Rachel Nicholls Dts 2400X900

Rachel Nicholls masterclass

A masterclass with dramatic soprano Rachel Nicholls and budding Wagnerians from Longborough's 2024 company, accompanied by Harry Sever.

Singers will include Sky Ingram, Toki Hamano, and Kristel Vinter Knudsen.

This event is part of Between the Ring, our standalone series of exciting events designed to fit around our Ring cycle. You don’t need a ticket to the Ring to book for these events.


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Rachel Nicholls is now widely recognised as one of the most exciting dramatic sopranos of her generation.  

Following her debut at London’s Royal Opera as Third Flowermaiden/ Parsifal, she has sung a wide repertoire of baroque, classical and contemporary repertoire in opera and concert throughout the UK and Europe, including the Edinburgh Festival and BBC Proms, and forged a close relationship with Masaaki Suzuki and Bach Collegium Japan, with whom she made several recordings. Other conductors with whom she has worked include Sir Colin Davis, Sir Andrew Davis, Sir Mark Elder, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Sir Simon Rattle, Sir Roger Norrington, Richard Hickox, Valery Gergiev, Daniele Gatti and Gianandrea Noseda.

She first came to notice as a dramatic soprano with her highly acclaimed performances as Brünnhilde for Longborough Festival Opera, culminating in complete Ring Cycles in 2013, followed by Isolde / Tristan und Isolde in 2014.  In 2013 she sang Senta / Die fliegende Hollander for Scottish Opera and in 2014 Leonore / Fidelio for the Bergen National Opera. (read more)

Harry Sever Cr James Rose 800Px

BBC Music Magazine ‘Rising Star’ conductor Harry Sever studied at Oxford University and trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Royal Academy of Music. A finalist in both the LSO’s Donatella Flick and the Athens International Conducting Competitions, recent and upcoming engagements include Cavalleria Rusticana / Aleko (Opera North), Siegfried (Sønderjyllands Symfoniorkester / Den Ny Opera), Carmen (Opera North), Fantasio (Garsington), La traviata (Opera Holland Park); concerts with the orchestra of Welsh National Opera and recordings with the orchestra of Opera North.

He is currently the Ring Cycle Conducting Fellow at Longborough Festival Opera, and Music Director of the Cambridge Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. 

As an Assistant Conductor and member of music staff, Harry has worked with Scottish Opera, Opera North, Kammerakademie Potsdam, English National Opera, the Royal Danish Opera, Den Jyske Opera, Garsington, Opera Holland Park, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra at the Grange Festival, and the Britten Sinfonia at Sadler’s Wells. His education work has included projects with The Royal Opera House Covent Garden, The Royal Opera Academy, Copenhagen, British Youth Opera, Birmingham Conservatoire and Trinity Laban Conservatoire.

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Sky Ingram is an Australian soprano, of English, Scottish and Norwegian ancestry, who trained at the Elder Conservatorium, WA Academy of Performing Arts, Guildhall School Opera Course, and the National Opera Studio in London. Sky has performed oratorio, concert and recital repertoire around Australia, the UK, New York, Norway, France, and Germany, and has sung on ABC and BBC radio. Music awards & scholarships include; Opera Awards Foundation Bursary, 5MBS Young Performer of the Year, SA Young Achiever of the Year, Royal Overseas League Trophy, Scholarships to GSMD & NOS, and is a George Boland, Australian Music Foundation, Tait Memorial, and Wingate Scholar. 

Previous roles include: Donna Elvira/Don Giovanni (Garsington Opera), Rusalka/Rusalka (Valladolid, Spain), Lea/Glare & Venus/Orpheus (Royal Opera House UK), Avis/The Wreckers (Bard SummerScape, New York), Fiordiligi/Cosi fan tutte, Musetta/La Bohème & Dido/Dido and Aeneas (ETO), Helena/A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Musetta/La Bohème, Katya cvr./Katya Kabanova, Alcina cvr./Alcina (Opera North), La Contessa/Le Nozze di Figaro (Kristiansand Norway & Nevill Holt Opera).

Recently Sky debuted with the Hallé Orchestra in their Viennese Concert tour, Foreign Princess/Rusalka with Garsington Opera & the Edinburgh International Festival, Female Chorus/The Rape of Lucretia with The Royal Opera House Covent Garden, and the title role of Fedora for IF Opera. Upcoming roles include; Woglinde cvr./Rheingold and Götterdämmerung in Wagner’s Ring Cycle for Longborough Festival Opera and Fiordiligi/Così fan tutte for State Opera South Australia.

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Toki Hamano is a London-based Japanese Baritone. He is joining English National Opera 23/24 season as a Chorus Fellow.

A graduate from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Alexander Gibson opera school, Guildhall School of Music and Drama and Tokyo University of the Arts, Toki trained with Scott Johnson and John Evans.

He worked with Grange Park Opera, Scottish Opera and Opera Holland Park. He took part in the Serena Fenwick Programme 2023 with British Youth Opera.

Operatic roles include Fater in Hänsel und Gretel (RCS), Minskman in Flight (RCS), Zuane in La Gioconda (GPO) and Tborite 1 in the Excursions of Mr Broucek (GPO) and Nym and Page (cover) in Sir John in love (BYO), Dandini in La Cenerentola (Barefoot Opera), Forester in the Cunning Little Vixen (HGO), Guccio in Il Trittico: Gianni Schicchi (Scottish Opera), Benoit and Marcello (cover) in the La Boheme (Hurn Court Opera), Dutchman (cover) in the Flying Dutchman (Opera up close), Pilgrim (cover) in the Pilgrim’s progress (BYO).

He has been generously supported by Opera Prelude, RCS Scholarship, McGlashan Charitable Trust, the Leverhulme Trust and Japan public-private partnership student study abroad program.

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Danish soprano Kristel Vinter Knudsen was a finalist in the Mastersingers Wagner Vocal Competition in 2022 and a 2023 London Wagner Society Bayreuth Scholar.

This season, she makes her debut as Chrysothemis/Elektra in Berlin before returning to Longborough for their complete Ring Cycle, having previously covered Gutrune in Götterdämmerung last season. 

Recent engagements include 2. Blumenmädchen/Parsifal (New Palace Opera), 5. Magd/Elektra (Regents Opera) and Silvia/Zanetto (Aalborg Opera Festival).

In 2021/2022, Kristel was a Young Artist with Teatro Grattacielo New York with whom she performed the role of Elettra in the inaugural performance of Mozart’s Idomeneo, Re di Creta on the island of Crete. Other roles include Micaëla/Carmen (Regents Opera), Donna Elvira/Don Giovanni (Saffron Opera Group, Cover), Donna Anna/Don Giovanni (Ensemble OrQuesta) and Mimì/La Bohème (North Wales Opera Studio).

Kristel graduated from the David Seligman Opera School at the RWCMD in 2022, where she sang the roles of Rosalinde/Die Fledermaus, La Contessa/Le Nozze di Figaro, Miss Jessel/The Turn of the Screw and Donna Elvira/Don Giovanni. 

Prior to this, she completed an MA in German and Russian at the University of St Andrews, where she was awarded the Cedric Thorpe Davie Memorial Prize for an outstanding contribution to the musical life of the university.

Lfo23 Fairy Queen Event London Nov 22 Cr Matthew Williams Ellis 25

between the ring

See more about our series of events around each cycle, between performance days.