Ian Page today announces Swiss-Belgian soprano Chiara Skerath, British tenor Gwilym Bowen and Swedish mezzo-soprano Ida Ränzlöv as new Associate Artists of Classical Opera and The Mozartists. All three artists will join the company for the fifth year of its ground-breaking MOZART 250 project as it explores the music being written by Mozart and his contemporaries in 1769.
Chiara Skerath, who made her UK début with Ian Page and The Mozartists at Wigmore Hall in January 2018, is joining them again for their annual MOZART 250 retrospective ‘1769: A Year in Music’, this year at the Queen Elizabeth Hall [29 January 2019]. The programme surveys the musical scene of 1769 with works by Mozart, including a recently rediscovered aria, in addition to music by his contemporaries Arne, Paisiello, Haydn, C. P. E. Bach, Gluck and Mozart’s father Leopold.
The three new Associate Artists will all feature in the UK première of Hasse’s Piramo e Tisbe at Cadogan Hall where Gwilym and Ida will make their company débuts [28 March 2019]. Gwilym Bowen later joins Ian Page and the ensemble for two performances of Gluck’s Bauci e Filemone and Orfeo (the UK première of Gluck’s 1769 revision for a soprano Orfeo) at the Queen Elizabeth Hall [29 & 31 May 2019].
The Associate Artists scheme was launched in 2006 by Classical Opera’s founder and Artistic Director Ian Page to consolidate the company’s work in assisting the development of young singers in the early stages of their career. Page has a strong track record in this area, initially through his work at the Royal College of Music and as assistant conductor at Glyndebourne, and more recently as a coach on the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. The development of young talent has been a central pillar of his work with Classical Opera over the past twenty years.
Since 2006 there have been more than thirty Classical Opera Associate Artists, including Sophie Bevan, who recently released the album ‘Perfido!’ with The Mozartists, and Allan Clayton, whose recording ‘Where’er You Walk’ with the company was recently shortlisted in the ‘Recording (Solo Recital)’ category in the 2017 International Opera Awards. Other Associate Artists include Louise Alder, Anna Devin, Stuart Jackson, Pumeza Matshikiza and Natalya Romaniw.
Ian Page says: “I am delighted to welcome these three wonderful singers as Associate Artists. Although of course vocally very different, they are united as artists of exceptional quality, individuality, focus and artistic imagination, and I am greatly looking forward to working with them. Mozart’s compositional output in 1769 was unusually sparse, but this offers us the chance to dig a little deeper in our exploration of the music being written 250 years ago. The fifth year of our ongoing MOZART 250 project will include two operas that will be receiving their UK premières, and I’m excited by the prospect of unearthing this fascinating repertoire with our new Associate Artists.”
Chiara Skerath says “Ian is such a wonderful musician and I am very thankful to have done all these marvellous projects with him and The Mozartists. With him I am discovering so much wonderful new music, and working with the ensemble earlier this year brought me pure joy, beauty and musical happiness.”