01 November 2023

News from Samling Artists – October 2023

Next week, on Tuesday 7 November, Bethany Horak-Hallett and Ted Black make their Wigmore Hall debuts as part of our Samling Artist Showcase ‘Conversation Pieces’.

This follows an exciting month for both singers. Bethany made her Carnegie Hall debut on tour with the Monteverdi Choir and Ted had a star-studded role debut at Wiener Staatsoper, singing Roderigo in Otello alongside Jonas Kaufmann, Rachel Willis-Sørensen and Ludovic Tézier.

Image: Ted Black in Otello, photo credit: Wiener Staatsoper/Michael Pöhn. 

Role and house debuts

Benjamin Hulett and William Thomas both made their debuts at La Scala this month in Peter Grimes, with Benjamin as Rev Horace Adams and William as Hobson.

Jamie Woollard made his Royal Opera House main stage debut as a Jette Parker Artist in Rigoletto and Nicky Spence made his role debut as Loge in Das Rheingold at La Monnaie de Munt, Belgium.

Lauren Fagan makes her Opera Australia debut in Sydney Opera House in July 2024 in the title role of Suor Angelica as part of Puccini’s Il trittico. Another artist returning for a debut on home ground is Ema Nikolovska making her first appearance with Canadian Opera Company as Fox The Cunning Little Vixen.

You can hear Ema in conversation with Jess Gillam on BBC Radio 3’s This Classical Life – broadcast on Saturday 28 October and available on BBC Sounds for 30 days.

Garsington Opera

Garsington have announced their season for summer 2024:

Bethany Horak-Hallett makes her role debut as Cherubino, alongside Samantha Clarke as Countess in Le nozze di Figaro.

Lucy Crowe is Tytania and James Newby (also appearing in next week’s Showcase) is Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Jennifer France appears in Garsington’s community opera project A Trip to the Moon by Andrew Norman.


Nick Pritchard appears on ‘Songs for Our Times’ – the first recording of songs by Bernard Hughes and Stuart MacRae setting texts by the Nigerian writer Chinwe D. John.

Jennifer France performs songs by Durparc, Wolf and Fauré on ‘Homelands’ an album of songs about exile, with Ian Bostridge, James Atkinson, Wonsick Oh, and pianist Aron Goldin.


Annabel Kennedy reached the finals of the LeidDuo International Vocal Competition ’s-Hertogenbosch with pianist Ana Manastireanu, where they won the Press Prize and the Junior Jury Prize.

Pianist Ilan Kurtser won this year’s Copenhagen Lied-Duo competition alongside baritone Johannes Moore.;

In this year’s International Opera Awards, Sally Matthews has been nominated for the Readers’ Award and Beth Taylor is shortlisted in the Young Singer category. The results will be announced on 9 November.

One to watch

Liam Bonthrone, who is currently a member of the Opera Studio at Bavarian National Opera, was featured in this month’s ‘Rising Stars’ spot in BBC Music Magazine.

Lucy Crowe also appears in this month’s edition, sharing memories of past recording projects in the magazine’s regular ‘Rewind’ feature.