Wednesday 26 July 2023

Glenarm Festival of Voice & Tosca in Belfast: a busy August & September at Northern Ireland Opera

Clockwise from top left: Anna Gregg, Petra Wells, Anna-Helena Maclachan, Cathal McCabe, Peter Rankin Piano Intern Doireann O’Carroll. Ryan Garnham and Cathal McCabe
This year's finalists - Clockwise from top left: Anna Gregg, Petra Wells,
Anna-Helena Maclachan, Cathal McCabe, Peter Rankin Piano Intern Doireann O’Carroll,
Ryan Garnham and Cathal McCabe
Northern Ireland Opera's Glenarm Festival of Voice takes place from 25 to 27 August 2023. The centrepiece of the festival is the annual voice competition, featuring young singers from across the island of Ireland. The five finalists selected for this year are Anna Gregg (soprano), Petra Wells (soprano) Anna-Helena Machlachlan (mezzo-soprano), Cathal McCabe (tenor), Ryan Garnham (baritone) and the Peter Rankin Piano Intern for 2023 is Doireann O’Carroll.

After three days of intensive coaching, the finalist take place in the competition in front of a live audience and jury panel, with the jury selecting the winners of the the Deborah Voigt Opera Prize and the Song Prize and the audience voting for the winner of the Audience Prize. The event takes place at the church of the Immaculate Conception, Glenarm with the finale on 27 August 2023.

Also in the festival are three recitals with NI Opera’s festival partners, BBC Radio 3, which will be recorded live and open to audiences for the first time since 2019. This year’s recitalists are tenor Nicky Spence (8pm, 25 August), mezzo soprano Marta Fontanals-Simmons (8pm, 26 August) and baritone James Atkinson (3pm, 27 August) and concerts will take place in St Patrick’s Church, Glenarm.  The 2022 winner of the Festival’s Song Prize, soprano Hannah O’Brien with pianist Tristan Russcher will be returning to the historic Londonderry Arms in Carnlough where she will perform an afternoon recital on 26 August from 3-4pm.

In September, NI Opera will be returning to the Grand Opera House, Belfast for a new production of Puccini's Tosca, directed by NI Opera's artistic director Cameron Mackenzie and conducted by Eduardo Strasser, with the Ulster Orchestra. Russian soprano Svetlana Kasyan is Tosca, with Irish baritone Brendan Collins as Scarpia and Siberian tenor (and 2019 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World song finalist) Roman Arndt as Cavaradossi, plus Irish tenor Aaron O'Hare and Scottish baritone Niall Anderson

Full details from the NI Opera website.

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