Canterbury Music Club

Sunday 21 October 2018 · 3.00pm
St Gregory's Centre for Music

Schubert · various songs
Schumann · Liederkreis, Op. 39
Mahler · various songs
Wolf · Harfenspieler Lieder

Julien van Mellaerts · baritone
Simon Lepper · piano

Jane Lindsay
Julien van Mellaerts - baritone

New Zealand baritone, Julien Van Mellaerts, has recently graduated from the Royal College of Music International Opera School, where he was a Fishmongers’ Company Scholar supported by a Toeman Weinberger Award. On graduation, he was awarded the Tagore Gold Medal. He continues to study with Russell Smythe. Before moving to London, Julien studied music and languages at the University of Otago. 

Julien has won first prize at the 2017 Wigmore Hall/Kohn Foundation International Song Competition. This follows on from his first prize in the 2017 Kathleen Ferrier Awards. Other awards include: the Kiwi Music Scholarship and a Countess of Munster Award for 2016/2017, he has also won the 2016 Joan Chissell Schumann Song Prize, the 2016 Brooks-Van Der Pump English Song Competition, and winner of the 2015 Maureen Lehane Vocal Awards at the Wigmore Hall. With pianist Joao Araújo, Julien has been invited to compete in the Concours Musical International de Montréal, Art song competition in Canada May/June 2018. Julien has recently been awarded a Bayreuth Festival Bursary 2018 and will be visiting the Bayreuth Festival to work with leading singers and conductors there for a week in August, culminating in a public concert as part of the festival.

Fresh out of full time study, here are some season highlights for the year ahead: Debut with the Royal Ballet in their production of Elizabeth, with performances at the Barbican and on tour (TBC); Schaunard in La Bohème with New Zealand Opera; the title role in Eugene Onegin with the Cambridge Philharmonic; Fezziwig in the premiere of Will Todd's 'A Christmas Carol' with Opera Holland Park; the Referee in Mozart vs the Machine for Mahogany Opera Group; recitals with Julius Drake in Madrid; performances at Wigmore and Cadogan Hall; Scholar of the Heidelberg Lied Akademie with Thomas Hamspon and Graham Johnson, as part of the Heidelberger Frühling Festival (masterclasses and performances available live on Medici TV); Scholar of the Solti Accademia this summer in Castiglione della Pescaia; concerts with East Anglia Chamber and City of Cambridge Symphony Orchestras; and recitals at the London Song, Leeds Lieder, Oxford Lieder Festivals, and Barcelona LIFE Lieder festival. 

Recent operatic roles include: Second soldier and second Nazarene in Salome at the Verbier Festival with Charles Dutoit; Dandini in La Cenerentola with Diva Opera; Schaunard in La Bohème as a Christine Collins Young Artist at Opera Holland Park; Danilo in Lehar’s The Merry Widow for Ryedale Festival; Le mari/le directeur in Poulenc’s Les Mamelles de Tirésias, Mr Gedge in Albert Herring, and Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus at the RCMIOS.

A keen recitalist, and an enthusiastic song singer, Julien performs regularly at the Wigmore Hall in London, and has appeared in recital at the Oxford Lieder Festival, London Song Festival, Ryedale Festival, St Martin’s-in-the-Fields, St James Piccadilly, Cadogan Hall, the premiere of a song cycle by Lewis Murphy at New Zealand House, and Schubert's Die Winterreise with Roger Vignoles. Upcoming recitals around the UK, in Spain, Canada and in New Zealand include collaborations with Simon Lepper, Julius Drake, James Baillieu, Gamal Khamis and Joao Araújo. Concert highlights include: Messiah with Orchestra of St Johns; Fauré Requiem and Paul Carr's Requiem for an Angel with the Bournemouth Symphony Chorus and Chamber Orchestra; Mozart Coronation Mass, Haydn St Nicolas Mass, and  Gilbert and Sullivan excerpts with the Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra; St John Passion with Orchestra of St Johns; Baritone soloist for Carmina Burana at Snape Maltings as part of the Aldeburgh Festival; St Matthew Passion with Sheffield Choral Society and Southwark Cathedral.

He is incredibly grateful for the continued support of the Kiri Te Kanawa Foundation, Hunn Trust, John Wates, Josephine Baker Trust, Concordia Foundation and the Peace and Prosperity Trust

Jane Lindsay
Simon Lepper- piano

Simon Lepper read music at King’s College Cambridge. He is a professor of piano accompaniment at the Royal College of Music, London where he also co-ordinates the piano accompaniment course. He is an official accompanist for BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition.

Recent performance highlights included an invitation from the Wigmore Hall, London to present a three concert project on the songs of Joseph Marx; a recital tour with baritone Stéphane Degout which included the Ravinia and Edinburgh Festivals; his debut at Carnegie Hall, New York with mezzo Karen Cargill; a performance with Mark Padmore of Schubert Winterreise at the Schubertiade, Hohenhems, Austria; recitals with Angelika Kirchschlager at La Monnaie, Brussels and at the Wigmore Hall where appearances also have included recitals with Christopher Maltman, Elizabeth Watts, Stephan Loges, Sophie Bevan, Christopher Purves and Lawrence Zazzo,  Future highlights included performances and recordings with BBC New Generation Artists Kitty Whately, Benjamin Appl and Ilker Arcayurek and recitals with Sally Matthews at La Monnaie and Christopher Purves at the Frick Collection, New York.

Simon has also appeared at the Wigmore Hall with violinist Carolin Widmann, with whom he has given recitals in Amsterdam, Paris, Salzburg, Cologne and Madrid and recorded for ECM - Phantasy of Spring, contemporary works, including Feldman, Zimmerman and Xenakis – which received a Diapason d’Or and the German Critics Award. More recently he recorded a disc of Brahms, Schubert and Beethoven with violinist Ji-Hae Park (Universal records).

Vocal recordings include Warlock songs with Andrew Kennedy (Landor),

2 volumes of Debussy songs and Strauss songs with Gillian Keith (Deux-Elles), the complete CW Orr songs with Mark Stone (Stone Records) and a disc of Gustav and Alma Mahler songs with Karen Cargill (Linn records). Future releases include a song recital disc with Dame Felicity Palmer (Resonus Classics), Jonathan Dove Songs with Kitty Whately (Champs Hill) and the debut disc of Ilker Arcayurek in a programme of Schubert songs (Champs Hill).