Introducing some of the fantastic performers for our next Opera Evening:
Catherine May (soprano) comes from Canada and studied as a Peter Moores Scholar at the Royal Northern College of Music. She has performed with Scottish Opera, Mid-Wales Opera, English Touring Opera, Garsington Opera, Diva Opera, British Youth Opera, and with Aldeburgh Productions in roles ranging from Mozart (Queen of the Night, Pamina, Blonde), through Puccini (Mimí), to Strauss (Zerbinetta) and Offenbach (Olympia/Antonia/Giulietta, Eurydice). Catherine is highly regarded for her interpretations of contemporary music, having appeared in The Wind in the Willows and Pinocchio, devised by Will Tuckett at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and covering Pretty Polly/Punch & Judy (Birtwistle) and Cunegonde/Candide (Bernstein) for English National Opera. Catherine has appeared in concert with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Norwich Philharmonic, and with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, and has recorded with the Academy of St Thomas under conductor, Christopher Adey. During summer 2015 Catherine is one of the title role women in BAKKHAI at the Almeida Theatre, directed by James Macdonald.
Wendy Dawn Thompson (mezzo-soprano) hails from New Zealand, and studied at Victoria University of Wellington, the Royal Northern College of Music, and the Royal College of Music. She won the 2003 Kathleen Ferrier Prize and represented NZ in the final of the 2005 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World. She has given recitals in all the major UK concert halls, and has appeared in the BBC Proms, the Edinburgh International Festival, and Aldeburgh Festivals. Wendy made her Royal Opera House, Covent Garden début as an Innocent in the world première of The Minotaur (Birtwistle). She has performed with English National Opera, Birmingham Opera Company, Garsington Opera, Buxton Opera, Opera Australia, and NBR NZ Opera and, most recently, with Opéra National de Lorraine and the National Opera of Portugal in Lisbon. Her repertoire ranges from Handel and Mozart through to Massenet, Mahler and Strauss. She recorded Love for Three Oranges under Richard Hickox (Chandos), and has appeared in concert with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, and with the NZ Symphony Orchestra. During 2015 Wendy will perform Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde with pianist, Peter Donohoe, and will appear as the alto soloist in Messiah in New Zealand.
Eamonn Mulhall (tenor) trained at the Royal College of Music and the National Opera Studio. He has performed Handel’s Messiah at the Royal Albert Hall, Puccini’s Messa di Gloria with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra, and has appeared with the Irish Baroque Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Ulster Orchestra, Irish Chamber Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, and the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra in repertoire ranging from Bach’s Matthäus-Passion, through Mendelssohn’s Elijah, to Britten’s Saint Nicholas. Operatic engagements include the world première performances of Clemency (MacMillan) for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and Scottish Opera at the Edinburgh International Festival directed by Katie Mitchell OBE, Count Almaviva/The Barber of Seville for English National Opera, Belmonte/Die Entführung aus dem Serail and Ferrando/Così fan tutte for Welsh National Opera, the eponymous role in Dorian Gray at the Slovak National Opera. He has performed several roles for Ireland’s Opera Theatre Company, Opera North, and Grange Park Opera.
Peter Willcock (baritone) was raised in Worcestershire and trained in London. He has performed as a soloist, chorister, and education facilitator for Opera North, Grange Park Opera, ROH2, Opera Brava, Garsington Opera, Tête-a-Tête Festival, Pimlico Opera, Unicorn Children’s Theatre, and Streetwise Opera. Roles include Owl/The Owl and the Pussycat (world premiere) in the 2012 Secret London Festival, Rover and Chairman/A Doctor’s Tale for OperaShots at the Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House, Monterone/Rigoletto and Sid and Billy Jackrabbit/La Fanciulla del West for Grange Park Opera, and Dulcamara/L’elisir d’amore, Aeneas/Dido and Aeneas, Escamillo and Zuniga/Carmen, and Papageno/Die Zauberflöte. He has appeared as a concert soloist in works by Bach, Handel, Haydn and Rossini, and the Requiems of Mozart, Brahms, Fauré and Duruflé.
Lindy Tennent-Brown (piano/music director) studied with Margaret Fingerhut at the Royal Northern College of Music, and held Junior Fellowships at the RNCM, and at the Royal College of Music in London. She won the 2000 NZ National Piano Competition and made her début at Wigmore Hall accompanying Anne Murray, DBE, in 2004. Since then, Lindy has established a number of successful partnerships with singers and instrumentalists, and is one half of the prize-winning longfordbrown piano duo. Lindy has worked as music staff for, among others, English National Opera, Aldeburgh Productions, Glyndebourne Productions, the Barbican, and several West End musicals. She has worked extensively on the development of new opera and music theatre, and was the Music Director of EXPOSURE, a cabaret-scratch night of new opera at the Linbury Theatre, Royal Opera House 2010-13. Most recently, Lindy was Music Director for BAKKHAI at the Almeida Theatre, with new music by Orlando Gough. Lindy is a co-founder of Blind Tiger Productions and maintains a busy vocal coaching studio in London.