OMTF // National Opera Studio
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Address:National Opera Studio
2 Chapel Yard
Wandsworth High Street
London SW18 4HZ  
Tel:+44 20 8874 8811
Kathryn HarriesDirector
Emily Gottleib**General Manager
Mark ShanahanHead of Music
Katya KazakevichArtistic Planning Manager
Nicholas ​Boyd-VaughanEngagement and Communications Manager
** main contact
Forty Years OnJan 2019
The National Opera Studio's celebratory year concludes with Opera in Concert performances in London and Edinburgh

In 2018 the National Opera Studio has been celebrating its 40th year with special events including the unique commissions of twelve arias for its students.  The celebrations conclude in 2019 with a partnership between the Studio, Scottish Opera and English National Opera.

Semi-staged scenes from operas by Donizetti, Britten, Beethoven, Bizet, Mozart and others will be directed by celebrated Irish director Orpha Phelan and for the first time accompanied by the ENO Orchestra, under the baton of British conductor Charles Peebles.

Following a performance at Chelsea’s Cadogan Hall, the production will transfer to Edinburgh's King's Theatre for a performance with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera on the set for the company’s new production, Anthropocene.

The National Opera Studio 40th Anniversary Concert can be seen at the Cadogan Hall, London on January 18 and at the King’s Theatre, Edinburgh on February 1.

Last DaysDec 2018
The National Opera Studio's last residency of the year marks the centenary of the end of World War I

The National Opera Studio has a regular December residency with Opera North, culminating in a performance accompanied by Members of the Orchestra of Opera North and conducted by the company's Head of Music, David Cowan. Following the performance in Leeds there is a London showing.

This year’s programme Last Days, devised and directed by Tim Albery, moves from the gaiety of pre-war Europe’s nightclubs into an apocalyptic vision of the War’s outbreak, the impact of the war on the men and women caught up in it and the increasingly shocking circumstances with raw and mournful songs and texts from Schoenberg, Berg, Satie, Ives, E.E Cummings, Elgar, Butterworth and Gurney, among others.

The National Opera Studio Young Artists, in collaboration with Opera North, will perform Tim Albery’s Last Days, at the Howard Assembly Room, Leeds on December 8, followed by a London showing at the Bridewell Theatre on December 10.

And Now For Something Completely DifferentJun 2018
The National Opera Studio and Second Movement team up to create new audition pieces

There can be a certain sameness about audition offerings: audition panels can be forgiven for sighing just a little when asked to listen to Die Zauberflöte yet again.  Plus, when the audition relates to a work in English or something contemporary - how easy is it to find suitable material? And how to find a piece that technically suits the voice and its stage of development?

Working with partner opera companies the National Opera Studio runs an intensive nine-month course to prepare young singers and repetiteurs for professional careers.  Contemporary work forms an important part of the programme and among the many skills singers are taught is the key matter of how to prepare for an audition.  This year the Studio reaches its 40th anniversary, and to celebrate has commissioned twelve composers and twelve librettists to collaborate with its young artists in the creation of twelve audition arias.

The project, 12:40, has been undertaken in partnership with Second Movement, a company which produces and curates Rough for Opera, a regular performance platform for new opera and work in development.  The arias, composed specially for each singer who will have been involved in the creative process from the outset, are designed to demonstrate the individuality of each singer's vocal talents and will be used in their audition repertoire for years to come.

The selected composer/librettist partnerships are: Na'ama Zisser/Samantha Newton, Cameron Dodds/Ruth Mariner, Tom Randle/Bechara Moufarrej, Bushra El Turk/Cordelia Lynn, Philip Venables/Ted Huffman, Lewis Murphy/Laura Attridge, Hannah Kendall/Tessa McWatt, Benjamin Tassie/Jacqueline Saphra, Samantha Fernando/Rebecca Hurst, Sally Beamish/Peter Thomson, Christian Mason/Oge Nwosu and Rosabella Gregory/Dina Soraya Gregory.

12:40, twelve arias commissioned by the National Opera Studio in partnership with Second Movement will be performed by the Studio’s young artists on June 14 and 15 at Hoxton Hall, London.

Broad Stripes and Bright StarsApr 2018
The National Opera Studio presents an evening of American opera

From Avner Dorman to Tobias Picker – this National Opera Studio showcase explores the American repertoire covering opera and music theatre, the well-known and the rarely seen, comedy and tragedy in an evening of scenes and arias woven into a semi-staged production directed by the celebrated British Opera director Keith Warner.

