Alison Kettlewell – Mezzo Soprano
Alison Kettlewell was born in Taunton, Somerset and graduated in drama before studying singing at the Royal Northern and on the Opera Course at the Royal College of Music. She was a winner of the AsLiCo Competition for Young Opera Singers of Europe and a finalist in the Kathleen Ferrier Awards.
In the current season Alison returns to the Royal Opera House to understudy Ježibaba in Natalie Abrahami’s new production of Rusalka. She makes her Royal Opera debut in the 2024/25 season. Performance highlights include Madame Larina Eugene Onegin for Scottish Opera; Little Buttercup HMS Pinafore for English National Opera; Venus in Tannhäuser and Fricka and Waltraute in Der Ring des Nibelungen for Longborough Festival Opera, where her performances were reviewed as “magnificent” and “outstanding”; and Siegrune Die Walküre in concert with the Hallé Orchestra under Sir Mark Elder (BBC Radio 3 broadcast and CD release).
On the concert platform repertoire includes the Bach Passions through to Elgar The Dream of Gerontius and Verdi Requiem. She sang Mary in Berlioz’s L’enfance du Christ with the Northern Sinfonia and has performed with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the English Chamber Orchestra, London Mozart Players, and the Orchestra of St John’s at venues including the Barbican, Royal Albert Hall, Symphony Hall, Birmingham and live on BBC Radio 3’s In Tune.
Philip Lancaster – Baritone
Philip Lancaster is a singer, composer, a writer, and a textual and critical scholar of 20th-century British music and poetry. Philip has performed in recital and oratorio at venues and festivals across the country, including the Three Choirs, English Music and Two Moors Festivals. He is the leading authority on the works of composer-poet Ivor Gurney, whose music he has edited and orchestrated for performance, broadcast, recording and publication. As a composer, his work draws deeply on his interest in poetry, in songs, choral and instrumental works. A major chamber oratorio, War Passion, was premièred at the Three Choirs Festival in 2016, while more recent performances include the première of a song cycle with violin, Fallen, in October 2021, and the performance by the choir of Selwyn College, Cambridge of a choral work, Carol of the Passion, at St. Bride’s, Fleet St., in March 2022.
Vicki Field – Soprano
Vicki Field is a soprano with a reputation in the Gloucestershire area and beyond, for possessing a clear and attractive tone. As a soloist she specialises in the baroque repertoire, and she is also in demand as a consort and choral singer. She lives in Gloucester, where she is well-known as a singer, singing teacher and choral animateur.
Vicki directs the Ecclesiastical Insurance Staff Choir, who have performed in Gloucester Cathedral and other local venues. For twelve years Vicki co-directed Gloucester Cathedral Junior Choir, and the cathedral’s outreach programme. She teaches singing in several local schools, co-runs several choirs with her husband Sebastian, and is active in education and singing with local schools and companies. As a consort singer Vicki is a founder member of The Proteus Ensemble, and has worked with ensembles such as the John S Davies Singers, Aldwyn Voices and new professional ensemble Gaudeamus.
Sebastian Field – Counter Tenor
Sebastian Field began his musical career as a chorister at Hereford Cathedral. He is a counter tenor, active across the West Country and beyond as a soloist and consort singer. He lives and works in Gloucester where he teaches singing in several local schools and sings in the Cathedral Choir. Sebastian is also active in local politics as a Gloucester City councilor.
With his wife Vicki, Sebastian is heavily involved in the local civic and musical life in Gloucester, organising the annual GLOW Festival, a local music event, as well as corunning
several choirs, the professional consort Gaudeamus, the Gloucester Recitals series, and the arts promotion company Creative Field. As a consort singer he sings regularly with the John S Davies Singers, is a founder member of the Proteus Ensemble, and has sung with Armonico Consort.
Leslie Baker trained as a choral scholar at Cambridge where he gained a degree in Music. He taught music at Felsted School in Essex for thirteen years and then spent a further six years as Director of Music at Colyton Grammar School in Devon. Since 1992 he has worked as a freelance woodwind and singing teacher in East Devon. As an opera singer he has performed with companies in Essex and Devon taking leading tenor roles in works by Handel, Mozart, Donizetti, Rossini, Bizet, Lehar, Britten, Sullivan and others. He has an extensive oratorio repertoire and has performed with many choirs and choral societies in the South West. He also gives concerts and recitals both singing and playing the clarinet, has conducted several local choral and dramatic societies and is now retired after twelve years as Musical Director of Seaton Choral Society
Alex Poulton- Baritone
Alex has performed in recital in major festivals throughout Europe and in many of the worlds leading concert venues from ‘The Wigmore Hall’, London to ‘The De Doelen’, Rotterdam. His core repertoire includes all three of Schubert’s song cycles. He also sings art song for BBC television and has appeared on ITV.
