On Saturday 24 April the great lyric soprano Amanda Roocroft spent an afternoon with three of the 2021 Opera Holland Park Young Artists, giving masterclasses on music by Mozart and Strauss. Filmed by Simon Wall, and accompanied by the YA répétiteur Thomas Ang, Amanda worked with soprano Isabelle Peters and bass baritone Alex Jones on arias from Der Rosenkavalier and The Marriage of Figaro.
The film offers captivating insights into the complex business of combining vocal technique, musicality, physicality, imagination and stagecraft to create a compelling character in song. As Amanda brings empathy, wit and a wealth of experience to a rapid learning process, Thomas demonstrates the subtlety and strength required of a répétiteur. Available to watch online from Friday 14 May, this is a delightful behind-the-scenes document of life as an Opera Holland Park Young Artist in the tenth year of the training scheme.
Opera Holland Park’s 2021 Season opens 1 June with a new production of The Marriage of Figaro, featuring five alumni of the company’s Young Artists programme: director Oliver Platt, conductor George Jackson, sopranos Nardus Williams and Claire Lees, and baritone Julien Van Mellaerts.
The Opera Holland Park Young Artists Performances of The Marriage of Figaro will take place on 14 and 26 June. The casting is as follows:
Associate Conductor Lada Valešová
Associate Director Rebecca Meltzer
Répétiteur Thomas Ang
Count Almaviva Jacob Phillips
Countess Almaviva Siân Dicker
Susanna Charlotte Bowden
Figaro Jolyon Loy
Cherubino Charlotte Badham
Marcellina Hannah Bennett
Bartolo Alex Jones
Basilio/Don Curzio Guy Withers
Barbarina Isabelle Peters
With Henry Grant Kerswell as Antonio, Naomi Kilby as First Bridesmaid and Susie Buckle as Second Bridesmaid
Opera Holland Park’s Young Artists Scheme was founded in 2011 with the support of the late philanthropist Christine Collins. More than 100 creatives and artists have passed through the scheme since then, going on to establish their careers with other companies, and returning to Opera Holland Park as principal artists and leading creatives. The scheme is designed to identify and nurture emerging talent, and offers dedicated rehearsal time, a sitzprobe with City of London Sinfonia, and stage time that is crucial for developing talent.
The Young Artists are generously supported by The Young Artists Circle, CHK Foundation, Cockayne – Grants for the Arts, G & K Boyes Charitable Trust, The Garrick Charitable Trust, The Golsoncott Foundation, The Idlewild Trust, The Leche Trust, Lord and Lady Lurgan Trust, The London Community Foundation, The Radcliffe Trust and those who wish to remain anonymous.
The Young Artists Masterclass is available to view on YouTube here and on Facebook here.