18 Mar 2017

Bampton Classical Opera Young Singers’ Competition 2017

Applications are now open for the Bampton Classical Opera Young Singers’ Competition 2017. This biennial competition was first launched in 2013 to celebrate the company’s 20th birthday, and is aimed at identifying the finest emerging young opera singers currently working in the UK.

The previous winners were mezzo-soprano Anna Starushkevych (2013) and soprano Galina Averina (2015). Bampton Classical Opera has a reputation for its commitment to young talent and a number of singers who have appeared on the Bampton stage have gone on to work with national companies such as The Royal Opera, English National Opera and Opera North.

The first round of the Bampton Classical Opera Young Singers’ Competition 2017 (closed sessions) will take place on 28 and 29 October in London. The public final will take place in the Holywell Music Room, Oxford, on Sunday 19 November at 6pm. Judges for the competition will be two renowned British singers: tenor Bonaventura Bottone and mezzo-soprano Jean Rigby.

Competitors can apply by downloading an application form and information document from www.bamptonopera.org or on request by emailing ysc@bamptonopera.org

Applications opened on 1 March 2017 and the entry deadline is 11 August 2017.

First prize £1,500 - Second prize £500. For the first time there will also be a £500 Accompanists’ Prize.

The winner of the first Young Singers’ Competition in 2013 was Ukrainian mezzo-soprano Anna Starushkevych and British soprano Rosalind Coad was the runner-up.

Since then Anna Starushkevych performed the role of Erato in Gluck’s Il Parnaso confuso and the title role in Bertoni’s Orfeo (UK première) for Bampton Classical Opera, both during summer 2014. In summer 2015 she sang the role of Ofelia in Salieri’s La grotta di Trofonio , also for the company. She is one of the soloists on a new Resonus Classics CD of song cycles by Pavel Haas, including the world première recording of Fata Morgana. Later this year Anna will sing the role of Matilda in Handel’s Ottone at both the Beaune Festival and Theater an der Wien.

Rosalind Coad was a Scottish Opera Emerging Artist from 2014-15 and sang a number of roles for the company. Currently she is covering the role of Mélisande in Pelléas et Mélisande for Scottish Opera. Other performances have included Gianetta (L’Elisir d’Amore) and Clotilde (Norma) for Opera Holland Park. She sang the role of Daughter in the Bampton Classical Opera concert performance of Maurice Greene’s Jephtha in 2014.

In the Young Singers’ Competition 2015 Russian soprano Galina Averina won first prize and Welsh soprano Céline Forrest was the runner-up.

Since the competition Galina Averina sang the role of Atalanta ( Serse) for English Touring Opera in 2016. She is currently singing Pamina for Mid-Wales Opera, and will be performing at the London Handel Festival. She will be taking part in the young artists programme at this year’s Aix-en-Provence Festival and will return to English Touring Opera for next season’s autumn and spring tours.

Céline Forrest studied at the National Opera Studio in 2015/2016. Her opera training took her to Opera North and Welsh National Opera, where she worked with Graham Vick and Elaine Kidd. Recently she covered the role of Jessica in Welsh National Opera’s The Merchant of Venice by Tchaikowsky. She is currently working on the role of Mina in Verdi’s Aroldo for UCOpera.

This competition is open UK residents aged between 21 and 32 on 19 November, 2017.