Book tickets for Opera Unwrapped for Christmas, our Christmas fundraising concert taking place on Sunday 2nd December, by calling Norwich Theatre Royal Box Office: 01603 630000 or online by clicking HERE.
Into Opera return to the Assembly House Norwich with some of the UK’s finest singers for an evening of music, conversation, canapés and bubbly – the perfect way to enjoy an evening in the run up to Christmas with friends and loved ones.
This intimate concert offers a unique opportunity to enjoy music performed by a number of singers including the internationally acclaimed Mezzo-Soprano, Yvonne Howard and exceptional British Soprano, Katie Bird. It will be an opportunity to find out what got these successful singers into opera and to hear some of their favourite repertoire from composers including Donizetti, Puccini and Bernstein.
This concert is taking place to raise money to support Into Opera’s future education projects in Norfolk and will also feature a special performance from the Into Opera Youth Company.
KATIE BIRD – SOPRANO
British Soprano Katie Bird, a graduate of the prestigious National Opera Studio, London, began her studies at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, under the tutelage of Patricia MacMahon. She then went on to complete a year at the Royal Academy of Music London. During this time she was awarded the Norma Grieg Prize for French Song and was a Finalist in the Frank Spedding Lieder Competition. In 2013 her year of study at the National Opera Studio was generously supported by English National opera. She now studies with the one of the world’s leading Classical Voice teachers, Paul Farrington.
Since completing her year at the National Opera Studio, Katie has gone on to make her debuts with English National Opera, Scottish Opera, Northern Ireland Opera and Opera North. For English National Opera and Northern Ireland Opera, singing Masha and Chloe in David Alden’s new production of The Queen of Spades and The Governess in a revival of Oliver Mears production of The Turn of the Screw respectively. More recently Katie has made her debut for Opera North, singing; Hanna Glavari in The Merry Widow, Kate Pinkerton and covering Cio Cio San in Madama Butterfly, Nedda I Pagliacci, Suor Osmina and covering the title role in Suor Angelica. Her other professional operatic engagements include; Adina The Elixir of Love, Mimi La Boheme (Nevill Holt Opera); Cio Cio San cover Madam Butterfly, Liza cover The Queen of Spade, Mimi La Boheme, Tatyana cover Eugene Onegin, Antigone cover in the world premiere of Thebans (English National Opera); 1st Witch Macbeth reduction (Scottish Opera); Mimi La Boheme (Longborough Opera Festival); Governess Turn of the Screw and Nedda I Pagliacci (Opera Up Close); Clarice Il Mondo della Luna (Opera East Productions); Dido Dido and Aeneas; Countess Almaviva Le nozze di Figaro (Armonico Consort). Tannhäuser, Parsifal, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Bayreuth Festival Chorus, Germany).
Hailed by the press as ‘one of the finest singing actresses this country has produced’, Stafford born Yvonne Howard’s career has taken her all over the world in repertoire as diverse as Wagner’s Ring Cycle, Handel’s Messiah, The Dream of Gerontius, USA, Handel’s Xerxes (Brazil) and Theodora in Strasbourg, and filming the internationally award winning film of John Adams’ The Death of Klinghoffer for which she was nominated for a best actress award.
Yvonne studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, with Joseph Ward and David Johnston, and since making her operatic debut at Glyndebourne as a chorister an then soloist, has enjoyed a particularly varied career, as her wide vocal range enables her to take on roles from both Mezzo Soprano and Soprano repertoire (Zwischenfach roles) These include the title roles in Beethoven’s Fidelio (Royal Opera, Covent Garden and Opera Holland Park) and Bellini’s Norma ( ETO and Opera Holland Park), Sara, Roberto Devereux (Opera Holland Park under Richard Bonynge.) Ceasonia in Caligula, in London, Buenos Aires and Hamburg, and Katisha in the Mikado – English National Opera, Mrs Grose in Turn of the Screw and Fricka in Das Rheingold, Opera North and Sieglinde in Die Walküre with the Halle, (released on CD) Aunt Nettie in Carousel at the Barbican, Mother in Hansel and Gretel – Garsington Opera, Auntie – Peter Grimes and Hippolyta – A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Opera North.
Other work includes Holst’s Savitri for Coros, Oxford, and with the CBSO in Symphony Hall, Birmingham, The Dream of Gerontius in Lisbon, Seven Seeds with the Aurore Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall, The Monster in the Maze, LSO Barbican with Sir Simon Rattle, ENO Katisha, in the Mikado and in 2016 for Opera North, in their first complete Ring Cycle in which she will sing both Fricka’s and 2nd Norn. Yvonne recently completed 2 seasons at ENO, where she she sang Berta in The Barber of Seville and the Queen of the Fairies in Iolanthe. In the summer of 2018, Yvonne sang her first Mistress Quickly in Falstaff for Garsington Opera, and will soon return to both ENO and Opera Holland Park.
Yvonne enjoys working with young singers in Masterclass and workshop settings and since 2015, has been a visiting Professor of Singing at the Royal Academy of Music.
JUNG SOO YUN – TENOR