progress) and Adina (L’Elisir d’Amore) for San Francisco Opera.

Her forthcoming engagements include Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni) at the ENO; Liu (Turandot) at the WNO and Countess Almaviva at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

In concert, Rebecca has appeared at the Salzburg, Edinburgh, Tanglewood and Ravinia Festivals and she is a regular guest at the BBC Proms. Her engagements include the San Francisco Symphony with Tilson Thomas, the Boston Symphony Orchestra with Tate, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra with Mackerras, the London Symphony Orchestra and the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra with Gardiner, the Sapporo Symphony Orchestra with Otaka and the Accademia Santa Cecilia with Pappano.

A Grammy Award winning artist, she has recorded prolifically.

Based in London but often travelling to perform in Europe Ben Frost has an established reputation as a recitalist, repetiteur, teacher and chorus master. Recent work includes Chief Repetiteur for English National Opera on The Rite of Spring assisting Edward Gardner. Director of Music, Opera A La Carte for The Barber of Seville and Don Pasquale.

Ben regularly works as a repetiteur for English National Opera, Royal Opera House and BBC Singers. Other clients include London Symphony Chorus and London Philharmonic Choir.

As a conductor, Ben is Director of Music for Opera A La Carte who will be touring with Tosca in 2010/2011. He is also Acting Chorus Master for Chelsea Opera Group.

As a specialist in opera, he has coached many singers of international repute. He has given many recitals with singers and instrumentalists as pianist, harpsichordist and organist.

Tony Gray was born and educated in Victoria, Australia. He graduated from the Victorian College of Arts where he studied with Roy Shepherd and Stephen McIntyre, winning several awards and prizes, including the Allans Keyboard Award two years running. In 1982 he received a scholarship from the Astra foundation to continue his studies in London with Joyce Rathbone and Geoffrey Parsons. From his time at College he has been a champion of many living composers, and his work with Australian composers Malcolm Williamson and John Carmichael has been particularly productive.

Tony Gray is one of ABC Classics’ most prolific recording artists, having recorded fourteen discs of solo piano music for the label, as well as featuring on a recital disc for KNS Classical and a number of other recording projects. His recording of the complete piano music of Malcolm Williamson has been included in a recent survey of 1001 recordings to hear before you die. He has recently started a major project to record the complete solo paino music of Saint-Saens, including a large body of unpublished and previously unrecorded material.

“From the established repertoire to unknown new and old keyboard music, Tony Gray belongs to that small group of internationally distinguished pianists who blend depth of understanding with technical mastery.” Malcolm Williamson, AO, CBE

“Powerfully idiomatic… hugely impressive, diligent and captivating pianism” Soundscapes

“His technique is prodigious: crisp and biting where needed while filigree passages are woven with a sense of abandonment to their intricacy” Music Forum

David Gowland is the Artistic Director for the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme, Royal Opera House Covent Garden. David Gowland studied at the Royal College of Music where he won the Ruby Hope and Major van Someren Godfrey prizes for piano accompaniment. He also studied at the National Opera Studio, supported by the Countess of Munster Musical Trust.

He joined the Glyndebourne music staff in 1987, won the 1988 Jani Strasser Award and has continued to work there as a senior coach. David was Head of Music Staff at the Grand Théâtre de Genève from 1989 – 1996, assisting conductors such as Tate, Patané, Jordan, Bartoletti, Thielemann, Plasson, Elder, de Waart, Bertini and Campanella.

He has worked regularly with many companies as assistant conductor/senior coach including Opéra National de Paris, Netherlands Opera, Teatro Real di Madrid, Rome Opera, Royal Danish Opera, Teatro San Carlo di Napoli and the Aix, Orange, Salzburg and Wexford Festivals. He was senior coach on The Ring under Jeffery Tate in Australia.

David has conducted Die Dreigroschenoper for RADA. Concert work has included the Edinburgh and Aldeburgh Festivals, the Proms and television and radio with the BBC, RTE and RTSR.

David is a visiting tutor at the National Opera Studio. He has been associated with the Young Artists Programme at the Royal Opera House since its inception in 2000, initially as Director of Musical Preparation and from 2006 as Artistic Director. ??In recital, he has accompanied Barbara Bonney, Amanda Roocroft, Cecilia Gasdia, Denyce Graves, Martina Mussacchio, Madelyn Renée and he regularly accompanies all the singers on the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme in recitals of both song and operatic repertory.

Philip Headlamconductor and vocal coachhas worked with opera companies and orchestras in Europe, the U.K. and Canada including The Royal Opera House (Covent Garden) English National Opera, English Touring Opera, Welsh National Opera, Theatre Royal de la Monniae (Brussels), Wexford Opera Festival, Bregenz Opera Festival (Austria), Batignano Opera Festival (Italy), Opera Rara and conducted the Britten Sinfonia, Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, BBC Singers and CBC Festival Orchestra in concert and in broadcast on BBC Radio 3, CBC Radio, Belgian Radio, Channel 4 television (Judith Weir’s opera Armida) and CDs (NMC, Avie, Prima Facie labels.) He is noted for his work in Italian language opera, the operas of Benjamin Britten and his conducting of 20th and 21st century music. He is conductor and co-artistic director of The Continuum Ensemble.

