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Carleton House

It was a joy to congratulate the recipients of the evening’s prizes, all of the pupils, and everyone who had been a part of the school year.  I was so proud to see and hear that Carleton House is growing from strength to strength with the hard work of all the teachers, the people that support the school and most of all the wonderful achievements and spirit of  the boys and girls there.

What a treat to see Music thriving in the school with performances by the boys and girls on guitar, piano and some great singing  – Mrs Harris (music teacher) had done a brilliant job!

Carleton House Prize Giving

The evening brought back tonnes of happy memories for me of the special times at school there.  The Carleton House motto “They can because they think they can” is certainly as poignant to me today as it was when I first began to understand what it meant!



Wigmore Hall Recital

Wigmore Hall


On Monday 11th July  2011 I performed a recital at Wigmore Hall, London with pianist James Baillieu.  Cellist  Tim Lowe also performed in the concert that was presented by the Worshipful Company of Musicians’ Company Concerts and Maise Lewis Young Artists Fund. Our recital was the final concert of  the Monday Platform series at Wigmore Hall.

 “The Monday Platform is a joint initiative between five organisations whose similar aim is to nuture and support young professional musicians. Whilst providing unique performance opportunities. The Monday Platform also gives Wigmore Hall audiences a chance to hear the very best emerging young artists in a regular monthly series.” Monday Platform series

 Built in 1901 by the piano firm Bechstein, Wigmore Hall is such a magical venue with an inspiring heritage of wonderful musicans that have performed there.  It was a great privilege to perform there once again and such an enjoyable recital! With thanks to WCOM, Maise Lewis Young Artists Fund and the Monday Platform Series.

Kathryn x

“I think that it is wonderful that young artists get a chance to perform on the stage of the greatest small hall in the world, Wigmore Hall.” Malcolm Martineau

Wigmore Hall Recital

Bridgewater Hall

It was a great pleasure to join Conductor Yan Pascal Tortelier  and the Royal Northern  College of Music Symphony Orchestra for an evening of American Music at Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall.   The concert programme included orchestral pieces Bela Bartok’s ‘Concerto for Orchestra’ and the George Gershwin ‘Catfish Row’ (Symphonic Suite from Porgy and Bess).

The Bridgewater Hall is Manchester’s international concert venue and is a stunning building. It was such a wonderful experience to perform on the stage there and to sing Aaron Copland’s Old American songs with the RNCM Symphony Orchestra- “The Boatman’s Dance” “Simple Gifts” and “At the River.”

The evening was a terrific way to mark my long association with the RNCM and the completion of my studies there.  I was so thrilled to see so many familiar faces in the audience and to have such a memorable opportunity to say a fond farewell!

Kathryn x

Voice and Piano recording of Aaron Copland’s  Simple Gifts

“Perfect Pitch” Concert

© Peter Lovatt

It was a real honour to be invited to perform at the 150th Anniversary of Birkenhead School on Saturday 18th June 2011. I have been so fortunate to have had a long standing relationship with the internationally renowned Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra since beginning my vocal studies.  I first performed with them at the age of 18 in several local concerts and was then given the fantastic opportunity to perform with the RLPO and Conductor Carl Davis CBE, at the famous Leeds Castle concerts in Kent and later with Conductor Vasily Petrenko at the Opening Ceremony of Liverpool’s Capital of Culture Year at the Liverpool Echo Arena.

© Peter Lovatt

I always enjoy performing at outdoor concerts as I love the relaxed atmosphere of the evenings, the sense of celebration and close rapport with the audience – (and seeing all of their wonderful picnic creations and costumes!)   I was particularly thrilled to be able to perform again with the RLPO  under the baton of their wonderful Chief Conductor Vasily Petrenko at this event.

Birkenhead School in association with their media partners Wirral News, for the first time, organised a spectacular public event as the grand finale of their 150th Anniversary celebrations. The school established in 1871 is based on a wonderful spacious “village green” campus which on a daily basis is home to boys and girls of age three to 18 years. The Headmaster John Clark and his staff did an amazing job in organising such a spectacular event.

Thankfully the weather, despite unfavourable forecasts, was really kind to us and much to everyone’s relief  – although it was a chilly evening for June! 

