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Where Are They Now?
Past Winners Include
GISELLE ALLEN – Soprano – Clonter 1995
Since winning the Clonter Opera Prize in 1995, Giselle achieved success in several other competitions in the UK and Ireland, notably winning the Lady Nixon Prize, the Countess of Munster Scholarship and the Sybill Tutton Award. Her operatic roles include Parassia Sorochintsky Fair, title role Suor Angelica, title role Troilus and Cressida for the William Walton Foundation, Tatyana Eugene Onegin for the Buxton Festival, Svatava Sarka for Wexford Festival Opera, title role in Mascagni’s Iris and Countess The Marriage of Figaro for Opera Holland Park, Geraldine in Samuel Barber’s A Hand of Bridge in the ‘American Series’ at the Barbican, Wellgunde Das Rheingoldand Gutrune Götterdämmerung for the Covent Garden Festival. Concert performances include Musetta La bohème for ENO and at La Monnaie in Brussels with Antonio Pappano, her debut as Ellen Orford Peter Grimes at the Komische Oper in Berlin, and Gerhilde Die Walküre at English National Opera. A regular visitor to Opera North, Giselle appearances include Tatyana Eugene Onegin, The Fox Cunning Little Vixen, Ellen Orford Peter Grimes, Musetta La bohème, Marenka The Bartered Bride, Donna Elvira Don Giovanni and title roles Rusalka, Jenůfa and Kat’á Kabanová. Recent appearances include title role Jenůfa for Glyndebourne on Tour, title role Rusalka, Miss Jessel The Turn of the screw, Freia Das Rheingold for Opera North, Miss Jessel for the Glyndebourne Festival and for Northern Ireland Opera, Martha The Passenger for English National Opera and Mimi La Bohème for Welsh National Opera. As a concert artist Giselle Allen has performed in many of the major concert halls in the UK and Ireland. She has worked with conductors such as Sir Simon Rattle, Gennadi Rozhdestvensky, Sir David Willcocks and Marin Alsop, and has recorded with the Ulster rchestra under Vernon Handley and Sir Mark Elder. Recent appearances include Lisa Queen of Spades for Grange Park Opera and English National Opera. This season Giselle returns to Zürich to revive Miss Jessel, a role she will also sing with NI Opera, a performance of Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with the RTÉ in Dublin and Freia Das Rheingold, Gerhilde Die Walküre and Gutrune Götterdämmerung in Opera North’s Ring Cycle.
ALFIE BOE OBE – Tenor – Clonter 1998
Since winning the Clonter Opera Prize in 1998, Alfie has gone on to become an international star in both opera and musical theatre. He is best know for his performances as Jean Valjean in Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre in London, the Les Misérables 25th Anniversary Concert in October 2010, and in the Broadway revival. He played the lead role in Finding Neverland on Broadway in 2016. As well Alfiie shared a Tony Award with the other member of the ensemble cast of Baz Luhrmann’s 2002 revival of La bohèmein 2003. He has sold more than one million albums in the United Kingdom, and performed at The Queen’s Birthday Party in 2018.
JONATHAN LEMALU – Bass Baritone – Clonter 2000 & 2001
Since winning the Clonter Opera Prize in 2000, Jonathan went onto be awarded the London’s Royal College of Music’s top honours (Tagore Gold Medal and Queen Elizabeth Rosebowl).His competition successes include Royal Overseas League Gold Medal, Kathleen Ferrier Award and Llangollen Young Singer of the World. Jonathan was a BBC3 Radio New Generation Artist and Wigmore Hall-nominated Rising Stars recitalist. His debut recording (EMI Classics) with pianist Roger Vignoles received Gramophone Magazine’s Debut Disc of the Year (2002), ECHO Klassik award and Royal Philharmonic Society’s Young Artist of the year. Other solo recordings with EMI Classics include Jonathan Lemalu: Love Blows as the Wind Blows with Malcolm Martineau and the Belcea Quartet (ECHO Klassik Award). As a recitalist Jonathan’s performances include singing at Vienna’s Musikverein and Konzerthaus, Berlin’s Philharmonie, New York’s Carnegie Hall, Salzburg’s Mozarteum, London’s Wigmore Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall and Edinburgh Festivals with Joseph Middleton, Roger Vignoles, Graham Johnson, Malcolm Martineau and Julius Drake. Jonathan’s staged performances include appearances at the Royal Opera House, Metropolitan Opera, Chicago Lyric, Bayerische Staatsoper, Theater an der Wien, Salzburg Festival, Glyndebourne Festival, English National Opera, in roles including Dulcamara L’Elisir d’Amore, Nick Shadow The Rake’s Progress, Leporello Don Giovanni, Bottom A Midsummer Nights Dream, Pogner Meistersinger Von Nürnberg, Basilio Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Colline La bohème, Papageno Die Zauberflöte, and the title roles in Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro, Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle, Verdi’s Falstaff, Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess, with conductors Mehta, Pappano, Rattle, Norrington, Jurowski, Jacobs, Christie, Dutoit, Gergiev, Summers, MacKerras, Davis, Bolton, Elder, Young, Harnoncourt, Gardner, Harding. Jonathan teaches, gives masterclasses, repertoire coaching and is an external examiner/adjudicator in New Zealand, Australia, and the UK’s Royal College of Music, Welsh Academy of Music, and Guildhall School of Music & Drama where he is a Professor of Voice.
