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Leigh Melrose

Baritone

  • Leigh Melrose has carved out a formidable reputation for the performance of new works. A wonderfully dynamic artist on both the concert and opera platform, Melrose is also in demand for core repertoire by composers such as Brahms, Britten, Mozart, Berg and Mahler.

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  • A graduate of St John’s College, Cambridge, and the Royal Academy of Music, Melrose’s opera engagements have taken him all over the world. He has sung the title role of Wozzeck in a new production at English National Opera and Salzburg Landestheater; Papageno Die Zauberflöte for Seattle Opera, Demetrius A Midsummer Night’s Dream for La Monnaie; Escamillo Carmen in the UK premiere of Calixo Bieito’s production at ENO and at the Royal Albert Hall and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra under Sakari Oramo; Figaro Il Barbiere di Siviglia for New York City Opera; Silvio I Pagliacci for Welsh National Opera; Britten’s Death in Venice at the Liceu, Barcelona; Papageno and Marcello La bohème for Opera Zuid; Sid Albert Herring for the Salzburger Landestheater, Opéra Comique and Opéra de Rouen; Ned Keene Peter Grimes for Vlaamse Opera and Opera Oviedo; the title role in Eugene Onegin, Longborough Festival Opera; and Tadeusz The Passenger, Ned Keene, Papageno, Bormenthal A Dog’s Heart, Count Marriage of Figaro, Rodolfo in Leoncavallo’s La bohème and Junius The Rape of Lucretia all for English National Opera.


    Leigh Melrose has given many world premieres including Cholawicki in Johannes Kalitzke’s Die Besessenen at Theater an der Wien, Elliot Carter’s On Conversing with Paradise at the Aldeburgh Festival under Oliver Knussen, the UK premiere of Luca Francesconi's Quartett at Royal Opera House, and Evan in James MacMillan’s new opera The Sacrifice at Welsh National Opera, all to critical acclaim. On Conversing with Paradise was recorded and released on the Bridge label, and subsequently nominated for a Gramophone Award for ‘Best Contemporary Album’.


    Other performances of contemporary repertoire include his debut at the prestigious Maggio Musicale festival in Florence singing Rihm’s Der maler träumt; title role of Birtwistle's Gawain with BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra; Matthias Pintscher’s Solomon’s Garden with the Ensemble Intercontemporain in Paris conducted by the composer; Rambo in the Channel 4 television film of John Adams’ The Death of Klinghoffer; Michael Collins in Jonathan Dove’s TV Opera Man on the Moon for Channel 4; Punch in Birtwistle Punch and Judy in Porto; Xenakis’ Ais with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the BBC Proms and Berlin Festival; Peter Maxwell Davies’ The Martyrdom of St Magnus at the composer’s St Magnus Festival, Orkney, in Edinburgh and Inverness; Maxwell-Davies’ Eight Songs for a Mad King with the Orquesta de Cadaqués in Madrid, the London Sinfonietta at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, BIT20 in Bergen and Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra ; Michael Finnissy’s Maldon with the London Sinfonietta at the Queen Elizabeth Hall and the world premiere of Martin Suckling’s Candlebird also with the London Sinfonietta under Nicholas Collon.


    Melrose has also performed Walton Belshazzar’s Feast, Berlioz Symphony No.3 with the BBC Symphony Orchestra; Britten Canticles at the Liceu Barcelona and with Roger Vignoles at the Queen Elizabeth Hall and the Wigmore Hall in London; Noah's Fludde with BBC Scottish Symphony; Requiem fuer einen jungen Dichter with HR Sinfonie at Frankfurt Alte Oper; Carmina Burana at the Royal Festival Hall, Birmingham Symphony Hall, Usher Hall and with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland; Beethoven Symphony No.9 under Sir Neville Marriner with the Orquesta de Cadaqués, and concerts with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Vassily Petrenko, the Hebrides Ensemble, the Philharmonia Orchestra and Esa-Pekka Salonen in London and Paris, the London Symphony Orchestra under Sir Colin Davis, the Northern Sinfonia and Thierry Fischer, and the City of London Sinfonia with Richard Hickox. At the BBC Proms he has performed Britten Cantata Misericodium with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, De Falla’s La Vida Breve and Sir Richard Cholmondeley in Gilbert & Sullivan’s Yeomen of the Guard.


    Last season he premiered Dai Fujikura’s Solaris, a co-production between Theatre de Champs Elysees, Opéra de Lille and Opéra de Lausanne and made his Teatro Real debut as the Traveller in a new Willy Decker production of Death in Venice. At English National Opera he was heard as Sonora and Escamillo. On the concert platform he made his debut at Lucerne Festival with Songs from Solomon’s Garden under the musical direction of Matthias Pintscher and Zimmermann’s Requiem für einen jungen dichter conducted by Michel Tabachnik at the Philharmonie de Paris.


    In 15/16 he sings his first Alberich Das Rheingold at the Ruhrtriennale Festival under the musical direction of Teodor Currentzis and makes his house debut with Zurich Opera Wozzeck under Fabio Luisi, both in Zurich and in London at the Royal Festival Hall. Further notable debuts are Et in Terra et Pax with Stichting Omroep Muziek, the world premiere of Louis Andriessen’s Theatre of the World with the LA Philharmonic, which is also presented in a staged production at the Dutch National Opera and Stolzius Die Soldaten at Teatro Colon.

