ENO Harewood Artists – Memorable Moments (Part II)

16th November 2018 in News

At ENO we are committed to nurturing talent. The ENO Harewood Artists programme enables exceptionally talented singers to perform with ENO while receiving specialist coaching, support and guidance for 2-3 years and is funded entirely through donations. Support opera’s rising stars.

In the second in this series, scroll down as a selection of ENO Harewood Artists past and present recall their most memorable moments on the programme.

Elgan Llyr Thomas – Current ENO Harewood Artist

Elgan Llyr Thomas - tenor of English National Opera

“I have only recently begun my time as a Harewood Artist but there have already been many memorable moments. The moment that stands out so far was singing the tenor solo in the ‘Brindisi’ from La traviata with the ENO Chorus at West End Live. I was really nervous as there was no time for a rehearsal, but I had an absolute blast singing this classic for an audience of thousands in Trafalgar Square. I reckon it’s a close as I’ll come to feeling like Beyoncé.”

Matthew Durkan – Current ENO Harewood Artist

matthew-durkan (c) Pablo Strong

“There are so many great moments and memories I can recall of my time at ENO so far, but I think my favourite would have to be singing Marullo in Jonathan Miller’s classic production of Rigoletto. For one performance, my partner and cover singer Gabriella Cassidy, performed the role of Gilda whilst pregnant with our first child. It will be a memory to cherish forever and was so surreal. I loved every moment and I was lucky enough to be able to watch her sing the third act from a box in the Coliseum. I was so proud and it’s amazing to think that the whole family were on stage together (except for our dog Barney!).”

Katie Stevenson – Current ENO Harewood Artist

Katie Stevenson - Mezzo-soprano of English National Opera

“Even as a new singer to the Harewood Artists programme I am already reaping the benefits from all it has to offer. One of my most memorable moments came whilst watching the opening performance of The Barber of Seville. We had just begun rehearsals for Nico Muhly’s Marnie and whilst sitting in the audience during the overture it suddenly dawned on me that in 6 weeks’ time I would be performing on stage at the Coliseum. For years I have watched and been amazed by ENO shows, so to have the opportunity to perform there myself is an incredible privilege.”

Samantha Price – Current ENO Harewood Artist

Samantha Price, Performer at the English National Opera

“I have such fond memories from the whole duration of putting together The Winter’s Tale by Ryan Wigglesworth, and directed by Rory Kinnear. It was an invaluable experience to be surrounded by an entire team full of such integrity, commitment, passion and above all, genuine support for each other and the production. I feel very honoured and proud to have been a part of creating this opera and the role of Perdita for a world premiere.”

Madeleine Shaw – ENO Harewood Artist 2006-11

“A stand out memory would be the first opera I performed in at ENO: a stunning production of Death in Venice directed by Deborah Warner. Despite my role being tiny, this was a show of such beauty and detail. Because of this, the show went on to La Monnaie, Amsterdam and La Scala and I am now the world authority on ‘A Beggar Woman’. Wonderful memories of fabulous casts, incredible music, design, stage craft and friendship.”

Nicky Spence – ENO Harewood Artist 2010-17

Being a Harewood Artist was an invaluable element of my development as a young artist. I owe ENO a lot as they challenged and championed me with the rare combination of honesty and opportunity to help hone my skills as a singing actor in a theatre which will always feel like home.

One of the highlights of being a Harewood Artist was the excitement of making my house debut as one of the main protagonists in Nico Muhly’s Two Boys in 2011. Something I will also always cherish is playing David in Richard Jones’ The Mastersingers of Nuremberg; to be even the smallest cog in that company endeavour was a complete honour!