Andrew Irwin wins BBC NI / ACNI award

Tenor Andrew Irwin has been selected to receive a BBC Northern Ireland & Arts Council of Northern Ireland Young Musicians Platform Award. As well as funds towards career development projects the award includes BBC broadcast opportunities and an appearance with The Ulster Orchestra. Hear more on BBC In Tune.

Bechara Moufarrej and Bayerische Staatsoper fundraise for Beruit

Fundraising for the victims devastated by the explosion in his native Beirut last year tenor Bechara Moufarrej joins the Bayerische Staatsoper Orchestra under Toufic Maatouk to perform Salam Li Beirut – To Beirut with Peace by Fadi Kassis. The contribution from Antonine University Choir was filmed in the ruins of Beirut’s Grand Theatre and the venture was made possible with support from Schulterschluss Initiative  and the Bayerische Staatsoper.

Ron Gonsalves – RIP

News has reached me of the sad death of Ron Gonsalves at home in France on November 12.

When I started out over 30 years ago Ron was a genial and generous colleague, always very welcoming at performances and BACA (British Association of Concert Agents, the precursor to IAMA) meetings. I then joined Ron Gonsalves Management when he had to step back to recover from heart surgery and subsequently acquired his list of artists on his full retirement 1997.

Apart from his artists’ management activities Ron was pivotal in promoting The Songmaker’s Almanac series alongside Graham Johnson which did much to re-establish the Wigmore Hall as a pre-eminent recital venue. He invited Jonathan Miller to stage the St Matthew Passion which was ground-breaking at the time and had great success touring to Europe, the US as well as being recorded and filmed for BBC TV in 1994.

The youngest of fourteen children, a big presence and a man of not inconsiderable passions, Ron was a great character.

Robert Howarth’s Baroque Christmas online

Early music specialist Robert Howarth directs the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in the final concert of their Autumn season. Celebrating with a programme of baroque seasonal works by Handel, JS Bach, Vivaldi and Corelli the concert also features soprano Anna Devin and violinist Alina Ibragimova. The event will be streamed on December 16 at 19:30 GMT and available for 30 days via https://bsolive.com/events/christmas-digital/.

Kraemer All Stars Messiah live in London

Nicholas Kraemer - conductor

Nicholas Kraemer conducts the English Chamber Orchestra and Voces 8 with Carolyn Sampson, Iestyn Davies, Andrew Staples and Matthew Brook at Cadogan Hall, London. With a reduced running time of 80 minutes the two performances on December 6 with a socially-distanced audience are sold out but a deferred ‘live’ stream of the event will be available for a month from December 11 on the Live from London platform.

Polly Graham’s Orlando production live stream from Vienna

The Vienna State Opera is offering a free stream of director Polly Graham’s 2019 production of Olga Neuwirth Orlando for 24 hours from at 19:00 (CET) on November 7. Drawn from the Virginia Woolf novel of the same name Orlando is conducted by Matthias Pintscher and the cast includes Kate Lindsey in the title role. https://play.wiener-staatsoper.at/

Zoë Brookshaw Bach where she belongs

Zoë Brookshaw singing Höchster, was ich habe with the OAE earlier this year

Soprano Zoë Brookshaw returns to King’s Place on October 4 to perform the solo Bach Cantata Ich bin vergnügt mit meinen Glück BWV 84 with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. Steven Devine directs.

Sam Boden back on stage in Lille

Samuel Boden with Le Concert d’Astrée last season

Tenor Samuel Boden sings the haute-contre role of Idamante in Campra Idomenée with Le Concert d’Astrée and Emmanuelle Haïm. The reduced version of the work, entitled Le Retour d’Idoménée, is derived from the original production concept by Àlex Ollé and is part of the L’Inattendu Festival that opens the season at Opéra de Lille on October 3.