During the latest series of lockdowns here in the UK, I am pleased to say I have been involved in a number of online opera projects – and you can still watch many of them now!
Throughout November, I was preparing for two big filmed projects. First, DEBUT Horizons Opera Scenes – filmed with socially-distanced staging, in a real theatre! Even without an audience, it was a real privilege to perform with wonderful colleagues in person again. Here’s a clip of me singing Dandini’s aria from Rossini’s La Cenerentola – I am the Prince’s servant currently in disguise as the Prince, and am enjoying myself immensely! Do watch the rest as well – skip back to the beginning of the video to see all the wonderful scenes.
The other project was my very first (Mozart) Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, for Random Opera. We all recorded our parts entirely in isolation, and they were edited together. It was a mammoth task, and a real labour of love for all involved – and it came out well, considering the cast never got to meet in person at all! Here’s the video below. if you don’t have time to watch the full three hour opera(!), here are some shortcuts to my arias:
Se vuol ballare (in which I’m doing a home workout)
Non più andrai (featuring silly props and a horrified Cherubino)
Tutto è disposto … Aprite un po quegli occhi
Just before the December Tier 4 lockdown hit London, I also managed to make new aria recordings, supported generously by Independent Opera. Here’s a taster: Tu sei il cor, Achilla’s aria from Giulio Cesare by Handel.
Other projects include playing L’Horloge Comtoise in VOPERA (Virtual Opera)’s critically acclaimed production of L’Enfant et les Sortilèges by Ravel. This isn’t available on YouTube any longer, but can be viewed by signing up to Marquee Arts here. I also live-streamed a recital from my living room over Zoom, which was a real treat!
We’ve all had to innovate in order to survive lockdown as artists, and despite the immense setbacks, some really good things have been produced, and we’ve discovered new ways of performing and connecting with audiences. While we all long for a return to live performances in theatres, these techniques will remain relevant. You’ll be seeing a lot more of this kind of content in the next year, I’m sure!