The eclectic selection of works includes Avner Dorman’s Ragtime, Ricky Ian Gordon’s The Grapes of Wrath, John Harbison’s The Great Gatsby, Stephen Sondheim’s Roadshow, Merrily We Roll Along and Company, Menotti’s The Consul, Tobias Picker’s Dolores Claiborne, and Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking.

The National Opera Studios’ Broad Stripes and Bright Stars is at St John's Smith Square on April 24.

From Russia With LoveFeb 2018
The National Opera Studio’s first residency of 2018 takes Russian classics to Scotland

Residencies for their young artists are now a regular feature of the National Opera Studio’s work.  This year’s trips begin in Glasgow with a week-long residency culminating in a semi-staged performance featuring Russian-themed repertoire.  Curated by Music Director Stuart Stratford it will be hosted by Scottish Opera and accompanied by the Orchestra of Scottish Opera.

The programme will include excerpts from Mussorgsky's Khovanshchina, Rimsky-Korsakov's The Golden Cockerel and the rarely heard Kashchey the Immortal.  Tchaikovsky will be represented by The Queen of Spades, Eugene Onegin and Cherevichki.

The National Opera Studio’s opera anthology National Opera Studio @ Scottish Opera: From Russian with Love in collaboration with Scottish Opera takes place at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow on February 25 and visits London in March.

The National Opera Studio Goes ForthDec 2017

HANDEL GOES NORTH. The National Opera Studio’s 2017 residency with Opera North features Handel

The National Opera Studio works closely with the national opera companies and in recent years students have had the opportunity of taking part in residencies with them.  This winter the Young Artists have been working once again with the orchestra and staff of Opera North to mount a showcase to be seen in both Leeds and London.  Handel is the chosen composer and scenes from Rodelinda, Giulio Cesare, Ariodante and Orlando are being directed by American director Christopher Alden and British Baroque conductor David Bates. 
National Opera Studio @ Opera North can be seen at the Howard Assembly Room, Leeds on December 8 and in a concert version in The Regent Hall, London, on December 12.

OPERA PASSION IN THE SOUTH The National Opera Studio joins in the celebrations for the London exhibition

To accompany the V&A’s exhibition Opera: Passion, Power and Politics the National Opera Studio has been providing a series of free weekly concerts, featuring current Young Artists and very special Alumni.  These began on November 2 and continue until the end of February when the exhibition closes.
Free National Opera Studio lunchtime concerts at the V&A, London, continue until February 22.

Dubai-Rostov-New York - Adventures in Faraway PlacesMay 2017
The National Opera Studio showcases new works by three celebrated female composers, Joanna Marsh, Elena Langer and Errollyn Wallen

A highlight of the National Opera Studio’s Training Programme, the annual contemporary showcase demonstrates the Young Artists’ performance abilities while championing new opera writing in the UK.  This year unexpected camels, greedy sisters, murderous storm clouds and psychological awakening feature in scenes from new operas all directed by David Pountney, who also provides libretti for two of them. 

My Beautiful Camel by Joanna Marsh, (libretto David Pountney), is set in the Burj Khalifa, Dubai’s iconic skyscraper.  Ivan is struggling to keep his company afloat and his last hope is a contract to run Dubai Fashion Week, but following a heap of mistakes and a series of poor decisions, pandemonium ensues.

The Storm Cloud (Tucha), composed in 2012 by Elena Langer, features text from an old Russian lament.  A woman is exasperated by her idle husband and pleads for a storm cloud to kill him.  Alas, the storm cloud shows up, but the outcome was not as she had hoped.

Also by Elena Langer is Four Sisters (libretto, John Lloyd Davies) in which three daughters of a fabulously wealthy and recently deceased industrialist wait in his New York apartment for the family lawyer to read his will.  But where is the will?  And will it make their dreams come true?

Sabina Spielrein by Errollyn Wallen, (libretto, David Pountney), recounts the plight of a pioneering psychoanalyst, her revolutionary thinking and her relationship with Carl Jung and Siegmund Freud.

DUBAI – ROSTOV – NEW YORK, scenes from new operas by Joanna Marsh (My Beautiful Camel), Elena Langer (The Storm Cloud and Four Sisters) and Errollyn Wallen (Sabina Spielrein) opens at Wilton’s Music Hall, London on May 4 where it has two further performances.