@Peter Lovatt

 After an afternoon of rehearsals the concert commenced with the Birkenhead School’s Big Band and the audience of 3,000+ were then treated to performances by some of the schools very talented young pupils.  Roger Philips from BBC Radio Merseyside compèred the evening and the RLPO then took to the stage with Vasily.  It was great privilege for me to join these talented musicians singing some Bizet, Saint-Saens, Lehar and Lerner & Loewe in the first half of the concert and Boubil & Schonberg and Rodgers & Hammerstein in the second.  The programme concluded with Tchaikovsky’s, ‘1812 Overture’  with a spectacular firework display and  Elgar’s “Pomp and Circumstance.”   It is such a great moment to join the audience in singing ‘Land of Hope and Glory’  and witness the sea of flags across the audience!

A special thank you to everyone at Birkenhead School  for their wonderful organisation and hospitality, to Vasily and the orchestra and to all of the people who  attended  the concert for making the event such a special occasion.

Kathryn x

   Find out more about what’s on during Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2011/2012 season .


Jaqueline Du Pré and Spitalfields Recitals

I had a great time performing in two recitals last week with fellow YCAT artist James Baillieu.   The first recital took place at the The Jaqueline Du Pré Music Building  on June 10th 2011.

“Born in Oxford on January 26, 1945 Jacqueline du Pré is arguably the greatest talent to ever play the cello.  She combined mind, heart, body and soul to produce the most expressive tones ever to emanate from the instrument.”

” The Jaqueline Du Pré Music Building was the first purpose-built concert hall to be built in Oxford since the Holywell Music Room in the time of Handel. Its inspiration was the wish to create a living memorial to a great artist. A  joint fundraising campaign by St Hilda’s College, of which Jacqueline du Pré was an Honorary Fellow, and the Musicians’ Benevolent Fund raised over £1 million with the support of a wide range of institutions and Trusts, and very many private individuals…The Building was opened in September 1995.”

It was a privilege to sing in such a lovely venue  … and there was a Jacqueline du Pré  bronze sculpture alongside us on stage which I loved!  I have put a little picture below.

“The College is pleased to be able to draw on the support of Alumnae of the College, Friends of the JdP, private trusts and public funding bodies in ensuring that the artistic, educational and community programmes which take place in the JdP remain a truly living memorial of Jacqueline du Pré.”




The Spitalfields festival recital on 14th June 2011 was supported by the Mercer’s company and Young Concert Artist Trust and  took place at St Leonard’s  Shoreditch church.

Spitalfields Music: the home of exceptional music making in London’s East End. We create astounding live music experiences through performances and learning & participation. Inspired by the spirit of the area, its people and their global and local influences, we take live music as our core, exploring performance, artists and communities.”

 The Heath Quartet also performed with James Baillieu that evening – the quartet had just returned from performing a series of conerts in Salamanca, Spain and will be performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival across August 2011 and once again with James on 16th July 2011 at the Music at Paxton Summer Festival. They are all wonderful musicians  -catch them if you can!

Thank you to everyone involved in organising the recent rectials and to the lovely audiences that came along to support them!

Kathryn x

Samling Foundation – Masterclass

During the week of the Sunday 15 – Sunday 22 May 2011 I had an amazing time participating in a Samling Masterclass week and gained wonderful insights into repertoire preparation, performance and life as a musician.

“Samling transforms lives. We take highly talented young people on individual journeys in music”  – 2011

Who?  I was joined on the masterclass week by fellow ‘Samling Scholars’   Meeta Raval,  Eva Ganizate and  Jennifer France (sopranos) ,  Stephen Chambers (tenor),   Benjamin Appl  (Baritone) and  Elizabeth Burgess and Jocelyn Freeman (pianists). Karon Wright (Samling Chief Executive) was on hand with help and support and our Samling masterclass  team comprised celebrated artists  John Mark Ainsley (Tenor), Della Jones (Mezzo Soprano),  Paul Farrington (Vocal Consultant) and Caroline Dowdle (pianist)  

Where?  I travelled up to Cumbria to stay in the beautiful setting of Farlam Hall, a family run and  country manor hotel , which was our ‘home’  for the week.   The setting of the hotel in 12 acres of gardens with its elegant drawing rooms, amazing cuisine (the tea breaks and home-made bread were a highlight!) and lovely staff made our stay very special.

