A Remembrance Concert

Claire Lees, soprano, recently graduated from the Opera Course at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama. Claire continues to study with Yvonne Kenny. She is a Samling Artist and is supported by The D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust, The Kathleen Trust and is a recipient of an Independent Opera Voice Scholarship. 

Operatic roles include Yniold (cover), Pelleas et Melisande, Glyndebourne Festival Opera. Lauretta, Gianni Schicchi, Barbican Hall. Sœur Constance, Dialogues des Carmélites, GSMD. Pamina, The Magic Flute, Iford Arts. Foreign Woman, The Consul, GSMD. Yum Yum, The Mikado, National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company. Papagena, Die Zauberflöte, Birmingham Conservatoire. Drusilla, L’incoronazione di Poppea, Birmingham Conservatoire. 

 As part of scene performances, roles include Gretel, Hänsel und Gretel, Hero, Beatrice et Bénédict, Manon, Manon, Romilda, Serses, Sophie, Der Rosenkavalier, Zerlina, Don Giovanni, and Lisette, La Rondine.

Claire regularly performs with her duo partner in the Netherlands for the Vrienden van het Lied (Friends of the Song). This involves house recitals for lovers of song across the country.

Claire has performed in numerous venues such as the Wigmore Hall, the Barbican Hall, St James’ Piccadilly, St Martin-in-the-Fields and Peterborough Cathedral.  

Claire has worked with Iain Burnside on his Drums and Guns project in collaboration with the Juilliard School and Royal Irish Academy of Music, performing in Dublin, London and New York.

Claire has just finished her first season in the Glyndebourne Festival Chorus where she covered the role of Yniold in Debussy’s Pelleas et Melisande and sang in the chorus of Handel’s Guilio Cesare and Saul and Barber’s Vanessa.

Claire is currently touring with the Glyndebourne Chorus and next year she will perform a number of recitals of French repertoire across the Netherlands.

Baritone Jack Lawrence-Jones is a graduate of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He recently made his Aldeburgh Festival debut as a Britten-Pears Young Artist Alumnus. This summer Jack was an Alvarez Young Artist at Garsington Opera, singing in the chorus for Mozart’s ​Die Zauberflöte and Verdi’s ​Falstaff​, and ​playing the role of Diener 2 in Strauss’ 

Capriccio​, as well as covering the Count.

Operatic roles to date include the title role in Dove’s ​The Enchanted Pig (HGO), Tarquinius in Britten’s​TheRapeofLucretia(​GCMS),andPirateKinginGilbertandSullivan’s​ThePiratesof Penzance ​(CGSS, COS). Jack created the title role in ​Clive​, a new opera by Ben Ashby (Gestalt Arts), and played Thomas Bowdler ​in the UK premiere of Alex Paxton’s ​The Equivocal Harriet Bowdler​.

Recent outings on the concert platform include Haydn’s ​The Creation with Maldon Choral Society, Vaughan Williams’ ​Five Mystical Songs with the London Concert Choir, Handel’s Messiah at Our Lady of the Assumption and St Gregory, Warwick Street and Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music​​ in the Grenfell Tower Benefit Concert at the Cadogan Hall.

Jack has appeared in masterclasses with Robin Bowman, Susan McCulloch, Sarah Connolly, Roderick Williams, Peter Rose, Andrew Kennedy, Nicky Spence, Graham Johnson, Richard Stokes, Julius Drake, Susan Bickley, Thomas Quasthoff, and Edith Wiens.

In his spare time, Jack enjoys programming computers, playing squash and making pasta.

A graduate of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he formally trained as a bassoonist, Sebastian sings as a soloist and chorally in the UK and abroad whilst continuing his studies privately with Linda Hutchison. Recent operatic roles have included; Orestes Iphigénie en Tauride, Malatesta Don Pasquale, PelléasPelléas et Mellisande, Prince YeletskyQueen of Spades, Captain MacHeath The Beggar’s Opera, Masetto Don Giovan

ni,Cascada Merry Widow and Cox Cox and Box with companies such as New Sussex Opera, Surrey Opera, Opus Opera, OperaCoast, IrrationalTheatre, Opera Anywhere and Opera Danube. He has been a memeber of the Chorus at Longborough Festival Opera for the past two seasons in their critically acclaimed productions ofTannhäuser and Tristan und Isolde.

He has toured the UK with the National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company over the last two summers singing in the Chorus, taking on small roles and covering the principal parts.

Equally at home on the concert platform as the stage, Sebastian was a finalist in the British Music Association’s Art Song Prize 2015 and has featured as Soloist in works including Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on Christmas Carols, Serenade to Music various Bach Cantatas, Mozart’s Requiem, Bach Magnificat, Vaughan Williams’ Dona nobis pacem with the Brighton Festival Chorus and most recently, Handel’s Messiah with the East Sussex Bach Choir.
As a professional chorister, Sebastian has worked with numerous groups including Metro Voices, Blossom Street Choir and RSVP Voices along with regular depping work across London and can be heard on many recent blockbusters. He also sings in a vocal quartet, The J-Tones, who work all over the country for events from dinner parties to live radio broadcasts.

© New Sussex Singers 2018

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