He has been director of opera training programmes for Birkbeck as well as Morley College, London and taught young professional singers at the Royal College of Music, Royal Academy of Music, Trinity-Laban Conservatoire, Ghent Conservatory Opera Studio, Israel Vocal Arts Institute and the Banff Centre, Canada.

‘…inspired stylish performances under conductor Philip Headlam…’  –  The Guardian

‘…the excellent Continuum Ensemble’s committed, virtuosic playing under conductor Philip Headlam’  –  Financial Times

Extraordinarily committed, searingly communicative performances…thanks to Philip Headlam’s lucid  direction‘  –  The Times

 ‘…and you can’t really praise more highly. Intelligent playing. Intelligent concert.’   –  Winnipeg Free Press

Linda Hutchison studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where she won the Sydney de Vries Opera prize. As a performer, her operatic career began at the age of fourteen when she sang the role of Belinda in an open air production of Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas. As a result of being heard in the finals of the Kathleen Ferrier Scholarship Competition she was offered a contract with D’Oyly Carte Opera Company. She sang with them for several years as principal soprano. In 2010 a biography of her ‘Linda Anne Hutchison, Enchantment Surely’ was published in Tony Joseph’s D’Oyly Carte Personalities series. As well as her opera and oratorio work, Linda gave many recitals, both as a soloist and as the soprano in a duo with tenor. She was also part of a piano, flute and voice trio.

In her teaching practice Linda works with a wide range of professionals from the classical, music theatre and jazz worlds. Linda was, for several years, a visiting member of staff at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (now the Royal Conservatiore of Scotland) and a visiting lecturer at Birkbeck College, University of London. She created and directed a part-time course and third year degree module at the London College of Music and Media which balanced the science of the singing voice with artistic freedom. This experience she extended into organizing and directing The Fundamentals of the Singing Voice, the professional development course run jointly by the British Voice Association and the City Literary Institute, London. She is a regular visiting presenter on the Association of Teachers of Singing summer teacher training course where she presents and deals with Anatomy and Physiology, Accent Breathing and Music Theatre. She is an international guest tutor for the Irish College of Music Theatre, the first in Ireland to provide a professional qualification for music theatre.

Linda works extensively in voice, breathing and rehabilitation with a wide range of performers and teachers.  She runs performance workshops and gives presentations on the Anatomy and Physiology of the Voice, the Development of the Voice, The Changing Voice, Care of the Voice and The Accent Breathing Method.

Linda’s work in voice clinics began in 1997. She was a member of the internationally renowned Sidcup Voice Clinic at Queen Mary’s Hospital for five years, then part of the team at Medway Voice Clinic, Chatham Maritime Hospital and for some years singing advisor in the voice clinics at Bart’s Hospital, London. She is now the specialist singing advisor at the Lewisham Voice clinic.

Linda has been President of the British Voice Association and for many years was a member of its Education Working Party. She has also served on the Council of the Association of Teachers of Singing.

Elizabeth Rowe graduated from Birmingham University, the Royal Academy of Music and was sponsored by the Royal Opera House and the Sir Henry Richardson Award to attend the National Opera Studio.

Upon leaving the NOS, Elizabeth free-lanced as a répétiteur with Scottish Opera and English Touring Opera and then joined the Music Staff at English National Opera from 1997 – 2004. Whilst at ENO she worked on numerous

productions notably: Berg’s Lulu, Wagner’s Ring Cycle and the world premieres of David Sawyer’s “From Morning to Midnight”, and Mark-Anthony Turnage’s “The Silver Tassie”.

Since leaving ENO, Elizabeth has free-lanced for numerous companies, including: The Royal Opera, Oper Frankfurt, The Canadian Opera Company, Glyndebourne, Opera North, Opera Holland Park, English Touring Opera and British Youth Opera.

Elizabeth also works extensively with young singers: she has been a regular coach for the Jette Parker Young Artist Programme at The Royal Opera House, The National Opera Studio, the Associated Studios London, the Opera Course at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and for Morley College Opera Course.

As well as being a busy freelance coach and répétiteur, Elizabeth was Assistant Head of Music at the National Opera Studio, Course Director for Birkbeck University of London Opera Course, and is currently Head of Music for Opera Holland Park.

Sergey Rybin was born in the city of Tomsk in Siberia (Russia). He began playing the piano aged seven, studying at the specialised music school for gifted children, attached to the Conservatory of Novosibirsk. Subsequently, he studied at the Moscow State University of Culture and Arts, where having gained a Ph.D., he became Professor of Piano and taught for four years. Before coming to the UK Sergey also worked as a repetiteur and coach for Helikon Opera Company in Moscow.

Since completing his studies the Royal Academy of Music under tutelage of Malcolm Martineau, Sergey has worked extensively for City of Birmingham Opera, English Touring Opera, Garsington Opera, Opera Holland Park and also performed as an recitalist in Leeds Lieder+ Festival, Tete-a-Tete Opera Festival, Hampstead and Highgate Festival, Beaminster Festival and in other prominent venues in the UK. Recent engagements include various productions at RCM, Stravinsky’s Les Noces with Birmingham Opera and Rusalka at Grange Park Opera. Along with maitaining various commitments at the Royal College of Music and National Opera Studio Sergey will return to Birmingham Opera for the world premiere of Life is a Dream by Jonathan Dove, Grange Park Opera for Queen of Spades and Opera Holland Park for Eugene Onegin later this year.

