On song: opera ensemble to visit to give recital and build experience

BEAUTIFUL VOICES: Operatic ensemble Voci Stupende will perform at the Orange Regional Conservatorium on June 1. Pictured are (front) Sylvie Humphries, Zoe Drummond, Hannah Fraser, Michelle Ryan, Laura Crocco and (back) Damian Arnold, Jared Lillehagen, Benjamin Burton and Daniel Nicholson. Photo contributed

BEAUTIFUL VOICES: Operatic ensemble Voci Stupende will perform at the Orange Regional Conservatorium on June 1. Pictured are (front) Sylvie Humphries, Zoe Drummond, Hannah Fraser, Michelle Ryan, Laura Crocco and (back) Damian Arnold, Jared Lillehagen, Benjamin Burton and Daniel Nicholson. Photo contributed

AN ensemble of fledgling opera singers will take to the stage at the Orange Regional Conservatorium for an intimate recital of operatic favourites and lesser-known pieces on June 1.

Voci Stupende is a group of eight singers, recently graduated from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, who are looking to build their performance experience by bringing their recital to regional areas.

The ensemble began in July last year after the singers made a trip to Armidale for three recitals and soprano Sylvie Humphries said the touring just grew from there.

“It’s really hard to get work as an opera singer. It’s really tough and there’s not much work in Australia,” she said.

“To be hired as an opera singer, you need lots of experience and Voci Stupende is designed to give young singers that experience.”

Young singers often move overseas or take up part-time work to make an income.

Ms Humphries said the idea was to eventually have enough financial backing for the group to support longer regional tours and pay the singers a decent wage, but it was still early days.

“We’ve had so much positive feedback already. We found we had a lot of people who came along [to the recitals in Armidale] and were moved by it,” she said.

“The concerts in regional Australia are more intimate than in Sydney because you’re right there with the audience.”

Voci Stupende will perform operatic favourites, including the Toreador Song from Carmen by Georges Bizet and pieces from Mendelssohn, Mozart and Schubert at the concert on June 1 at the Orange Regional Conservatorium.

The recital will run for about one and a half hours. Tickets cost $35 per person and can be purchased at www.trybooking.com/84783.

For more information, contact the conservatorium on 6361 7974.

alexandra.king@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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