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The Rheingau Musik Festival: Elgar The Dream of Gerontius

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The Rheingau Musik Festival

In September 2017 I made my debut at the Rheingau Music Festival performing in the role of the Angel in Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius.   

 We started rehearsals with the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra and Conductor Paul McCreesh, Brenden Gunnell tenor, Marcus Eiche bass at the beautiful neo baroque Laeiszhalle (formerly Musikhalle Hamburg) which is the home of the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra.   Composers such as Richard Strauss, Sergei Prokofiev and Igor Stravinsky played and conducted their works there. It survived World War II intact and Maria Callas gave several concerts there in the 60’s. 

It was also great to have the opportunity to see a little of the centre of Hamburg the following day before we travelled on to Frankfurt for a further rehearsal where the Philharmonia Chorus joined us in the Sendesaal concert hall in Frankfurt.

 Our performance of the Dream of Gerontius took place at the beautiful 12th century Eberbach Abbey, a former cistercian monastery located in the Rheingau Valley of Hesse area near the town of Eltville am Rhein. The Abbey was actually used in 1985/86 to film scenes for the movie “The Name of the Rose” starring Sean Connery!

 It was the most magical setting for the performance which was given to a capacity audience in the Abbey.  I was so lucky to have family and friends travel over for the performance which made the whole experience very special.  

There was a little time to explore the Altstadt (old town) in Frankfurt on our final day which contains many of Frankfurt’s most important sights, including the Romerberg plaza with the famed Romer City Hall.


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