Mikhail Shilyaev was born in 1979 in Izhevsk, Russia. He started learning the piano at the age of six and won several regional piano competitions at a young age. In 1992 he entered the Central Music School of the Moscow Conservatoire and in 1998 became a full-time student at the Moscow State Conservatoire, where he studied with Professor Olga Zhukova and Professor Elisso Virsaladze. In October 2003 he gained a DAAD scholarship which enabled him to study at the Munich Hochschule with Franz Massinger.

Mikhail is the prize-winner of many competitions, and has been supported in his studies by many awards. In 2005 he won both second prize in the Ibiza International Piano Competition and first prize in the Intercollegiate Beethoven Competition organized by the Beethoven Piano Society of Europe. In July 2006 he won second prize in the Amy Brant Piano Competition in Birmingham. He has also been awarded the Myra Hess Award from the Musicians’ Benevolent Fund, the 2006 Ricci Foundation Award and the 2006 Maisie Lewis Award.

He has performed as a soloist and chamber musician throughout Europe and in 2005–7 Mikhail studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester with Mark Ray, Alexander Melnikov and Nelson Goerner. He gave his Wigmore Hall debut recital in March 2007.

Mikhail has participated in masterclasses given by András Schiff, Charles Rosen, Stephen Hough, Barry Douglas and Stefano Fiuzzi and in Summer 2007 he took part in the Britten-Pears Young Artists Programme. As a soloist with orchestra, he has recently performed with the London Soloists Chamber Orchestra, with the RNCM Concert Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Trinity College of Music and the Gulbenkian Symphony Orchestra.

In July 2008 Mikhail appeared as a soloist at the Bridgewater Hall in Messiaen’s Turangalila Symphony with the RNCM Symphony Orchestra under Pascal Rophé. In 2008-2010 Mikhail was an appointed Junior Fellow in Accompaniment at the Royal College of Music. In 2009 Mikhail has received Golubovich Scholarship at the Trinity College of Music where he was working on his Master degree with professor Deniz Gelenbe. In July 2010 Mikhail won the Bronze Medal at the prestigious Vianna da Motta International Piano Competition in Lisbon.

Before becoming the Director of the theatre at Barrow-in-Furness in 1964, Giles Havergal was for a short time an actor on stage and television. He was Director of Watford Palace Theatre (1965-69) where his directing work included the British premiere of Tennessee William’s Sweet Bird of Youth. He was Director of the Citizens’ Theatre, Glasgow with Philip Prowse and Robert David Macdonald from 1969 to 2003. He directed 84 plays in Glasgow including works by Shakespeare, Brecht, Orton, Shaw, O’Casey, Sheridan and Arthur Miller. He has also directed 26 specially commissioned childrens’ Christmas productions.

His production of his adaptation of Travels With My Aunt by Graham Greene was first presented in Glasgow in 1989 and then played in the West End where it won an Olivier Award in 1993, and off Broadway where it won a Drama Desk Award in 1995. His production of his and Robert David Macdonald’s adaptation of Death in Venice by Thomas Mann was first presented in Glasgow in 2000. It played at the Manhattan Ensemble Theater, New York in 2002.

He has directed prolifically for Opera companies including Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera, Opera North and Buxton Festival.

Johnathan Hinden is a senior coach at Glyndebourne, where he was for some years also Head of Music Staff. For the rest of the year he teaches at the National Opera Studio, the Royal Academy of Music and the VYAP at the Royal Opera House and is a frequent lecturer on operatic subjects for NADFAS and other cultural societies.

Adam Johnson is one of the most versatile and exciting young musicians to have founded his own orchestra in recent years. The Northern Lights Symphony Orchestra, of which he is both Artistic Director and Principal Conductor, has attracted the attention of concert-goers in London since its formation in 2007 (‘Thrilling’ Classical Source 2011). Unique among the outstanding artists of his generation, Johnson is as equally at home conducting opera as he is fulfilling the role of soloist in concerto repertoire, playing chamber music, or directing his own large-scale compositions.


Winner of the Ricordi Operatic Conducting Prize whilst still studying under Sir Mark Elder, Adam Johnson was invited to assist Ari Benjamin Meyers on his multi-media contemporary theatre work Il tempo di Postino as part of the Manchester International Festival. His outstanding contribution to the production led the following year to associate conductorship of the London première of Jonathan Dove’s opera Flight with British Youth Opera under Nicholas Cleobury. His subsequent operatic successes have included direction of Karol Szymanowski’s rarely performed King Roger and Benjamin Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia for Elemental Opera, a young innovative touring company with whom he enjoys an ongoing partnership.


A former scholar at the Royal Northern College of Music with the Sema Group Contemporary Performance Prize to his credit (for his performance of Lowell Lieberman Concerto No.1 – ‘a bravura…terrific performance’ Liebermann) Adam Johnson continues his piano studies with Peter Feuchtwanger who has described him as in possession of ‘an excellent technique and full of fantasy’.


Future plans include developing an ambitious educational programme in inner London with the Northern Lights Symphony Orchestra, which enjoys a residency at St Saviour’s Church, Pimilco. When time permits Johnson enjoys playing chamber music with colleagues at the North Yorkshire Chamber Music Festival and at other prestigious events. The composer Oliver Knussen has spoken of the ‘extraordinary detail’ of his performances.


