Longborough Festival Opera: Emerging Artists 2023

Case Studies

Arts Grant
Longborough Festival Opera: Emerging Artists 2023
Photo: Jorge Lizalde

A grant was made in May 2023 towards LFO’s Emerging Artists Programme.  Work with emerging artists is crucial to Longborough’s ethos, building on its experience to provide first-class productions for the benefit of artists and audiences.

The Emerging Artists Programme attracts artists at the start of their professional careers, and selects the best talent from a wide pool of applicants.  361 singers applied in Summer 2022 from which 90 were selected for in-person auditions and 12 were selected to be part of the 2023 ensemble to perform Purcell’s The Fairy Queen, based on Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The artists spent five weeks rehearsing in London, under the guidance of Director Polly Graham, Co-Music Directors Harry Sever and Naomi Burrell and Assistant Conductor/Repetiteur Satoko Doi-Luck. The cast also had the benefit of working with Movement Director Carmine de Amicis and participating in an in-depth workshop on the principals of rhetoric in Renaissance drama with actor Edward Bennett.  During stage rehearsals and performances, the artists spent two weeks living in or near to Longborough, either in rented accommodation or staying with volunteer hosts, consolidating the company ethos of the project.

The programme provides emerging artists with a platform to attract the ear of agents, producers and media and all participants gained major soloistic experience in a medium sized house. This particular production gave the artists exposure to a rare and unusual form of opera, and significant critical acclaim, as well as the joy of a sold out run of shows and five star reviews. The Stage described the show as "a triumph".

Keeping in contact with alumni helps provide a longer-term impact of the EA programme and Longborough is thrilled that so many artists have gone on to thriving careers and perform in major opera houses both in the UK and internationally. Many also return to feature in main roles in future seasons.

£5,000 grant awarded in May 2023
Thanks to your support, we have been able to support a very talented group of emerging artists who have had their first opportunity to perform on a professional stage and advance their craft and careers."