    2015-2016 season / 823 words. Not to be altered without permission

Performances

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Season highlights

Alberich Das Rheingold
Ruhr Triennale 


Title Role Wozzeck
Opernhaus Zurich 


Theatre of the World by Louis Andriessen (world premiere)
Dutch National Opera & LA Philharmonic


Stolzius Die Soldaten 
Teatro Colon

Concert highlights

Escamillo Carmen
City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra / Sakari Oramo


Pintscher Solomon’s Garden
Ensemble Intercontemporain


Sir Peter Maxwell Davies The Martyrdom of St Magnus
St Magnus Festival, Orkney; Edinburgh; Inverness


Sir Peter Maxwell Davies Eight Songs for a Mad King
Orquesta de Cadaqués, Madrid; London Sinfonietta / Queen Elizabeth Hall


Michael Finnissy Maldon
London Sinfonietta / Queen Elizabeth Hall


Martin Suckling Candlebird
London Sinfonietta / Nicholas Collon (world premiere)


Belshazzar’s Feast, Berlioz Symphony No.3
BBC Symphony Orchestra


Britten Canticles
Gran Teatre del Liceu; with Roger Vignoles / Southbank Centre / Wigmore Hall


Orff Carmina Burana
Royal Festival Hall; Birmingham Symphony Hall; RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra / Usher Hall


Beethoven Symphony No.9
Orquesta de Cadaqués / Sir Neville Marriner


Britten Cantata Misericodium
BBC Symphony Orchestra / BBC Proms

Opera highlights

Title role Wozzeck
Salzburg; English National Opera (new productions)


Papageno Die Zauberflöte
Seattle Opera; Opera Zuid


Demetrius A Midsummer Night’s Dream
La Monnaie


Escamillo Carmen
Royal Albert Hall


Figaro Il Barbiere di Siviglia
New York City Opera


Silvio I Pagliacci
Welsh National Opera


Various Death in Venice
Gran Teatre del Liceu


Marcello La bohème
Opera Zuid


Sid Albert Herring
Salzburger Landestheater; Opéra Comique; Opéra de Rouen


Ned Keene Peter Grimes
Vlaamse Opera; Opera Oviedo; English National Opera; BBC Proms


Title role Eugene Onegin
Longborough Festival Opera


Tadeusz The Passenger; Papageno; Escamillo; Bormenthal A Dog’s Heart; Count Marriage of Figaro; Rodolfo in Leoncavallo’s La bohème; Junius The Rape of Lucretia
English National Opera

Concert repertoire

Adams
The Wound Dresser


Bach
Passions


Berlioz
Symphony No.3 ‘Romeo et Juliette’


Brahms
Requiem


Britten
War Requiem
Canticles


Carter
On Conversing with Paradise


Copland
American Songs I & II with orchestra


Duruflé
Requiem


Fauré
Requiem


Glanert/Brahms
Four Serious Songs


Handel
Messiah
Alexander’s Feast


Haydn
Masses and The Seasons


Mahler
Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen
Rückert Lieder
Kindertotenlieder


Maxwell-Davies
Eight Songs for a Mad King


Mendelssohn
Elijah


Mozart
Requiem and Masses


Mussorgsky
Songs and Dances of Death


Orff
Carmina Burana


Primosch, James
Songs for Adam


Schoeck, Othmar
Lebendig Begraben, Op.40


Vaughan Williams
Sea Symphony
Songs of Travel
Five Mystical Songs


Xenakis
Ais
La Déesse Athéna

Opera repertoire

Adams
Rambo The Death of Klinghoffer
Jack Hubbard Dr Atomic


Berg
Title role Wozzeck


Berlioz
Mercury, Greek Captain & Chorèbe Les Troyens
Mercutio & Paris Romeo et Juliette


Birtwistle
Punch Punch & Judy


Bizet
Escamillo Carmen
Morales Carmen
Zuniga Pearl Fishers


Britten
Ned Keane Peter Grimes
Title role Billy Budd
Sid Albert Herring
English Clerk Death in Venice
The Traveller Death in Venice
Demetrius A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Junius & Tarquinius Rape of Lucretia


Debussy
Title role Pelleas et Melisande*


Donizetti
Belcore L’elisir d’amore
Malatesta Don Pasquale


Dove
Mike Collins Man on the Moon
Steward Flight


Gounod
Valentin Faust


Korngold
Fritz Die tote Stadt


Leoncavallo
Rodolfo La Boheme
Silvio Pagliacci


Macmillan
Evan The Sacrifice
Parthonogenesis


Maxwell Davies
The Tempter The Martyrdom of St Magnus
Eight Songs for a Mad King


Mozart
Papageno Die Zauberflote
Count Le Nozze di Figaro
Figaro Le Nozze di Figaro
Guglielmo Cosi fan tutte
Title role Don Giovanni*


Puccini
Marcello La Boheme
Schaunard La Boheme
Frank Edgar


Rossini
Figaro Il Barbiere di Siviglia


Tchaikovsky
Title role Eugene Onegin
Yletski Queen of Spades


*in preparation

Musically, it's astonishing. Melrose, giving the performance of a lifetime, charts Wozzeck's disintegration with unflinching veracity and an extraordinary expressive range that veers from lyrical intensity to snarl or eerie falsetto.

Guardian, May 2013

The baritone Leigh Melrose [was] superb at the head of an internationally distinguished cast.

Sunday Times, May 2013

Intermusica represents Leigh Melrose worldwide

Maria Mot
Senior Artist Manager
+44 20 7608 9904
mmot@intermusica.co.uk

Evangeline Parker
Administrator, Vocal & Opera
+44 20 7608 9937
eparker@intermusica.co.uk

If you have any queries, please fill in the form below, and we will be in touch soon

All artists

Chansonnier

HK Gruber

Special projects

Charles Hazlewood

Counter-tenor

Tim Mead

Stage director

David Alden

Andreas Homoki

Piano accompanist

Roger Vignoles