National Opera Studio @ Scottish OperaMar 2017
This year's students in their first residency of the year

The National Opera Studio provides a masters course preparing singers for life on the international operatic stage.  The intensity of the training programme is designed to create a working environment that reflects the professional opera world.  One element is residencies with the national opera companies and this year’s students have just completed their residency at Scottish Opera, the culmination of which is performances in Glasgow and London in conjunction with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera.

Directed by Max Hoehn, the operatic excerpts will feature conflicts of high emotional intensity, bound up in complex, high-stakes relationships.  They range from the innocence of Bellini’s ghostly Alpine love story La Sonnambula to political intrigue in Anna Bolena and a wife’s regrets and inner conflict in Massenet’s Werther.  Rossini, Donnizetti and Mozart also feature.

National Opera Studio @ Scottish Opera, The National Opera Studio student performances in conjunction with Scottish Opera take place at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow on 3 March and at Hoxton Hall, London on 6 March.

Danger: Works in Progress!Apr 2016
The National Opera Studio presents an adventurous edition of its annual Contemporary Opera Scenes

Each year a National Opera Studio showcase performance focuses on the work of contemporary composers.  This year one of the world’s leading opera directors, Graham Vick, is directing a selection of staged scenes designed to stretch young artists and audiences beyond their comfort zones.  The programme, featuring scenes from works by Michael Tippett, Mark-Anthony Turnage, Thomas Ades and Adam Gorb together with one just written by Ryan Wigglesworth for English National Opera, will invite audiences to reflect on the nature of the creative process, the magic of making, and the rehearsal room as laboratory.

The National Opera Studio’s Works in Progress takes place on April 20 (with free pre-performance talk) and April 21 at the Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London.

Each Unhappy in its Own WayJun 2015
The National Opera Studios' latest showcase features dysfunctional families

All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way wrote Tolstoy in Anna Karenina.  This is the theme for the National Opera Studio summer showcase of opera scenes directed by Keith Warner and conducted by Mark Shanahan.  All taken from contemporary works the scenes are linked to magnify familiar tensions, presenting the grotesque and often humorous friction created by unruly children; liaisons between husbands, wives and mistresses; and the mayhem that unfolds in the pursuit of domestic bliss.  Composers include Stephen Sondheim, John Adams, Jonathan Dove, Harrison Birtwistle, Thomas Adès and David Blake.

Unhappy Families The National Opera Studio’s summer showcase has two performances at the Lilian Baylis Theatre, Sadler’s Wells on June 4 and 5.  There is a free pre-performance talk on June 4.

National Opera Studio Residency at Opera NorthMay 2014

A significant element of the intensive training at the Studio is the provision of opportunities to work closely with leading directors and conductors and in May this year students will become professional members of Opera North for a week.  This residency culminates in a semi-staged concert at the Howard Assembly Room, Leeds, on May 16 (director Giles Havergal, conductor Jac van Steen) with a showcase featuring snippets from some of Benjamin Britten’s finest operas including Albert Herring, The Rape of Lucretia and the Turn of The Screw.

Unsettling ScoresMay 2013
The National Opera Studio’s latest showcase explores what it means to be human through scenes from 20th century operas

The last one hundred years has seen momentous events and social change from the First World War through to the current influences of immigration, technology and the democratization of culture and society.  Some of the moral issues and the question of individual choice thrown up by these changes are addressed by opera composers such as Tippett, Sondheim, David Blake and Jonathan Dove.

The National Opera Studio, which prepares young singers and pianists for careers in the opera houses of Europe, has constructed a programme of staged extracts around these themes including Blake’s Scoring a Century; Tippett’s King Priam and Jonathan Dove’s Flight.  The scenes will be directed by international director Keith Warner and conductor Nicholas Cleobury.

Unsettling Scores will have three performances opening on May 8 at the National Opera Studio, London as part of the Wandsworth Arts Festival.

In Brief: The National Opera StudioFeb 2013

Part of the training provided by the NOS for its singing students is ensemble work on opera scenes and the presentation of selections of these have become a very popular part of the Studio’s schedule of regular public performances.  The NOS works closely with each of the six major British opera companies and forthcoming residencies with two of them, Scottish Opera and Welsh National Opera, will support performances this winter.  A selection of scenes including extracts from operas by Puccini, Rossini and Tchaikovsky can be seen at the National Opera Studio, Wandsworth, London on two evenings in February.  February 25 (already sold out) and 26.

