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Persha Darling (soprano) performs songs by Britten, Copland and Jonathan Dove

Friday March 1, 2019 at 13:10
St James's Church, Piccadilly, London
Free admission – no ticket required

  1. Bird songs - Liza Lehmann
  2. Five am'rous sighs - Jonathan Dove
  3. Separation, from Four Night Songs - Madeleine Dring
  4. Folksong arrangements - Benjamin Britten
  5. Excerpts, from 12 Poems of Emily Dickinson - Aaron Copland

Guernsey-born soprano Persha Darling is a postgraduate student at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. She currently studies with Joan Rodgers, Eamonn Mulhall and Kelvin Lim. Persha is particularly passionate about performing new, little-known or little-performed works. She has collaborated with composers also studying at Trinity Laban Conservatoire, which led to her recording of Amy Clarkson’s Altaneigh being aired on BBC Radio 3. Persha has also taken centre stage in opera with Leeds Youth Opera as: Eurydice in Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld, Giselda in Verdi’s I Lombardi and Agnes Lee in the European premier of Glass’ Appomattox; gaining her nominations for the Leeds Art Guild’s Best Performance Award. Persha’s most recent engagements include The Debussy Festival at the Old Royal Naval College Chapel and as Cinderella for Puzzlepiece Opera’s production of Cinderella. She is set to perform the role of Louise, in Gustave Charpentier's opera of the same name, for Trinity Laban Opera next year.

Claire Habbershaw has extensive experience as both a pianist and a singer. In 2012 she was awarded scholarship lessons with concert pianist Richard Meyrick, and shortly after received a place at Trinity Laban Conservatoire. Claire is currently under the tutelage of Eugene Asti, on a Postgraduate Independent Year of Study as a Trinity London Scholar, and was awarded the 2018 Founders’ Prize for Piano Accompaniment.

Claire has performed and sung at various venues including Drapers' Hall, Painters' Hall, Wax Chandlers' Hall, Mansion House and The Royal College of Surgeons for the Worshipful Company of Coopers', St John’s Smith Square, Old Royal Naval College, Blackheath Halls, Farnham Maltings, St Alfege and Regents Hall. Claire has also performed for HRH Prince Edward with National Youth Music Theatre at the Rose Theatre, Kingston. Recent concerts have included performing with the Royal Tunbridge Orpheus Male Voice Choir, performing for the re-opening of Trinity Laban's Sir Charles Mackerras Room with soprano Arianna Firth, and participating in The London Song Festival Lieder Masterclass, along with rush hour concerts at Holy Trinity Sloane Square with mezzo-soprano Bethany Horak-Hallett.

Within Trinity Laban, Claire has reached the final of The Leonard Smith and Felicity Young String and Piano Duo Competition 2017 with violinist Olivia Holland, and has been highly commended in The Elisabeth Schumann Lieder Competition 2018 with soprano Charlotte Levesley. Claire won The English Song Competition 2018 with mezzo-soprano Charlotte Diamond and The Lillian Ash French Song Competition 2018 with soprano Hope Lavelle. Claire was nominated to represent Trinity Laban at the Gerald Moore Award for pianists specialising in song accompaniment.

Recent projects have included performing at the Debussy and Beyond Festival 2018 at Trinity Laban with tenor, Sam Jewison, and for Venus Blazing, a celebration of female composers, which included a recording with Hope Lavelle, featured on Trinity Laban’s website, of Libby Larsen’s Anne Boleyn, from Try Me, Good King. Upcoming projects include a number of performances within the Brahms and his Female Contemporaries Festival.

Claire is an enthusiastic harpsichordist and has won Trinity Laban’s prestigious Raymond Russell prize for Harpsichord and the British Clavichord Society scholarship for lessons and loan of a clavichord, as well as already playing for many of Trinity’s own ensembles such as their premier String Ensemble, conducted by Nicolas Pendlebury and Baroque Ensemble, conducted by Walter Reiter. Claire also has a strong interest in Musical Theatre and regularly works as accompanist at The Drama Centre and Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. She is a member of National Youth Theatre, an actor musician alumni of National Youth Music Theatre and trained at Junior Guildhall drama under opera librettist, Alisdair Middleton.

Free recital (retiring collection)

St James's Church, Piccadilly
197 Piccadilly
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