“A Revelation” – My Discovery of the Year 2009, Jonathan Pryce CBE
“Incisive and Committed” – Guardian 2010
“Thrilling” – Edward Clark, President of The Sibelius Society 2011


Aurélia Jonvaux is a French Language and Diction Teacher at the GSMD where she assists Florence Daguerre de Hurreaux. She is also a French Language Coach for the Opera Studies and Historical Performance Departments. The Guildhall School productions for which she has coached include Debussy’s L’Enfant Prodigue, Ravel’s L’Enfant et les Sortile?ges and Charpentier’s Acte?on Change? en Biche as part of the London Handel Festival 2015. Aure?lia is regularly asked to coach French opera scenes and is part of the tutoring staff at the annual GSMD Summer Course led by Dominic Wheeler in Fontainebleau, France. She was recently invited to work with the BBC Symphony Chorus on Berlioz’s Rome?o et Juliette and for the Royal Academy of Music Vocal Faculty. Since 2014 she has also been working for the Associated Studios Opera Courses.

Born in France, Aure?lia initially read psychology and musicology at the Franc?ois Rabelais University in Tours. In 2004 she joined the Guildhall School of Music & Drama studying with David Pollard and graduated in 2010 with a Guildhall Artist MMus in Vocal Performance. For this she was generously supported by the Guildhall School Trust. In 2011 she completed a Guildhall Artist Fellowship Programme which included her offering French Language classes and individual coaching. As a result of this and her passion for French elocution and declamation, Aure?lia was subsequently invited to join the Vocal Studies staff and collaborate with Gordon Stewart as a French Language and Diction Teacher.

In addition to her teaching and coaching career, Aure?lia Jonvaux is a versatile performer curious to explore diverse genres. For example, in 2010 she took part in Iain Burnside’s dramatised song performance The Lads in their Hundreds. She then made her dramatic debut as Miss Julie in a Strindberg performance project devised and directed by Polly Graham at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. Another project was also a staged version of Handel’s Cantata La Lucrezia directed by Jenny Miller.

Roles include Pamina and Papagena Die Zauberflo?te, Despina Cosi? fan tutte, Belinda Dido & Aeneas, Oscar A Masked Ball, Musetta La Bohe?me, Morgana Alcina, Che?rubin Les Noces de Figaro and Venus Venus & Adonis. Aure?lia is also at ease with the French Operetta genre and has appeared as Germaine Les Cloches de Corneville and Laurette Le Docteur Miracle. In 2016 she will be performing the title role in La Pe?richole for Ope?ra de Bauge?, France. Aure?lia was a finalist in the 11th International Singing Competition in Canari, Corsica.

On the concert platform, Aure?lia enjoys portraying the song repertoire such as Brahms’s Liebeslieder Walzer Op. 52, Spohr’s Sechs Deutsche Lieder Op. 103, Poulenc’s Fianc?ailles pour rire and Argento’s Six Elizabethan Songs. Further solo performances include Charpentier’s Te Deum, Bach’s Magnificat, Handel’s Messiah and Jephtha, Haydn’s The Creation, Mozart’s Requiem and Exsultate jubilate and Respighi’s Lauda per la Nativita? del Signore. She has also appeared twice on the BBC Radio 3 In Tune programme.

Kelvin Lim trained at the RCM and ENO, and studied with Phillip Thomas. He has worked as repetiteur for English National Opera, (Magic Flute, Salome, Madame Butterfly, Xerxes, Billy Budd) Opera Genesis/ROH2 (development Bird of Night, Assassin Tree, Letters of a Love Betrayed, Exposure), Opera Holland Park (Carmen, La Boheme, Tosca, La Traviata, Nabucco, Fanciulla del West, Madama Butterflychorus master), English Touring Opera (Eugene Onegin, L’Infedelta delusa, Teseo), Longborough (Das Rheingold, Die Walkure), Mid-Wales Opera (Falstaff, Les Contes D’Hoffman, Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Opera Project (Marriage of Figaro), Royal Academy of Music (Magic Flute cond Colin Davis), Mastersingers (Der Ring des Niblungen, Parsifal, Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg, Lohengrin), Bampton Classical (Marriage of Figaro, Le Pescatrici, Leonora, Don Giovanni, Barber of Seville, Capriccioso Correter, Jewel Box, La Vera Costanza, Falstaff), Co-Opera Co (La Boheme), Central School of Speech and Drama (Sweeney Todd), Dorset Opera (Cavelleria Rusticana, I Pagliacci, Russlan & Ludmilla), Tete-a-Tete (Push!), Broomhill (Il Trittico, dir Simon Callow), and Aldeburgh.

Kelvin Lim is Co-Director of Postgraduate Opera at Trinity College of Music, where he assisted Stueart Bedford (Albert Herring). He has also been Assistant conductor for Co-Opera Co (Albert Herring), Musical Director for: King’s Head Theatre (I Pagliacci), English Opera Singers (Macbeth), Opera Brava (Carmen, Madama Butterfly), Bampton Classical (L’Infedelta Delusa), and Central School of Speech and Drama, (Company!, Jerry Springer the Opera, Mystery of Edwin Drood). Kelvin was repetiteur for the Opera Genesis Program at Royal Opera House and for Glyndebourne. He has been Conductor for rehearsals of Magic Flute and Opera Scenes at Royal Academy of Music, official accompanist for the Wagner Society and was the first UK pianist to be awarded the Bayreuth Bursary Prize.

