Opera Prelude Returns to Leith Hill Place

James Way tenor sings at Leith Hill Place

Join us on Saturday, 2 June at 6pm for an inspiring evening of opera performed by talented young musicians.

Remembering the past

100 years after the end of the First World War, we are proud to present this evening recital,: Forever England: English song in the years of the First World War in celebration of English Song and in particular the work of William Denis Browne, a British composer whose fantastic song output was cut brutally short by his death during action in the Gallipoli Campaign.

As the childhood home of composer, Ralph Vaughan Williams, who serviced as stretcher bearer during the First World War, Leith Hill Place is a beautiful and appropriate place for such an enchanting performance of English music, surrounded by the very English countryside setting of the Surrey Hills.The evening has been made possible by the generous support of The Vaughan Williams Charitable Trust.

Opera Prelude

Opera Prelude is a small, exciting charity, which supports the early career development of young musicians through the provision of experience and fairly paid performance opportunities such as this one at Leith Hill Place. Opera Prelude is run by volunteers and since its launch in 2010 it has grown into a professional Arts organisation presenting a critically acclaimed and exciting programme of lecture recitals, workshops, masterclasses, concerts and rarely-performed or rediscovered operas in prestigious and historic locations across London and Oxfordshire.

Natalie Burch, pianist

Pianist Natalie Burch specialises in vocal accompaniment and is widely in demand as a song pianist across London and the UK. She was winner of the accompaniment prize at the 2015 Maureen Lehane Awards at Wigmore Hall, a finalist alongside 2nd Prize winner James Way at the 2017 Kathleen Ferrier Awards and is a current Britten- Pears Young Artist. In 2017 she was a finalist in the Somerset Song Prize, a recipient of the Sam Hutchings Prize to study at Oxenfoord with Malcolm Martineau and a Help Musicians grant to study on the Oxford Lieder Mastercourse led by Wolfgang Holzmair. Natalie is co-founder of SongSpiel who are currently in residency at METAL with Ensemble Perpetuo and composer Cheryl Frances-Hoad working on her song cycle The Thought Machine. She previously studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where she is now a staff pianist.

James Way, tenor

Born in Sussex, tenor James Way was winner of 2nd Prize in the 62nd Kathleen Ferrier Awards at Wigmore Hall. He was awarded the 2016 Simon Sandbach Award from Garsington Opera, the ‘most promising singer’ award at the Dean and Chadlington Singing Competition, an Independent Opera Voice Fellowship, and is a former Britten-Pears Young Artist.

James has also been awarded the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment’s Rising Stars prize for the 2017-2018 season, and will perform regularly with the orchestra as soloist in programmes including the role of Jupiter in Handel’s Semele under Christophe Roussett, Haydn The Creation under Adam Fischer and various Bach Cantatas as part of the OAE’s ‘Bach, the Universe and Everything’ series at Kings Place, London.

Opera credits include his debut with the Philharmonia Orchestra and Jakub Hrůša in the role of the Holy Fool (Boris Godunov) at the Royal Festival Hall; the Ballad Singer (Owen Wingrave) for the Aldeburgh and Edinburgh International Festivals (conducted by Mark Wigglesworth), and several roles at Garsington Opera including ‘Davy’ in Roxanna Panufnik’s new opera Silver Birch (conducted by Douglas Boyd).

How to book

Tickets for the concert cost £28 and should be pre-booked on 0344 249 1895. Numbers are limited so please book early to avoid any disappointment.

For more information please call Leith Hill Place on 01306 711685 or email leithhillplace@nationaltrust.org.uk