In Brief: The National Opera StudioDec 2011

This year the Studio’s contemporary opera showcase features two 20th century operas: The Knot Garden by Tippett; and Elegy for Young Lovers by Henze, and two from this century, The Tempest by Thomas Adès; and Turnage’s controversial Anna Nicole, premiered earlier this year at the Royal Opera House.  The scenes (a couple each from most of the works) will be staged and directed by Jo Davies and conducted by Nicholas Cleobury.  The singers, this year’s intake of trainees to the intensive, one-year master course, are Susanna Hurrell, Gabriela Iştoc, and Rhian Lois, sopranos; Cátia Moresco and Josephine Thorpe, mezzos; David Butt Philip, Carlos Fidalgo, Anthony Gregory and Alexander Sprague, tenors; and Alexander Baker, Charles Rice and Aidan Smith, baritones.  The Studio also trains repetiteurs and those providing the accompaniement for the event are Jean-Yves Cornet, Philip Voldman and Paul Wingfield. 

The showcase has two performances at the organisation’s premises in Wandsworth, London, on December 14 and 15

In Brief: The National Opera StudioApr 2011

The Studio regularly stages professionally directed operatic excerpts showcasing the talents of its students.  The next set features Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream, Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore and Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro all directed by Giles Havergal.  The performance is already sold out but tickets are available for the dress rehearsal the previous evening which also includes wine, food and the chance to meet the trainees, director and staff.  The National Opera Studio, Wandsworth, London, April 7 (dress rehearsal) and April 8.  Both events start at 7.30pm.


In Brief: The National Opera Studio in ScotlandFeb 2011

companies the Studio’s next performance of staged excerpts takes place in Scotland on February 25.  Olivia Fuchs directs scenes from Le nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni, La Traviata, Don Carlos, The Pearl Fishers, L’elisir d’amore, Cendrillon and Humperdinck's Hänsel & Gretel.  Among the twelve singers will be Scottish bass Ross McInroy.  Wyn Davies will conduct the orchestra of Scottish Opera at The Theatre Royal, Glasgow.

In Brief: The National Opera Studio goes to WalesJan 2011

The National Opera Studio visits Wales on January 28 providing its trainees with the opportunity to perform with the orchestra of the Welsh National Opera conducted by Jeremy Silver.  Opera excerpts will include: La bohème, Carmen, Candide, I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Cosi fan tutte, Don Giovanni, Le nozze di Figaro, Maria Stuarda, La cenerentola, Carmen, and L'elisir d'amore.  Amongst the twelve singers performing are two recent graduates from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, tenor John Pierce and mezzo-soprano Justina Gringyte.  Hoddinott Hall, Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff, 7pm.

AliveNov 2010
The National Opera Studio’s latest showcase features contemporary opera

It is a something of a truism that dead composers dominate the classical music scene, particularly in the field of opera where new work is not only comparatively rare, but often gets few revivals.  Although all of the operas chosen for this showcase have been recorded, it is good to have the opportunity to see them performed.  The National Opera Studio gives us a generous two scenes each from James Macmillan's The Sacrifice (2007), based on a story in the Mabinogion and set in a war zone during a civil war; Thomas Adès' The Tempest (2004), a reworking of Shakespeare; Mark-Anthony Turnage's Greek (1988), a re-telling of the Oedipus story based on Steven Berkoff’s controversial play with the setting changed to 1980s East End London; and one scene each from Harrison Birtwistle's Gawain (1991), and Jonathan Dove's The Adventures of Pinocchio (2007), both based on traditional stories.

The National Opera Studio runs intensive one year master courses for young singers who are selected in conjunction with the six largest British opera companies as those that have real prospects of becoming principal artists.  The singers appearing in this showcase are: Lucinda-Mirikata Deacon, Susana Gaspar, Aoife O'Sullivan, (soprano); Máire Flavin, Justina Gringytė, Hanna Hipp (mezzo); tenors Tyler Clarke and Nathan Vale, baritone Oliver Dunn and basses Jimmy Holliday and Ross McInroy.

The National Opera Studio showcase Alive directed by Daniel Slater and conducted by Nicholas Cleobury has two performances on Tuesday, 30 November in the Studio’s premises in Wandsworth, London.

In Brief: The National Opera StudioMay 2010

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