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Welcome, whether you have been following Greg since he first came to the attention of the media or have just ‘discovered’ him a good place to start will be the ‘Been there….’ page, and its sub-
Go to the ‘High Notes’ page for information on the high male voice. Also on this page Greg reveals what some of his all-
Details of the range of music courses that Greg has attended in recent years can be found on the Opera Courses page and its sub-
Performance contact details and a ‘Message for Greg’ box, which he really enjoys receiving, can be found on the ‘Contacts’ page.
Year three of Greg’s studies was, like the first two years, full and demanding. One of the highlights of the year was the module that he undertook in the first term which culminated in a musical and theatrical spectacle celebrating the work of the renowned Irish author James Joyce entitled Portrait of the Artist. One of the concerts programme credits Greg received was as a composer/arranger for his input to a haunting version of The Last Rose of Summer, one of the pieces played for the audience in the foyer before the performances. He also danced in one of the scenes. His greatest input though was devising and appearing in two scenes, one in each half, where he appeared with two other male members of the cast as the ‘Museyroom’ ladies. The first half appearance of the Museyroom ladies afforded some much needed light relief in what was an otherwise somewhat intense and dark part one; a fact that was noted by a local press review that described the scene as something of a cross between Father Ted and Monty Python. Another highlight of Greg’s final year was a concert given by The Chimera Ensemble where part of the programme included Unsuk Chin’s Cantatrix Sopranica. Greg sang the Countertenor vocal part for this complex modern piece where at one point part the Countertenor’s role involved producing high pitched notes from a part filled glass of water by circling the glass rim whilst singing equally high notes.
For all completing their degrees there is the question of what to do next? Greg wishes to continue his studies and has considered various possibilities for this. One option that has increasingly appealed for Greg is to study in Europe particularly Germany or Austria. An enquiry for more detailed information than was readily available on the internet to the Mozarteum University of Salzburg resulted in Greg being invited to go there and sing for the Head of Baroque studies. In January this year he flew out to a very, very cold Austria where he stayed for a couple of days before going onto Berlin. He thoroughly enjoyed his time in both Austria and Germany finding he liked the food and cultural experiences that both countries had to offer. Greg also, as planned, sang for the Head of Baroque at the Mozarteum and was thrilled to receive a very positive response from the session; strengthening his commitment to the idea of continuing his studies in Europe. However, his German language skills at present are not of a standard that he would need for study at an advanced level and so he presently is planning to move to Germany either towards the end of this year or the beginning of 2018 as living in a country is always one of the best ways to learn a new language or quickly enhance existing skills with a view to applying formally for advanced study after a period of work. A lot of planning to be done then.
Greg has lived in the beautiful city of York for the last three years whilst undertaking a Music Degree at the University. A member of the elite Russell Group of universities the University of York is one of the success stories of higher education in the UK, and has been just one of six post-
Greg has also, this Summer, been singing in an all male production of Tosca, which involved a degree of gender fluidity for some of the roles. Greg sang soprano with the chorus and was also a cover for the shepherd boy’s aria ‘Io de sospiri Mia’. Performances of Tosca took place in London on various dates throughout August. As part of his preparation for Tosca and other Summer recitals Greg continues to attend singing lessons with his present vocal coach Raymond Connell, a native Australian now based in London. (Previously Greg has enjoyed three years of happy collaboration with vocal teacher Linda Hutchison.) Since living in the UK his present coach Raymond has worked for both the Royal Academy of Music and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He presently runs the Raymond Connell Singing Studio.
More Summer News
This summer Greg was approached by an award winning music company with a commission; he was booked to record a piece, ‘The Window of Appearances’, from a modern opera by Glass where the main character is a Countertenor role. So, into an already busy schedule, he found himself having to speedily source a score and learn the aria as the company wanted to record it as quickly as possible for a project they were putting together.
Less than a week after the initial contact Greg found himself in London at perhaps the premier recording studios in Europe, Metropolis. The building that houses the studios is a Grade II listed former power station that was built in 1901; it was constructed substantially enough to protect nearby residents from noise and vibration ‘pollution’ produced by the enormous steam generators that the building originally housed. This exceptionally solid construction now benefits those recording inside, shielding them from the mayhem of present day London’s busy streetscape. Filled with the most up to date recording, mixing and remastering equipment artists and groups such as Queen, Michael Jackson, Lady GaGa, Amy Winehouse, will.i.am, The Stone Roses, Adele, and Rihanna have all availed themselves of the studios facilities.
Commercial considerations mean that further details need to be ‘kept under wraps’. The image to the right was taken just as Greg ‘wrapped up’ the recording.
Summer News 2017
Ready for the premiere performance of Tosca.
Read the Tosca page for more information on this exciting production.
Whilst no further details can be made available of the recording that Greg made at Metropolis you can hear a recording of one of the arias he sang at a Summer recital, ‘O del mio dolce ardor’, from the opera Paride ed Elena by Gluck. The third and least performed of Gluck’s reform operas the story covers the events that occurred between the judgement of Paris (Paride) to the flight of Paris and Helen (Elena) to Troy. The opera premiered in November 1770 with the role of Paride being sung by Giuseppe Millico an Italian soprano castrato who performed lead roles for several of Gluck’s operas including Orfeo ed Euridice. In this aria Paride declares his love for Elena singing that
The air which you breathe,
At last I will breathe -
a familiar and recurring sentiment expressed in songs of love by suitors across the centuries. Listen and enjoy the high notes.