At Birmingham Conservatoire Alex won the Reginald Vincent Lieder Prize and was awarded a scholarship from the Joseph Weingarten Memorial Trust, to study lieder at the Franz Liszt Academy, Budapest.
Recently he performed an English Song Recital with some rare works by Arthur Bliss for Arts in Residence and a recital of art songs from the Great War. Alex has been working in collaboration with BBC producer Keith Cheetham and Robin Bowman on dramatized performances of Die Schöne Müllerin and Winterreise. He is shortly to record a new album, this time of Ivor Gurney songs.
Alex has sung most of the major baritone Oratorio repertoire such as Carmina Burana, A Sea Symphony, Elijah and Finzi’s: Et in Terra Pax. Recent performances include solos in Faure Requiem, Elgar’s, Great is the Lord, Finzi’s Lo The Full Final Sacrifice & Let Us Garlands Bring with Portsmouth Choral Union and St. Matthew Passion with Exeter Chamber Choir and Orchestra.
Héloïse West – Soprano
Héloïse West, soprano, was born in Devon. She received a gifted pupil award when she joined the National Youth Choir of Great Britain. She gained an Entrance Exhibition to the Royal Academy of Music, graduating with an LRAM and a Bachelor of Music degree in performance. She has also studied at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama. Héloïse currently studies with Robin Bowman, Jessica Cash, Lionel Friend and Peter Adcock. She has a very busy career in the South West singing Oratorio.
Her performances include: Bach – St Matthew Passion, St. John Passion, Mass in B Minor, Christmas Oratorio, Brahms – Requiem, Carter – Horizons, Dvorak – Stabat Mater, Elgar – Spirit of England, Handel – Messiah, Judas Maccabaeus, Chandos Anthems, Haydn – Nelson Mass, Creation, Maria Theresa Mass, Mendelssohn – Elijah, Mozart – Exultate Jubilate, C Minor Mass, Coronation Mass, Requiem, Poulenc – Gloria, Rossini – Stabat Mater, Petite Messe Solennelle, Vaughan Williams – A Sea Symphony, Verdi – Requiem.
Her operatic excerpts and roles have included Helena – A Midsummer Nights’ Dream, Cleopatra – Giulio Cesare, Monica – The Medium, Rusalka, First Lady – Magic Flute, The Governess – Turn of the Screw and the title role in Isabella and the Pot of Basil by Lawrence Roman, which premiered in London and at The Buxton Festival.
Master Classes: Emma Kirkby, Robert Tear, Paul Esswood, Paul Sperry, Paul Hamburger, Diane Forlano, Brian McKay, Robin Bowman, Richard Jackson, Jonathan Hinden, Eugene Asti, David Angus, Robert Dean, Jonathan Viera, Theresa Cahill, Michael Pilkington, James Lockheart, Ian Partridge
Louise Mott – Mezzo Soprano
Louise Mott studied at the Guildhall School of Music and the Royal College of Music (Opera Course), before completing her training at the National Opera Studio. She made her débuts at English National Opera as Bradamante Alcina, Welsh National Opera as Annio La Clemenza di Tito, at The Royal Opera House as Katarina Schratt Mayerling for The Royal Ballet and at Opera North as Annina Der Rosenkavalier, followed by Fidalma Il matrimonio segreto and 2nd Witch (& Dido cover) Dido and Aeneas. She sang Ariodante for English Touring Opera and Mme Larina Eugene Onegin for Scottish Opera on Tour, as well as several Handel title roles for Early Opera Company.
Recent engagements included Elgar’s The Kingdom, Bach’s St Matthew Passion and Messiah (Mozart edition) at Truro Cathedral, Bach’s B Minor Mass at Exeter Cathedral, Mrs Grose The Turn of the Screw for Seastar Opera, a recital for the 100th Anniversary of the original Glastonbury Festivals, Mrs Segstrom A Little Night Music for Opera Project and Ottavia (cover) The Coronation of Poppea for Opera North.
Engagements for 2015 include Marcellina Le nozze di Figaro and Alisa Lucia di Lammermoor for Diva Opera.
David Fouracre – Bass
David Fouracre was born in Taunton and after reading chemistry at university spent 20 years travelling throughout England and Scotland pursuing a career in retail management. He returned to his Westcountry roots in 1992 when he and his wife acquired a business of their own in Colyton, East Devon. He has been actively involved in choral music-making all his life, and has performed as a soloist with choirs from Dundee to Torquay. Since settling in Colyton he has been increasingly in demand as a bass-baritone soloist with choral societies throughout the West of England, and has been fortunate to perform a wide repertoire of choral music during that time. He has a particular personal affection for twentieth-century English song.