It’s probably the best-kept musical secret in Wendover -- the thrilling quality of the young soloists who enhance the biannual Wendover Choral Society concerts. These young men and women are already multiple winners of competitions or beneficiaries of prestigious scholarships by the time they bring their Royal Academy-honed talents to St Mary’s, and they often go on to have stellar careers.
The next concert, on May 20th,, is no exception. For its performance of Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle, WCS will be joined by an enticing quartet.
Soprano Eleanor Broomfield is currently on the Royal Academy’s Masters programme. She has already performed a range of operatic roles and concert solos across the country and abroad, including Young Vixen in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen at Longborough Opera House and Haydn’s Heiligmesse at Cadogan Hall with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
Irish mezzo soprano Carolyn Holt has appeared in venues such as the Royal Festival Hall and Wigmore Hall and sung roles including Prince Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus (Winterbourne Opera) and La Zia Principessa in Puccini's Suor Angelica (National Theatre of Ireland). Both have worked under the renowned conductor Sir Mark Elder and are soloists for the Royal Academy’s prestigious Bach Cantata series.
Tenor Alex Aldren is on a full scholarship at the Royal Academy’s Opera School and has worked alongside singers such as Ian Bostridge and Sir Willard White. He has performed as a soloist at the top UK venues such as the Royal Albert Hall and in countries as far apart as Norway and Cuba.
Baritone Niall Anderson, originally from Fife and now studying at the Royal Academy of Music in London, has sung choral pieces for the Queen and in the BBC Proms. His work in opera includes title roles in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas and in Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro.
The choir and soloists will be accompanied this time by Tim Byram-Wigfield, for 10 years Director of Music of St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, who will give St Mary’s organ a rare public airing. He will be joined by concert pianist Jérôme Sadler, a former junior fellow at the Royal College of Music.
All will be ably conducted by WCS’s colourful Music Director, Peter Bassano, a former Royal College of Music professor and prolific orchestral conductor who is descended from a family of Venetian musicians brought to play in the court of King Henry VIII.
With these talented musicians on your doorstep, who needs London?