Sophie Bevan

Rough ideas

by Robert Thicknesse

Robert Thicknesse applauds an initiative that provides a platform for new works-in-progress while testing the idea of what opera can and should be for today’s creators and audiences

Darwin Leonard Prakash

by Amanda Holloway

A chance encounter with a discerning voice coach prompted Darwin Leonard Prakash to trade in his life as a geology student in India to become a scholarshipwinning singing student in the UK, set for a high-flying career in opera.

Sophie Bevan

by Robert Thicknesse

Singing is a family affair for Sophie Bevan, the British soprano whose radiant, versatile voice is proving irresistible to the world’s major opera houses. Robert Thicknesse meets a seriously grounded young singer with innate musicality, a vivacious sense of fun and a fearless onstage presence that makes you feel there is nothing her voice can’t tackle

Song feast

by Simon Rees

The BBC Cardiff Singer of the World is much more than just a competition. The weeklong event in June feels like an international festival rather than a gladiatorial contest, celebrating the operatic voice in all its many colours. Simon Rees looks forward to this year’s instalment in the Welsh capital

Competitions diary

Opera Now looks ahead to some of this year’s key singing contests around the world

Secret helpers

by Jeremy Nicholas

Jeremy Nicholas throws light on the hidden art of the répétiteur, first-rate pianists and all-round communicators who perform a vital but often unacknowledged role in the opera house

Tim Yealland

by Robert Thicknesse

English Touring Opera’s education work represents some of the most successful and effective endeavours in this field, yet it receives no public funding. Robert Thicknesse meets Tim Yealland, the unsung hero of ETO’s outreach projects which help, enthuse, entertain and engage with marginalised audiences who might never otherwise have the chance to encounter opera

Nelson Eddy

by Benjamin Ivry

The American baritone Nelson Eddy (1901-1967) is remembered principally as a movie star whose velvety voice and amiable personality charmed filmgoers of the 1930s and ’40s. His onscreen celebrity has largely eclipsed his considerable accomplishments in the field of opera, where he diligently honed his natural talents as a singer

Fit for a king

by Amanda Holloway

Amanda Holloway visits the Royal Opera House Muscat, Oman’s unique performance venue which blends traditional craftsmanship with bold architectural statements from the country’s ancient past and forward-looking present

Travels with my opera glass

by Professor Anthony Ogus

Irrepressible wit, flamboyant fantasy and subversive satire are the flavour of the month for Professor Anthony Ogus, taking the form of Russian whimsy at the opera in Brussels to Gallic effervescence among a group of lively students – in Manchester, of all places

The power behind the throne

by Benjamin Ivry

A remastered set of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf ’s unpublished EMI recordings show the legendary diva full of youthful vitality, experimenting with her voice in a wide range of repertoire, with the Svengali-like presence of Walter Legge always lurking in the background. Benjamin Ivry reports