Only 2 out of 6 new Covent Garden singers are BritishOpera
The Royal Opera House has announced participants in next year’s Jette Parker Artists Programme, its springboard to an operatic career.
As ever, only a small proportion of the candidates below are British.
By contrast, at the Met the majority of singers selected for the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program are North American.
Some anomaly, surely?
Here are the new Jette hopefuls:
Isabela Díaz – Soprano
Chilean soprano Isabela Díaz is currently completing her studies at the University of Chile. Roles at Teatro Colón include Serpetta and Sandrina (La finta giardiniera), Ingrata (Altri Canti d’amor), Norina (Don Pasquale) and Susanna and Zerlina in the Mozart Lyric Gala and, for the Juventus Lyrica Company Pamina (The Magic Flute) and Valencienne (Die Lustige Witwe).
Grisha Martirosyan – Baritone
Armenian baritone Grisha Martirosyan took first prize, the audience prize and the Dame Joan Sutherland Prize at the Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition 2022 and was awarded first prize at the Gohar Gasparian Armenian National Singing Competition 2019.
Jamie Woollard – Bass
British Bass Jamie Woollard is currently studying at the Royal College of Music Opera Studio. At RCM Jamie has performed roles including Sarastro (The Magic Flute), Jupiter in Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld, and the Immigration Officer in Dove’s Flight, and he will perform Il Re in Respighi’s La bella dormente nel bosco in March 2023. In Summer 2023, Jamie will join Glyndebourne Festival to cover Snug in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and to play Thierry in Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites. In concert Jamie has recently performed Mozart’s Requiem (St Martin in the Fields), Bach’s Cantata 215 (Wigmore Hall), and Verdi’s Requiem (Leith Hill Music Festival), as well as the title role in Handel’s Saul (Exeter Bach Choir), and in the premiere of Teresa Barlow’s Requiem (Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra).
Veena Akama-Makia – Mezzo Soprano (pictured)
Cameroonian/Ugandan American mezzo-soprano Veena Akama-Makia is currently a Young Artist at the Chicago Opera Theatre and a professional diploma candidate at the Chicago College of the Performing Arts at Roosevelt University.
Valentina Puscas – Soprano
Transylvanian soprano Valentina Puscas is currently employed at the National Theatre of Miskolc, Hungary, and has worked as a soloist with Bucharest National Opera, Transylvania Philharmonic, Oradea State Philharmonic, ‘Ion D. Sirbu’ Theatre Petrosani, Deva’s Theatre of Arts and ‘Queen Mary’ State Theatre Oradea. She has a master’s degree from the National University of Music Bucharest.
Ryan Vaughan Davies – Tenor
Welsh tenor Ryan Vaughan Davies is currently a student of the Royal Academy of Music’s Opera School where he is a Bicentenary Scholar, and generously supported by The Norman Ayrton award, The John Clemence Trust, The Arts Society Moor Park, The Ryan Davies Memorial fund and The Bryn Terfel Foundation. He previously received his Master’s of Music degree from the Royal College of Music and Bachelor of Music from the Royal Northern College of Music. He will join the Jette Parker Artists Programme in the 2023/24 Season.