“Welcome to the Semi-Finals Concert of the 2017 IFAC Handa Australian Singing Competition. This afternoon you will hear eleven incredible singers who come to us from around the nation and across the world. This is our 36th Semi-Finals and we are honoured to have with us an esteemed panel of adjudicators including our National Adjudicator, Catrin Johnsson.
The ASC is committed to offering the finest educational and artistic experiences for our participants. This week, each Semi Finalist enjoyed a workshop called “The Singing Actor” presented by our National Adjudicator. The five Finalists selected tonight will also gain the privilege of working directly with Ms Johnsson tomorrow in a MasterClass – don’t miss it! We invite you to visit our YouTube Channel where you can view performances going back three decades. Our Channel has proven wonderfully popular and has had to date over 700,000 views.
We thank our friends, sponsors and supporters for making this afternoon possible. We wish each of the Semi-Finalists a successful performance and look forward to welcoming you to the Finals on Saturday 15 July at the Concourse Concert Hall, Chatswood.”
Roland Gridiger, CEO Music & Opera Singers Trust Ltd.
The Australian Singing Competition is committed to finding and fostering the next generation of classical singers and the Semi-Finals are instrumental in achieving this aim. This stage of the Competition is not simply about pitting one singer against another, but also about helping the singers develop as artists. Indeed, education is a cornerstone of the Australian Singing Competition.
As Semi-Finalists, the singers are required to prepare no less than four items of music that must include a work by a Classical or Baroque composer (such as Monteverdi, Handel, Bach or Mozart) and a song for voice and piano (such as a lieder, art song, or chanson). The Adjudicators hear any or all of these pieces in the Private Adjudication session held the day before the Concert.
After the Private Adjudication, the eleven singers compete one last time onstage at the Semi-Finals Concert. Each singer performs two pieces, one of which must be an art song. This requirement was intended to encourage young classical singers who wanted careers outside of opera and remains a distinctive element of the Competition.
From the eleven Semi-Finalists, only five will be selected as Finalists. These five will appear at the Finals Concert on Saturday 15th July at 7pm in the Concert Hall of the Concourse Theatre, Chatswood. Now in its 36th year, the ASC has showcased nearly 3,000 singers who have competed for more than $3 million in prizes. Former winners of the ‘Marianne Mathy Scholarship’ (the major prize in the Australian Singing Competition) such as Rachelle Durkin, Amelia Farrugia, Stuart Skelton and Paul Whelan, have all gone on to achieve national and international acclaim.
Catrin Johnsson was born in Sweden and trained at the Sköndal Institute (Organist Course) and Royal University College of Music in Stockholm (Solo Vocal Course) where she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Music. She completed her formal training at the Royal Academy of Music in London (Performance and Opera Course) where she graduated with a Dip.RAM and LRAM. She has furthered her vocal studies with Jacqueline Bremar and David Harper. Awards include the prestigious Christina Nilsson Award from the Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm, Elena Gerhardt Lieder Prize, Flora Nielsen Prize, Michael Head Prize, Katie Thomas Prize, and the Minnie Hauk Prize.
Operatic roles include the title role in The Duchess of Malfi for English National Opera, Medoro in Handel’s Orlando for the Åmot Opera Festival in Norway, Cherubino Le nozze di Figaro, La Ciesca Gianni Schicchi and Dimitri Fedora for Opera Holland Park, Dorabella Così fan tutte, Dido Dido and Aeneas, Carmen, Meg Page Falstaff, Hansel Hansel and Gretel, Adelberto Ottone and Idelberto Lotario (London Handel Festival), Nicklausse Les Contes d'Hoffmann, Prince The Happy Prince, Zerlina Don Giovanni, Second Lady and Third Lady The Magic Flute. Covered roles include Fyodor Boris Godunov and Dorabella Così fan tutte for English National Opera, Hermia A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Stéphano Roméo et Juliette for Opera North.
2017 SEMI-FINALS CONCERT ADJUDICATORS
A well-known and respected presenter for Sydney’s classical music station Fine Music 102.5fm Camille has always taken an active part in supporting young musicians and singers.
As a performer, Camille’s experience encompasses the Operatic Stage and International concert platform, Plays, Cabaret and Music Theatre.
On several occasions she has been a Guest Artist with Opera Australia and has also performed with a number of touring companies, both in Australia and New Zealand. Internationally her voice has taken her to perform in Switzerland, Italy, the UK and China.
This year she is delighted to be joining the IFAC Handa Australian Singing Competition as the presenter for the Semi-finals and the Finalist Masterclass.
2017 Semi-FInals Concert Programme
(by last name in alphabetical order)
DAMIAN ARNOLD 25 tenor NSW
O del mio amato ben / Donaudy
La fleur que tu m’avais jetée
LIVIA BRASH 25 soprano NSW
Cäcilie OP. 27 NO. 2 / Strauss
Il est doux, il est bon
DANIEL CARISON 24 baritone VIC
Donne mie, la fate a tanti
Il mulino, il fonte, il bosco…Vi ravviso, o luoghi ameni
JAE KWON KIM 22 baritone NSW
Honor and Arms
LAUREN LODGE-CAMPBELL 24 soprano UK
KATHERINE MCINDOE 23 soprano NZ
The Jewel Song
O rendetemi la speme…. Qui la voce I
FILIPE MANU 24 tenor NZ
Nacht und Träume
E serbato a questo acciaro; L’amo tanto I
SHIKARA RINGDAHL 25 mezzo soprano QLD
Va! Laisse couler mes larmes
NATASHA WILSON 23 soprano NZ
Natasha made her professional debut with New Zealand Opera in 2017, as a member of the company for their touring production of The Mikado.
Je veux vivre
Sunrise Mov 1, Mov 2 Op. 76, No.4 / Haydn
Winners of the following –
Announcement of –
Approximately 3 hours, with a 20-minute interval.
Engineer: Greg Ghavalas
Photography and videography by MOST®
The Music & Opera Singers Trust Ltd would like to acknowledge the support of our Sponsors for the Semi-Finals:
One of Australia's leading young sopranos, Nicole shares her experience in the 2008 Australian Singing Competition.
In September 2012, Nicole was the winner of the 2012 Opera Awards and is a member of Opera Australia's Young Artists Program.