He has worked for John Tomlinson, Anne Evans, Mary Plazas, Anthony Rolf-Johnson, Elizabeth Connell, Sir Donald McIntyre, Jeffrey Talbot, Ludmilla Andrew, Russell Smythe, played for private coachings for Joyce DiDonato, Magdalena Koczena, Gerald Finlay and Graham Clark, and in masterclass with Antonio Pappano, John Tomlinson, Gwyneth Jones, Barry Banks, Sarah Walker, Malcolm Martineau and Diana Montague. He has regularly broadcast on BBC Radio 3, and performed at The Linbury, London Coliseum, Recital Hall Royal Academy of Music, St James Piccadilly, St John Smiths Sq, Jubilee Hall in Aldeburgh, Buxton, Warwick, Winchester and Salisbury Festivals, as well as in Jerez and Granada. Engagements in 2010: CREAR scholar (with Malcolm Martineau), Exposure for ROH2 (Linbury Theatre), repetiteur for Aldeburgh Music, accompanist for the Goodall Academy (Anne Evans, John Tomlinson), Solo recital of Liszt/Wagner transcriptions and an all-Wagner recital with Sir John Tomlinson. He was also member of the contemporary six-piano chamber group Piano Circus.

Future engagements include: Siegfried for Longborough Festival Opera, Magic Flute for Co-Opera-Co. Kelvin also has upcoming lieder and solo recitals in London and Aldeburgh, with James Rutherford (Hans Sachs for Bayreuth) for the Wagner Society and Mastersingers.

After graduating, Joy Mammen joined the Australian Opera as principal soprano. Her studies continued in Germany with Frederick Husler and Yvonne Rodd-Marling, and during this time she joined Aechen Opera and appeared as a guest artist throughout Europe. She returned to Australia for the Sutherland Williamson season at the Australian Opera where she sang La Traviata, L’Elisir d’Amore, La Sonnambula, as well as Eugene Onegin and Faust. She remained in Australia for the Williamson Theatres as well as appearing on TV and the ABC. Following this, Mammen moved back to London, teaching singing at the Royal Academy of Music and singing in opera and concert in Europe, the USA and Australia.

Nigel Whitmey trained at Studio 58 in Vancouver and at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London. Since leaving RADA he has worked continually in film, television and theatre. His diverse work includes filming Saving Private with Steven Spielberg, Jefferson in Paris and Surviving Picasso for Merchant Ivory.

On television he appeared in numerous programmes Dr.Who, Waking the Dead, Hustle, Casualty and Shackleton, which filmed in Greenland. In London his theatre work has included the Royal Court, Young Vic, Gate and Tricycle. Most influential has been three years theatre work with Mike Alfred’s founder of Method Madness and Shared Experience. Nigel has voiced documentaries, books and games. He writes, directs and teaches acting.

German tenor Norbert Meyn is equally at home singing baroque, classical and contemporary music. 

As a concert soloist he has appeared at the Barbican Hall, the South Bank Centre, St. John’s Smith Square and the Royal Albert Hall in London, also at Usher Hall in Edinburgh, the Halle International Handel Festival, the Utrecht Festival of Early Music, with the Salzburg Bach Choir and in the Bach Cantata Pilgrimage of the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra, with conductors including Sir Roger Norrington, Howard Arman, Simon Halsey, Phillip Pickett and Sir John Eliot Gardiner. 

Selected operatic roles are: Don Ottavio (Mozart, Don Giovanni), Almaviva (Rossini, Il Barbiere di Sevilla), Podesta (Mozart, La Finta Giadiniera), Don Giovanni (Gazzaniga, title role), Damon (Handel, Acis and Galathea), Magnus (Maxwell-Davies, The Martyrdom of St. Magnus) and Abaris (Rameau, Les Boreades). He also sang the role of Bernardo in a feature film of the Goethe-Singspiel Erwin und Elmire (Anna Amalia) by Michael Dominski (ZDF Theaterkanal 2010).

CD recordings include Bach cantatas for Soli Deo Gloria, Engel Lund’s Book of Folk Songs for Nimbus Records, Schubert Lieder with Eugene Asti for SFZ Music and Spiritual Songs by C.P.E. Bach for Toccata Classics.

He has also performed, toured and recorded extensively with ensembles like the New London Consort, European Voices, Le Concert d’Astree, the Choir of the Enlightenment, London Voices and Trinity Baroque.

Norbert Meyn was born in the German city of Weimar. After studying music and singing in Dresden, Riga and Weimar, he moved to the UK in 1997 to study at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama. Since 2001 Norbert Meyn has been a professor there, and since 2005 also at the Royal College of Music, where he teaches German Lieder classes. He lives in London with his wife and two children.

Natalie Murray studied at the Sydney Conservatorium, the Guildhall School and the National Opera Studio. She is a professor at the RCM and opera coach to the Jette Parker Young Artist Programme (ROH) and the National Opera Studio.

Natalie began her career on the music staff of the Welsh National Opera and continues her association with them as a guest artist. She has also worked for Glyndebourne Festival Opera, ETO, Savoy Opera, Opera Holland Park and the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World. Natalie is the 2007 Conducting Scholar for the London Symphony Chorus and has assisted Rinaldo Alessandrini, Nicholas Kok, Peter Robinson and James MacMillan. She recently conducted 20 Women Singing for the WNO.

