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Osmo Vänskä /// Music Director

Robin Blaze

countertenor

Robin Blaze

Established in the front rank of interpreters of Purcell, Bach and Handel, Robin Blaze's busy schedule has taken him to Europe, South America, North America, Japan and Australia. He read Music at Magdalen College, Oxford and won a post-graduate scholarship to the Royal College of Music where he trained with assistance from the Countess of Munster Trust and is now a Professor of Vocal Studies.

He has worked with most of the distinguished conductors in the early music field - Christophers, Cleobury, Gardiner, Herreweghe, Hogwood, Jacobs, King, Koopman, Kraemer, Leonhardt, McCreesh, McGegan, Mackerras, Pinnock and Suzuki. He has visited festivals in Ambronay, Beaune, Boston, Edinburgh, Halle, Iceland, Jerusalem, Innsbruck, Karlsruhe, Leipzig, Lucerne, Saintes and Utrecht. He regularly appears with The Academy of Ancient Music, Bach Collegium Japan, Collegium Vocale, The English Concert, The Gabrieli Consort, The King’s Consort, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, RIAS Kammerchor and The Sixteen. Other engagements have included the National Symphony Orchestra, Washington, the St Paul Chamber Orchestra, La Chapelle Royale, City of London Sinfonia, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, Royal Flanders Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, The Hallé Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Tafelmusik, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.

Robin’s opera engagements have included Athamas in Semele at The Royal Opera House; Didymus inTheodora for Glyndebourne Festival Opera; Arsamenes in Xerxes, Athamas in Semele, Hamor in Jephtha and Oberon in A Midsummer Night's Dream for English National Opera; Hamor in Jephtha for Welsh National Opera; Arcane in Handel’s Teseo at the Göttingen Handel Festival, and Bertarido inRodelinda for Glyndebourne Touring Opera and at the Göttingen Handel Festival.

Chamber music is an important part of his musical life and Robin regularly joins forces with Concordia, Fretwork, Florilegium and The Palladian Ensemble. He has given recitals in Tenerife, at the Théâtre Grévin in Paris, in Karlsruhe, Innsbruck, Göttingen, at the York Early Music, West Cork International Chamber Music, Sherbourne and Gloucester Three Choirs Festivals, for BBC Radio 3 and at The Wigmore Hall.

With a fast-growing number of acclaimed recordings to his name Robin continues to enjoy fruitful relationships with BIS and Hyperion records. For BIS he is adding to their Cantata Cycle with Bach Collegium Japan and joined Carolyn Sampson for a disc of Handel Oratorio Duets with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Nicholas Kraemer. His projects with Hyperion have included recital discs of lute songs with Elizabeth Kenny, Byrd Consort Songs and Salve Regina, a programme of Italian Cantatas with The Parley of Instruments. Amongst his other recordings are Didymus in Theodora with The Gabrieli Consort and McCreesh for DG Archiv, Vivaldi, Kuhnau and Knüpfer with The King's Consort, all for Hyperion, and Purcell’s Odes with Collegium Vocale Gent and Herreweghe for Harmonia Mundi. He also recorded Thomas Adès’ The Lover in Winter for EMI. His disc of solo Bach Cantatas with Masaaki Suzuki was released at the beginning of 2007 on the BIS label.

Robin’s recent engagements include Didymus in Theodora at the Göttingen Handel Festival, Medoro in Orlando with Welsh National Opera, Handel’s Messiah with the Orquesta Sinfonica de Galicia, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Handel and Haydn Society, a tour of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, performances of Bach Cantatas with the Nederlandse Bach Vereniging, Bach’s St Matthew Passion with the Bach Collegium Japan, and a recital at the Jacqueline du Pré Music Building.

Recent and future highlights include Umana fragilitá in Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria for The Grange Festival, performances of Purcell’s The Fairy Queen with the Handel and Haydn Society in Boston and at the Tanglewood Festival, Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with the Minnesota Orchestra and the Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra, Purcell Odes at the Berlioz Festival with The King’s Consort, Handel’s Messiah with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Bach Masses with the Dunedin Consort, performances of Bach Cantatas and Pergolesi’s Salve Regina with Florilegium at Wigmore Hall, a recital with world-renowned lutenist Elizabeth Kenny at Carnegie Hall, and Robin also continues his collaboration with the BCJ with concerts in Japan and in Europe. 

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