KATE ROYAL – Soprano – Clonter 2003
Since winning the Clonter Opera Prize in 2003, Kate went on to win the 2004 Kathleen Ferrier Award, the 2004 John Christie Award, and the 2007 Royal Philharmonic Society Young Artist Award. Concert performances have included the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment with Sir Simon Rattle (BBC Proms and Festspielhaus Baden-Baden), the Bach Akademie Stuttgart with Helmuth Rilling, at the Edinburgh Festival with Sir Charles Mackerras, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic with Vassily Petrenko, the Orchestra of La Scala Milan with Myung-Whun Chung, the Los Angeles Philharmonic/Pablo Heras-Casado, the New York Philharmonic Orchestra with Alan Gilbert, the BBC Symphony with Jiri Belohlavek, the London Philharmonic/Vladimir Jurowski and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, the Rotterdam Philharmonic/Nézet-Séguin, the BBC Proms, and both the Berlin Philharmonic and the Orchestra of Bavarian Radio under Rattle. She has appeared in recital throughout Europe and North America. Her opera performances include Marschallin Der Rosenkavalier, Pamina Die Zauberflöte, Micaela Carmen, Female Chorus The Rape of Lucretia and Donna Elvira Don Giovanni for the Glyndebourne Festival; Pamina for the Baden-Baden Festival with the Berlin Philharmonic and Rattle, the Lucerne Festival with Harding, and the Royal Opera; Countess Le nozze di Figaro and Governess The Turn of the Screw for Glyndebourne on Tour; Helena A Midsummer Night’s Dream for both the Teatro Real, Madrid and the Glyndebourne Festival; Poppea for English National Opera; Miranda Ades’ The Tempest for the Royal Opera; and Handel’s L’Allegro Pamina Die Zauberflöte, for the Paris Opera. She made her Metropolitan Opera debut as Euridice, returning for Micaela. Kate’s has recorded Schumann Liederkreis with Graham Johnson for Hyperion and Mahler Symphony No. 4 with the Manchester Camerata. In October 2006 she signed an exclusive contract with EMI Classics for whom her first solo recording was a self-titled musical portrait with the Academy of St Martin-in-the-Fields conducted by Edward Gardner, followed by 20th century arias (“Midsummer Night”) with the Orchestra of English National Opera and Gardner, and a song recital disc with Malcolm Martineau (“A Lesson in Love”) and Mahler 2 with Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic.
NATALYA ROMANIW – Soprano – Clonter 2010 & 2011
Since winning the Clonter Opera Prize in 2010, Natalya went on to win the 2016 Critic’s Choice Award for Music, for her ‘big toned, generous, gut-wrenching performanes’(Sunday Times) and her ‘glowing voice capable of astonishing power’ (FT), she is often hailed by the British press as ‘the outstanding soprano of her generation’ (Telegraph). Upcoming engagements include major role debuts as Cio Cio San in the acclaimed Minghella Madame Butterfly for English National Opera under the baton of Martyn Brabbins, title role in Tosca with Scottish Opera, and her return to Garsington Opera as Rusalka. She made her BBC Proms debut in 2019 with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and made her first solo recital recording in collaboration with pianist Lada Valesova, featuring repertoire by Dvořák, Janáček, Novák and Rachmaninov. Highlights of her 18/19 season included her house debut with English National Opera as Mimi La bohéme. She also recieved critial acclaim in her returns to Garsington Opera as Mařenka, in Smetana’s The Bartered Bride, and to Opera Holland Park as the title role in Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta. On the concert stage, she gave the world premiere of Mark Anthony Turnage’s Testament with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Natalya received unanimous critical acclaim in 2016 for her portrayal of Tatyana in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at Garsington Opera. She has since performed the role with the Welsh National Opera, and in Oliver Mears’s new production for Scottish Opera. Other notable engagements include her European debut as Suzel in L’amico Fritz for Den Jyske Opera, Lisa in Pique Dame with Opera Holland Park and National Theatre Brno, title role in Jenůfa with Grange Park Opera, and Beethoven Symphony No. 9 with the Hallé orchestra under the baton of Sir Mark Elder. At the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Natalya was awarded the prestigious Gold Medal in her final year. Since graduating Natalya has gone on to win many competitions including the Loveday Song Prize and the renowned Kathleen Ferrier Awards in 2012; she was a prize winner in the Houston Grand Opera Eleanor McCollum Competition; the 2017 operatic nominee in The Times breakthrough category of the Southbank Sky Arts Awards, and a finalist for the Song Prize in Cardiff Singer of the World 2009. After graduating, Natalya joined the Houston Grand Opera Studio, where she debuted roles such as Mimi La bohème, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, Micaela Carmen and Krystina The Passenger. After finishing her time with Houston Grand Opera, she returned as a guest for her role debut as Ortlinde Die Walküre.
ALEXANDRA LOWE – Soprano – Clonter 2019
Since winning the Clonter Opera Prize in 2019 and performing the role of Elvira in Clonter’s production of Don Giovanni in the same year, Alexandra has gone on to study at the National Opera Studio where she performed in scenes as The Governess in The Turn of the Screw, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus – amongst others. She was awarded the second prize at the Glyndebourne Opera Cup 2020 and joined the Jette Parker Young Artist Programme at the Royal Opera House in September 2020. She previously graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree and a Masters of Music from the RNCM. Competitions and awards include The Clonter Opera Prize, the Elisabeth Harwood Prize and the Kennedy Award for Singing Strauss. She is a recipient of a Silver Medal from the Worshipful Company of Musicians and of the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Sarah Brightman Scholarship. In 2018 she became a Samling Artist. Operatic roles performed at the GSMD and/or the RNCM include Helena, Lucia I/II, Anna Gomez, Rose Maurrant, Theodora and Métella. Professionally she has played Fiordiligi (Neville Holt Opera) and Barena (Grange Park Opera). Roles at BYO include The Bride/Wife/Mother and Mrs. Coyle.