Gavin Roberts began his musical education as a Chorister at Magdalen College, Oxford. He went on to read Music at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, where he also held the organ scholarship. Following this, Gavin gained a Master’s degree from King’s College London. Since 2002, Gavin has held the position of Assistant Director of Music at St Marylebone Parish Church where he accompanies and directs the church’s professional choir.

Gavin is in demand as a soloist and accompanist on both the organ and piano. Concert engagements have taken him to many prestigious venues in the UK and abroad. He is Associate Director and Accompanist for the Chandos Chamber Choir and Dorking Choral Society. He also plays regularly for The Hanover Band, Kensington Symphony Orchestra, Orpheus Britannicus, The Joyful Company of Singers, EXAUDI, Eastern Opera, Riverside Opera, The Orlando Chamber Choir, Londinium, Tiffin Boys’ Choir and The Guildford Chamber Choir.

Gavin Roberts actively pursues his interest in chamber performance with a number of instrumentalists and singers. He is currently studying with Andrew West for a Masters in Piano Accompaniment at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, on a scholarship supported by the Guildhall School Trust. Here he has won the ‘Titanic’ and ‘Creative Voices’ Prizes for Piano Accompaniment. He has received tuition from Graham Johnson, Pamela Bullock, Eugene Asti, Sarah Walker, Iain Burnside and Martin Katz.

English conductor Robin Newton’s rapidly developing career has seen him work with many renowned opera companies and orchestras including the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Den Nye Oper, English National Opera, Opera North, English Touring Opera, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the Philharmonia Orchestra, the Northern Chamber Orchestra and the London Mozart Players.

The 2013/14 season sees Robin make his Welsh National Opera début with Donizetti’s Maria Stuarda, his concert début with the Salomon Orchestra, and returns to both the Bergen National Opera for Fidelio, and Chelsea Opera Group for Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, London, and has further projects with Opera Rara.

Recent seasons have seen Robin make several notable débuts including Verdi’s Aida for Raymond Gubbay at the Royal Albert Hall with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, La Forza del Destino at the Queen Elizabeth Hall with Chelsea Opera Group, and Marcos Portugal’s La pazza giornata, ovvero Il matrimonio di Figaro for Bampton Classical Opera at the Buxton Festival. Further highlights includeDido&Aeneas for Opera North, the world première of Stephen McNeff’s Daughters of the Elements at the Tête á Tête Opera Festival, Rossini’s Armida with the Haydn Chamber Orchestra at St. John’s Smith Square, London with the Haydn Chamber Orchestra, Don Giovanni for Opera Della Luna, The Glory of Christmas at Watford Coliseum for Raymond Gubbay ltd., Mozart arias & Dvo?ák Symphony No.6 with Oxford Sinfonia and as assistant conductor for Opera Rara’s recordings of Donizetti’s Caterina Cornaro and Belisario with the BBC Symphony Orchestra.

Having worked on more than twenty recordings for Opera Rara, Robin has a deep understanding of the bel canto style, and an extensive knowledge of operas by Bellini, Donizetti, Mercadante andRossini, amongst others. In recent years Robin has also established an important relationship with Garsington Opera, where performance credits include Mozart’s Il Re Pastore & Die Zauberflöte and Beethoven’s Fidelio. He has also worked closely on both operatic and symphonic works with Maurizio Benini, Ji?í B?lohlávek, Yves Abel, and Andrew Litton.

Robin has a music degree with honours from Cambridge University and studied conducting at the Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester where he twice received the Recordi Prize for conducing opera.

As Music Director of Preston Opera and Hampstead Garden Opera, Robin Newton has conducted many repertoire pieces including Carmen, Don Giovanni, La traviata, Nabucco, Eugene Onegin, Cavalleria rusticana, The Bartered Bride and Macbeth.

Contemporary music is a vital part of Robin’s work. He is music director of e2K, with whom he has given a number of UK and world premieres. Recently, Robin was responsible for the commission of a new opera by Philip Cashian, which was premiered in autumn 2008.

Future plans include a recording of Maria di Rohan (Opera Rara, assisting Sir Mark Elder), Alceste (chorus master, Chelsea Opera Group), Il pirata and Armida (assisting David Parry) and La bohème (Den Nye Oper, assisting Andrew Litton).

Robin Norton-Hale is the joint Artistic Director of OperaUpClose. A director, translator & producer, Robin studied English at Oxford University and trained at The King’s Head Theatre on their Resident Assistant Director programme.

Opera directing credits include: La Boheme (OperaUpClose); The Barber of Seville(OperaUpClose); Spirit of Vienna (English Touring Opera); Pimpinone (Colourhouse Theatre); Revival Director on Ariodante (English Touring Opera); Assistant Director on Katya Kabonova and The Abduction from the Seraglio (both English Touring Opera). Theatre directing credits include: Best Man Speech (UK tour), Live Canon (Northcott and Greenwich Theatres) and Pick ‘n’ Myths (Lyric Hammersmith and UK tour); Associate Director on Cloudcuckooland (Edinburgh Fringe, UK and European Tour) and Assistant Director on Sweet Charity (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane).

