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Opportunity For Young Opera Singers

Opportunity For Young Opera Singers

Submissions for next year's PricewaterhouseCoopers Dame Malvina Major Emerging Artists are now being sought by The NBR New Zealand Opera. Applications close on 1st October, with auditions to be held in Auckland and Wellington during early November.

The 2004 PricewaterhouseCoopers Dame Malvina Major Emerging Artists: Wade Kernot, Kristen Darragh, Andrew Glover, Dame Malvina Major, John Harvey (PricewaterhouseCoopers) and Phillip Rhodes.

The year-long Programme is aimed at young New Zealand singers who are looking to gain valuable experience in the world of opera. The successful applicants must demonstrate exceptional vocal ability and the potential to be a professional performer, able to pursue an opera career with further training and experience.

The NBR New Zealand Opera is committed to giving talented young New Zealanders a head-start in the competitive world of professional music.

"With the amazing pool of young singers we have in this country, we need to foster our grass roots cultural talent - just as the sporting and business worlds do - to ensure it is here for tomorrow," says Dame Malvina Major. "There are operatic heroes and heroines just waiting to emerge - who deserve to be given the chance to do so and have their talent nurtured."

The PricewaterhouseCoopers Dame Malvina Major Emerging Artists are exposed to a learning environment that places emphasis on practical experience. This includes vocal tuition with Dame Malvina Major and coaching sessions with other industry professionals as well as the opportunity to cover or perform minor roles and to understudy principal roles in The NBR New Zealand Opera productions for that year. A variety of solo and ensemble concert engagements are also a feature of the year's work with the Company.

Almost all of the 30 singers who have participated in the programme to date have gone on to pursue national and international careers in music and opera, or are furthering their studies overseas. Well known Emerging Artists include Simon O'Neill, Ursula Allan, Katherine Wiles, Andrea Munro, Wendy-Dawn Thompson and Andrew Conley.

Current Emerging Artist Kristen Darragh says this year has been valuable to her future career on the stage, as she is about to leave New Zealand to pursue post-graduate opera studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London.

"To have the opportunity to not only but also work closely with industry professional, provides an incredible learning experience," she says. "Without a programme like this it would be difficult for me to have had these kinds of opportunities. I can now take away with me what I have learnt from these people and experiences, and strive to reach their level of ability.

Further information and applications to become a PricewaterhouseCoopers Dame Malvina Major Emerging Artist can be obtained by contacting The NBR New Zealand Opera's Artistic Administrator.

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