Mario Solimene (baritone)

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Brazilian baritone Mario Solimene was born in Sao Paulo from an Italian family and began studying privately with the Brazilian singing teacher Carlos Vial in 1996. One year later he was accepted at the Sao Paulo Municipal School of Music, continuing to work under the same tutor, and completing the course with distinction in 2002. At the same time he continued to follow parallel professional directions, graduating in Law from Sao Paulo, and briefly working as a lawyer.

Leaving Brazil for England, he completed his training with distinction at the Royal Northern College of Music, obtaining a Post Graduate Diploma (2004) and a Masters Degree in Performance (2005), always under the guidance of the renowned teacher Patrick McGuigan. Almost at the same time he started to work on his concert and operatic repertoire with the pianist and conductor Paul Wynne Griffiths, from the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

Mario is a recipient of many singing awards, including The Vitae Foundation Award (2003 and 2004), The Rose Goulding Scholarship (2003), The Anne Ziegler Award (2004), The John Cameron Prize for Lieder (2004) and The William McLeod Johnstone Prize for Male Singers (2005). He has also performed in public master classes held by international artists, including Sir Thomas Allen, Sir John Tomlinson, Paolo Gavinelli, Ileana Cotrubas and John Fisher.

In Brazil he worked together with the Sao Paulo State Orchestra Ensemble and Sao Paulo Opera Theatre, participating in a series of concerts and the first ever recordings of the music of the Brazilian Colonial Period.Since then he has expanded his career to an international stage, appearing in concerts and operas throughout Europe, South America and Asia.

 Mario Solimene has been heard in roles such as Count di Luna in Il Trovatore (Opus 1 Opera and covering for Welsh National Opera), Scarpia in Tosca (Waterford Theatre Royal and Opus 1 Opera), Falstaff in Falstaff (AIYF Opera Garden), Malatesta in Don Pasquale (Clonter Opera), Rigoletto in Rigoletto and Renato in Un Ballo in Maschera (Royal Northern College of Music).

Recent conert appearances include Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with the Macao Orchestra China, conducted by Philip Pickett, Mozart’s Requiem with Manchester Camerata and Elgar’s A Sea Symphony with Nottingham Symphony Orchestra. His extensive repertoire includes the most significant works by J.S. Bach, C.P.E. Bach, Brahms, Elgar, Faure, Gounod, Haydn, Handel, Mozart, Puccini, Rossini, Vaughan-Williams and Verdi.

Future engagements include the roles of Sciarrone and Scarpia (cover) in Tosca in London’s Royal Albert Hall, Belcore in L’elisir D’amore and Escamillo in Carmen for Clonter Opera, and the Father (cover) in Hansel and Gretel for Welsh National Opera.

Helen Jarmany (mezzo-soprano)

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Helen Jarmany was born in 1980 in Blackburn. She started singing at the age of 12 with local amateur dramatic societies performing musical theatre. At the age of 14 she began singing lessons with Sylvia Alexander, and in 1998 joined the choir of Blackburn Music Society with whom she performed in various oratorios and concerts. As a soloist, she won a number of categories in the Blackburn Music Festivals of 1999 and 2000.

Helen is now in her fourth undergraduate year at the Royal Northern College of Music where she studies with Robert Alderson. Whilst at the RNCM, she has had many opportunities on the operatic stage including in the chorus of Tchaikovsky’s Queen of Spades in 2002 and Mozart’s Don Giovanni in 2003, the Second Witch and chorus in Purcell’s Didio and Aeneas in 2003 and in the chorus in Stavinsky’s The Rake’s Progress in 2004. Helen has also performed the roles of Marcellina  and Cherubino in excerpts from Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro and the role of La Badessa in Puccini’s Suor Angelica at the RNCM in 2004.

Outside of college, Helen has taken the role of Pallade and covered Ottavia in Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea in 2003 and the role of Micah in a fully staged production of Handel’s Samson in 2004 with the Yorke Trust.

Helen has participated in masterclasses with Julius Drake, Christine Rice and Amanda Roocroft. On the oratorio platform she has performed in Mozart’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah and Haydn’s Nelson Mass in Cyprus, 2004.

Helen appears by kind permission of the Principal, RNCM.

Angela Rowley (Soprano)

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Angela is a graduate in German from University College, London, and established a career in modern languages teaching before  beginning solo singing training with Keiran McNiff in Stockport. Since then she  has worked with many eminent teachers including Rae Woodland, Paul Farrington and the late Paul Hamburger.

Angela has performed throughout the UK and in Romania, France and Germany. Although happiest on the recital platform, she  has sung many

oratorio works with choral societies and orchestras. In November 2004 she was privileged to contribute to the memorial evening for Paul

Hamburger at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Angela performs regularly with orchestras, at Music Societies, lunchtime recitals, private functions and with male voice choirs. She coordinates Harmony '96 in Bramhall and runs singing workshops and master classes.

For more information about Angela Rowley, please visit her web site:

www.angelarowley.co.uk

Wendy Olsen

Wendy OlsenWendy Olsen grew up in Indiana, where forests and caves offer mystery and  excitement to young hikers. Even as a teenager, Wendy felt that books like Tolkien's  Lord of the Rings, the music of Grieg, and the physical setting of mixed forests  together reflect the glory and challenge of being alive. Wendy moved at age 18  to Beloit College in Wisconsin, where she studied piano, voice and choir as a  supplementary part of her university degree. After having a child she began studying  the flute, and she now plays flute for the Salford Wind Band and the Friends of the  Camerata orchestra. 

Wendy moved to Britain in 1981 to study at Oxford University where she received  a masters and doctoral degree in economics.

Wendy now works at Manchester University as a lecturer in socio-economic  research, and she has research experience in India, Sri Lanka and Ghana as well  as in the United Kingdom. Her research includes interviewing and statistics as  well as advice to government and research on behalf of the Equal Opportunities  Commission.

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