William Relton made his professional debut as an actor in 1971 in Rattigan’s “The Winslow Boy” in the West End. He went on to develop his career in television and theatre. His major roles include Cherubin (Beaumarchais’s “The Marriage of Figaro”) at the National Theatre, Bernstein’s Candide (“Candide”) and Tony (“West Side Story”), Gilbert’s/Sullivan’s Marco (“The Gondoliers”) and Ralph Rackstraw (“HMS Pinafore”), Hamlet (Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”), Wilfred Owen in the one-man play “All The Arts of Hurting”, Kenneth (Berlin’s “Call Me Madam”), etc. His operatic roles include Mozart’s Don Ottavio (“Don Giovanni”), Basilio (“Le nozze di Figaro”) and Ferrando (“Così fan tutte”) as well as Tisbe (Rossini’s “La Cenerentola”, a production that cast men in the roles of sisters). Recently he has played the Haushofmeister in R. Strauss’ “Ariadne auf Naxos” at Glyndebourne and the Frankfurt Opera. On television he appeared in many plays and series including “Clayhanger”, “Play for Today”, “The Lost Boys” and “Degrees of Error”. Film work includes “Beauty and the Beast”, “The Great Gastby” and “Slumdog Millionaire”.

In 1991 he joined Music Theatre London, an opera company that casts actors with good singing voices, as opposed to classically trained opera singers. He also worked as Executive Producer for the company over three years producing tours for the Vienna Festival, Germany, Holland and in the UK. He has been an assistant director at Opera North (1994–97) and at the English National Opera (1998–2001). For some years he worked very closely with Co-Opera Company and was in charge of Touring Operations and Education, producing tours and organising community education projects. Currently he is Artistic Director of Opera Forge, an ambitious new company with plans to mount Wagner’s “Ring des Nibelungen” over the next three years.

In 1993 he made his debut as a stage director with Mozart’s “Così fan tutte”. Since then he has directed all over the UK and Europe: English National Opera, l’Opera de Nice, Dorset Opera, Kongelige Teater, Copenhagen, Oslo Opera House, Drottingholms Slottstheater, Staatstheater Darmstadt among many others. His most recent productions include Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen” (2013), Mozart’s “Don Giovanni”, “Die Zauberflöte” and “La finta giardiniera” (all in 2012), Pergolesi’s “La serva padrona” (2012), Bizet’s “Carmen” and Humperdinck’s “Hänsel und Gretel” (both in 2011), Rossini’s “La gazza ladra” (2010), Puccini’s “La bohème”, Leoncavallo’s “Pagliacci”, Mascagni’s “Cavalleria rusticana”, Offenbach’s “Les Contes d’Hoffmann” and Händel’s “Alessandro” (all in 2009), Bizet’s “Les Pêcheurs de perles”, Stravinsky’s “The Rake’s Progress”, Haydn’s “Il mondo della luna”, Britten’s “The Rape of Lucretia” (all in 2008), etc. William Relton has spent much of his time directing and teaching in opera schools in the UK and in Scandinavia. In the UK he has directed productions and/or scenes at most of the principal opera schools, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow, Royal Academy of Music, Royal College of Music and National Opera Studio in London, and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff. In Scandinavia he has worked extensively at the Opera Acadamy of the Royal Theatre in Copenhagen and also at Operahogskolan in Stockholm, the Opera School in Göteborg and KHIO in Oslo.

Arlene Rolph studied at The Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, The Royal College of Music, London and the National Opera Studio. After receiving a distinction in her Masters degree in Opera she was the recipient of many wards including the Richard Lewis/Jean Shanks Award from Glyndebourne Festival Opera and won second place in the Kathleen Ferrier competition at the Wigmore Hall. She was associate artist at Welsh National Opera from 2003-2005.

Arlene enjoys an international career having appeared at the Glyndebourne Festival, Frankfurt Oper, Theater and der Wien, Staatsoper Berlin, Scottish Opera, Welsh National Opera. Grange Park Opera, English Touring Opera, Music Theatre Wales and the Batignano Festival, Italy. 

She has sung under the baton of Carlo Rizzi, Diego Masson, Carlo Franci, Maurizio Barbacini, David Hill, Rene Jacobs, Rinaldo Alessendrini and Richard Farnes. She has been directed by Neil Armfield, David McVicar, Anthony MacDonald, Elaine Kidd, Deborah Warner, John La Bouchardiere, Michael McCarthy, David Hermann and Dale Duesing. She has sung at many high profile concert venues and specialises in new music and contemporary opera. She created and premiered the roles of Jane Claremont/Monster by Sally Beamish. Mother/White by Gareth Williams and Mother/The Letter by Khodosh all for Scottish Opera. For Music Theatre Wales created the roles of Woman/Crime Fiction by Huw Watkins, Mother Superior/Gloria in “Letters of a Love Betrayed” by Eleanor Alberga and the title role of Julie by Philippe Boesmanns. She took the lead role in Michael Berkeley and Ian McEwan’s opera “For You” and has workshopped new works with in association with Covent Garden. 

Alongside her performance career Arlene is very active in creating and progressing educational and inspirational music projects. She co-directed and co- founded the award winning contemporary opera company NOISE (New Opera in Scotland Events) which commissions and produces new opera in Scotland.  She is a vocal teacher at her own practice in Brighton, in schools across Sussex and Kent, at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts and has taught on the opera course at the Royal Conservatoire for Scotland. 

