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Opera stars of the future perform for public

02 Tachwedd 2007

The first graduates from the University’s academy to train opera stars will showcase their vocal and performance skills (2 November) in the first of a series of concerts to be held throughout the month.

Students from the Cardiff International Academy of Voice (CIAV), which provides individual voice coaching to some of the most exciting talent in world opera, will give a series of song recitals and an operatic gala over the course of the month.

Held at the University Concert Hall on Corbett Road, CF10 3EB, the first concert (Friday 2 November) showcases music by British composers both celebrated and neglected, together with Lieder by Schubert and Schumann (including his tender song-cycle encapsulating a woman's love and life, 'Frauenliebe und -leben') and a handful of songs which survived the Frenchman Henri Duparc’s destruction of his own output.

Cardiff based pianist Michael Pollock will play for the first two song recitals, the second of which will be held on November 9. The first song-cycle ever composed - Beethoven’s passionate hymn to the distant beloved, ‘An die ferne Geliebte’ will be performed alongside music by a German composer of a later generation, Richard Strauss; the Russian outpourings of Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov are then contrasted with the warmth and exuberance of songs from Spain and Latin America.

Renowned Welsh Tenor Dennis O’Neill, Director of the Cardiff International Academy of Voice said: "These concerts should be a real treat for anyone interested in opera or singing because some of the students have already begun making quite a name for themselves around the world, and have taken this early career break in order to refine their technique. The concert series is really exciting and provides an ideal opportunity to display this amazing talent."

The academy opened its doors to its first group of exceptional, early-professional stage operatic stars in January. The Song Recital Series allows the students to exhibit their new found skills, and offers the public the chance to hear singers from countries such as Australia, Ireland, Lithuania, Romania and Wales, many of whom have the potential to become opera stars of the future.

Pelham Andrews is one of the Academy students who will be performing in the first concert on November 2, singing pieces by Schubert and 'Three Shakespeare Songs' by Roger Quilter. Pelham, originally from Australia said: "For opera singers, the chance to explore in recital some of the vast repertoire of classical song is a special event, and often adds even more vivid colours to the operatic voice. We have an exciting partnership with pianist Michael Pollock that can really bring the poems, stories and music to life."

Joining Pelham in the first of the Recital Series concerts will be fellow Academy students Norah King, Jurgita Adamonytė and Paul O’Neill. Further concerts will be held on the 9 and 16 of November, and the autumn concert series will culminate with a lively Operatic Gala (30 November) where Academy students will perform a stirring collection of operatic arias, duets and ensembles.

The Song Recital Series concerts start at 7.30pm and tickets can be bought for £9 (concessions £7) on 029 2048 1853. Further details of the concert series can be found at