What?  During the week we had a very full schedule of classes.  We were given the opportunity to rehearse and work with the pianists and then perform our repertoire for the tutors.  During the masterclasses we were able to explore the pieces in many different ways: through the interpretation, technique, language and music …and the learning didn’t stop when you had finished singing in your class – there was so much to learn from everyone’s personal experiences as musicians and to have the opportunity to watch the other singers working with the input from the  tutors and pianists was really valuable.  Also, during the week we even had the opportunity to share and explore poetry.

Performances …We travelled from Farlam Hall to The Sage in Newcastle on the Wednesday for our public masterclass session.    We took the scenic route to catch a glimpse of parts of the Hadrians wall path, see the Millenium Bridge in Newcastle and there was an amazing view of the The Sage which is a fabulous venue!    

The Sage, Gateshead.

The Sage, Gateshead.

 My masterclass session was with Della who helped me explore Olga’s aria from Tchaikovsky’s ‘Eugene Onegin’ in more depth.     

By the end of the week at Farlam Hall I was starting to panic about whether I would still be able to fit into my concert dress after eating all the wonderful food and glorious cakes… 

On Saturday evening we travelled back to The Sage (I squeezed into the dress!) and it was a lovely way to finish the week with the Samling Gala concert  – the programme was bursting with arias, songs,  as well as operatic ensembles.   It was such a lovely treat to have Della Jones and John Mark Ainsley join us for the Brahms’ Liebeslieder Waltzer.   

Samling Foundation Scholars

Samling Scholars concert at the Sage, Gateshead

I spoke to audience members afterwards who had also attended the public masterclass earlier in the week and it was great to have their insight into the Samling experience –   there is so much to learn from how your performance has been received by the audience!

There was such a supportive atmosphere throughout the week and across the two public events.  I learned a great deal during the week from everyone involved and in such a short space of time – there is so much to reflect upon and it is an experience I will never forget.  Thanks to everyone involved and good luck to all of the fellow and future Samling Scholars!! 

Kathryn x

 What is the Samling Foundation?

 Since 1996 the Samling Foundation have been working with some of the world’s greatest artists to help nurture young professional musicians as they embark upon their careers.

“Distinguished singers from around the world, led by our Patron Sir Thomas Allen, together with internationally celebrated accompanists, artists and teachers came to Cumbria to lead week-long residencies that could and did change young professionals’ lives.”  – 2011

 Hear more about Samling from Sir Thomas Allen at…

“Our Masterclass Programme is unique in the UK and provides singers and pianists – Samling Scholars – with a sympathetic environment where they can work, perform and, above all, be inspired.”  – 2011

Kathryn is an opera singer, concert and song recitalist from Liverpool. Described by What's on Stage as 'One of Britain's brightest young mezzos' and named as The Times 'Rising Star of Classical Music.' Kathryn regularly works with leading singers, instrumentalists, orchestras and ensembles in concerts and broadcasts nationally and internationally.

Kathryn has performed leading opera roles for companies including English National Opera, Glyndebourne and Opera North. She has made recordings for Hyperion, Chandos, Somm, Nyman Records and her debut CD 'Love's Old Sweet Song' was released by Champs Hill Records. Kathryn was a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist 2015-17.

Kathryn trained at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, studying voice with Susan Roper and piano with Naomi Kayayan. Her many awards include the Joyce and Michael Kennedy Award for the Singing of Richard Strauss, Susan Chilcott Scholarship and The Joaninah Trust Award. Kathryn is an Associate Artist of the Royal Northern College of Music and teaches singing at The University of Manchester.

Kathryn co-founded Mersey Wave Music Choir in 2012 in her home city of Liverpool and was recipient of the Merseyside Woman of the Year Arts Award in 2016. Kathryn has a passion for championing and supporting live music making within community and healthcare settings; especially to support staff, patients and relatives throughout healthcare. In loving memory of her parents who were both cancer patients.

Read More here: Music and Cancer


Copyright Kathryn Rudge 2019