Arlene co-directed and co-produced an empowerment forum for singers at Tête à Tête: The Opera Festival, London in August 2012 bringing the global community of opera singers together to inspire success, survival, employability and solvency in the classical music industry. Through focusing on the unique individuality of the artist, business skills and performance techniques, Arlene now runs Vocal Entrepreneur, one to one career coaching, group CPD and products for voice users in the 21st century performing arts. 

Pianist Elizabeth Rossiter studied at the Royal Northern College of Music, gaining both Bachelors’ and Masters’ degrees, many prizes and a major scholarship, and where she became the Junior Fellow in accompaniment.

She continued her postgraduate training on the accompanist course at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, graduating with Distinction, and where she became Accompaniment Fellow. During her time at Guildhall she studied with Paul Roberts, Eugene Asti and Charles Owen and was supported by awards from the Musicians’ Benevolent Fund, Thomas Wall Trust, the Cordwainers Company, and the Tobacco Pipe Makers’ Salzman Award. She was then répétiteur for the Guildhall Opera Course, supported by the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers, The Music Students’ Hostel Trust and Norman Mims CBE and Heike Mims, and in July 2011 completed her time as Associate Trainee Répétiteur at the National Opera Studio, supported by an Alan Beurrier Bursary.

Competition successes include the Pianists’ Prize at the Patricia Routledge National English Song Competition, the Concordia Serena Nevill Prize, Second Prize in the Chelsea Schubert Festival Song Duo Prize and the Queen Mary II Accompaniment Prize for English Song at Guildhall School. She is a Samling Scholar, a Park Lane Group Young Artist and a Britten-Pears Young Artist.

Elizabeth Rossiter has performed widely throughout the UK and the rest of Europe. Venues have included the Wigmore, Barbican, and Bridgewater Halls, the Sage Gateshead and recitals at both the Queen Elizabeth Hall and the Purcell Room for the Park Lane Group. She has given recitals in The Crush Room at the Royal Opera House, The Holywell Music Room, Oxford, the Edinburgh Fringe, St. Martin in the Fields and a Composer Focus Prom in the Proms in the Albert Hall, broadcast live on BBC Radio 3, has performed on Radio 3’s programme ‘In Tune’, and at Kings Place. She is also the official accompanist for the National Mozart Singing Competition.
She was the pianist for BBC TV’s film This Little Life, for both series of Granada TV’s The Forsyte Saga and the Channel 4 documentary Churchill’s Mother. She has had regular coaching from Graham Johnson and Iain Burnside and also Roger Vignoles, Helmut Deutsch, Bengt Forsberg, Sir Thomas Allen and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa.

The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung said of her “from the beginning a remarkable musical talent and sensitive feel for the music showed clearly from Elizabeth Rossiter’s recital…”

In addition to her varied playing career, Elizabeth Rossiter very much enjoys teaching, both at the Guildhall School and privately.

Fiona Jane Schopf is Director of Opera Studies at Rose Bruford College. Previously she was lecturer in music at the University of Birmingham’s Lifelong Learning Centre following a performing career in America. She has lectured widely throughout the UK and has published chapters and articles on Wagner (“Senta, a reappraisal” in Wagner, Vol. 17, No. 3, Stewart Spencer, (Ed.), 1996; “Die Feen – Cutting Teeth or Cutting Edge?” in Wagner, Vol. 20, No. 2, Spencer, (Ed.), 1999; “Hagiography or realism: Wagner bio-pics” in Composers on Screen, Paul Fryer (Ed.), MacFarland, 2016) and Krenek (“Musical Responses to Lamentations” in Great is Thy Faithfulness, Robin A. Parry and Heath A. Thomas, (Eds.) Wipf and Stock, 2011). She founded and runs the “Music on Stage” conferences at Rose Bruford and edits the published papers (Studies in Musical Theatre, 4.1, Intellect Press, 2010; Music on Stage, Cambridge Scholars Press, 2015, and the forthcoming Music on Stage 2, 2016).

Born in Johannesburg, Alessandro Talevi studied Music and History of Art at the University of the Witwatersrand before completing a postgraduate performance diploma in vocal accompaniment at the Royal Academy of Music.

He was a prizewinner at the 2007 European Opera-Directing Prize in Wiesbaden for his concept of Rusalka , and was recently made an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music. His production of Pelléas et Mélisande at Sadler’s Wells was a shortlist nomination for the 2008 Royal Philharmonic Society awards.

With the generous support of William and Judith Bollinger, Alessandro Talevi was the artistic director of Independent Opera at Sadler’s Wells, for which he directed Pelléas et Mélisande, The Sofa/The Departure, Orlando and La scala di seta.

Recent work includes The Turn of the Screw (Opera North), The Barber of Baghdad (Buxton Festival), La Cenerentola (Malmö Opera), Il Trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno and Partenope (Opéra les Azuriales), L’assedio di Calais, The Marriage/La cambiale di matrimonio, L’occasione fa il ladro/La Colombe (all for the Guildhall School of Music and Drama) and La Fedeltà Premiata (Royal Academy of Music).

He has also revived Teatro la Fenice’s production of Ariadne auf Naxos in Bolzano and Lucca, and Peter Grimes at the Teatro San Carlo in Naples.