31 March 2023

News from Samling Artists – March 2023

BBC Cardiff Singer of the World

Once again, Samling Artists have been selected for the finals of BBC Cardiff Singer of the World, with mezzo-soprano Beth Taylor representing Scotland and bass William Thomas chosen for England. The finals run from Saturday 10 June to Sunday 18 June and will all be available on the BBC. We wish Beth and William all the best for the finals, as they follow in the footsteps of previous Samling Artist winners, including 2017 winner Catriona Morison last year’s Audience Prize winner, Claire Barnett-Jones.

Cardiff Singer of the World

William Thomas also made his Japanese debut this month as Colline La Bohème with the Seiji Ozawa Music Academy in Kyoto, Tokyo and Aichi.

Competition Successes

Both of the pianists who attended our most recent Samling Artist Programme in March 2023 have been celebrating competition wins. Ella O’Neill joined us at Marchmont House straight from Heidelberg where her duo partner Laurence Kilsby took joint-first prize in the Heidelberger Frühling ‘Das Lied’ competition. Emily Hoh has been awarded the collaborative piano prize at the Royal Over-Seas League Annual Music Competition, selected from the pianists across all the singer and instrumental category finals. Emily accompanied fellow Samling Artist Dafydd Jones in the song final.

Annabel Kennedy continues a run of success, finishing her time at the Royal College of Music by winning the RCM Brooks van der Pump English Song Prize.

We also send our best wishes to tenor Dafydd Jones in the semi-finals of the Kathleen Ferrier Awards on Tuesday 18 April.

Wigmore Hall

Wigmore Hall have announced their 2023/24 autumn season, which sees Louise Alder and Ema Nikolovska named among the Hall’s Artists in Residence for the season. Louise gives a recital of French song with Joseph Middleton, the Doric String Quartet and a quintet of leading wind players on Thursday 23 November and Ema gives a recital with Kunal Lahiry on Sunday 26 November.

We are delighted to be providing Wigmore Hall debuts to Bethany Horak-Hallett and Ted Black appearing in our Samling Artist Showcase ‘Conversation Pieces’ on Tuesday 7 November, alongside Harriet Burns, James Newby, Ian Tindale and Krystal Tunnicliffe.

Concerts announced for September to December 2023 also include Samling Artists Benjamin Appl, James Baillieu, Michael Bell, Libby Burgess, Harriet Burns, Lucy Crowe, Ruby Hughes, Dafydd Jones, Jerome Knox, Joseph Middleton, James Newby and Ian Tindale.

On Monday 3 April, Kunal Lahiry‘s lunchtime recital with Fleur Barron will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 and repeated on Sunday 9 April.

Opera Holland Park

Shakira Tsindos, Emily Christina Loftus and Edward Kim are among those who have been selected as Opera Holland Park Young Artists. The Young Artists production this year will be Hänsel und Gretel, with Shakira and Emily in the title roles and Edward singing the role of Peter.

Opera North

The preliminary season announcement for Opera North’s autumn/winter season next year includes Andri Björn Róbertsson making his company debut in a new production Masque of Might with music by Purcell, directed by David Pountney and conducted by Harry Bicket. The cast also includes Patrick Terry.

Other Samling Artists appearing in Opera North’s productions next season:

La Rondine: Galina Averina (Magda) and Claire Lees (Lisette)

Albert Herring: cast includes Amy Freston and Dominic Sedgwick

In a double bill of one-act operas by Mascagni and Rachmaninoff,  Andrés Presno sings Turiddù (Cavalleria rusticana) and Young Lover (Aleko) and Elin Pritchard is Zemfira (Aleko).

And a pair of Samling Artists who appropriately share a surname take the roles of the two sisters in Così fan tutte with Alexandra Lowe as Fiordiligi and Heather Lowe as Dorabella.

Garsington Opera

Garsington Opera have announced their 2023 summer season:

Il barbiere di Siviglia: Johannes Kammler (Figaro)
Mitridate, re di Ponto: Joshua Owen Mills (Marzio)
Ariadne auf Naxos: Jennifer France (Zerbinetta) and Claire Lees (Naiad)
The Bartered Bride: Pumeza Matshikiza (Mařenka)

New releases

Lucy Crowe and Claire Barnett-Jones appear on ‘The Jade Mountain’ the first complete recording of Edmund Rubbra’s songs, and including some songs never previously recorded.

Jocelyn Freeman has a new album out of songs and instrumental music inspired by Pushkin, including a new version of Britten’s The Poet’s Echo for soprano, piano and cello.

Joseph Middleton joins soprano Mary Bevan on ‘Visions Illuminées’, a new album of French song, by composers including Britten, Ravel, Debussy and Fauré.