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Marta Fontanals-Simmons (mezzo) sings Copland, Britten, Barber, Crumb and Clarke

Wednesday April 24, 2019 at 13:10
St James's Church, Piccadilly, London
Free admission – no ticket required

  1. The little horses, from Old American Songs - Aaron Copland
  2. The Cherry-Blossom Wand - Rebecca Clarke
  3. The Wonderful Widow of 18 Springs - John Cage
  4. Nocturne, from 4 Songs Op 13 - Samuel Barber
  5. At day-close in November, from Winter Words Op 52 - Benjamin Britten
  6. A Charm of Lullabies Op 41 - Benjamin Britten
    • Highland balou
    • Sephestia's Lullaby
  7. Nightmare, from Who are these Children? Op 84 - Benjamin Britten
  8. Nocturne, from On this Island Op 11 - Benjamin Britten
  9. Lullaby - Andrew Norman

Marta Fontanals-Simmons is a British-Spanish mezzo-soprano whose highlights in the current season include her debut at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Hel in the world premiere of Gavin Higgins The Monstrous Child at the Linbury Theatre, Amando Le Grand Macabre with the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester and Alan Gilbert, and areturn to Glyndebourne Festival Opera for Zweite Dame Die Zauberflöte. Recent highlights include her debut at the Teatro Real, Madrid as Jennie Hildebrand in Weill Street Scene, Zweite Dame Die Zauberflöte for Garsington Opera, the European premiere of Alasdair Nicolson Shadows on the Wall – Five Hauntings for BBC Radio 3 at Barbican Hall, and Berlioz La Captive with the BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Pascal Rophé. In future seasons, Fontanals-Simmons will make her debut for Monte-Carlo Opera and return to the Teatro Real, Madrid.

Recent operatic highlights also include Cherubino Le nozze di Figaro for Garsington Opera and at the Théâtre Champs Elysées, Paris, her Glyndebourne debut as Lapák The Cunning Little Vixen , the title role La Cenerentola for Diva Opera and Kate Pinkerton Madama Butterfly for the Glyndebourne Tour and for Grange Park Opera. On the concert platform, recent highlights include Vaughan Williams Serenade to Music with Sakari Oramo at the Last Night of the Proms, Mendelssohn Elijah with CBSO at Birmingham Symphony Hall, Mahler Das Lied von der Erde at Oxford Lieder Festival, Vivaldi Gloria at the Royal Festival Hall with the Philharmonia Orchestra, L’Enfant et les Sortilèges with Stéphane Denève and the Radio-Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart, Mozart Requiem with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Bach Mass in B Minor with Ryan Wigglesworth at the St Endellion Festival, Mozart Mass in C Minor at St John's Smith Square, and Handel Messiah with Lawrence Cummings at the London Handel Festival, Stravinsky Les Noces at Queen Elizabeth Hall, Haydn Harmoniemesse with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and a concert at St John's, Smith Square celebrating the music of Michael Hurd.

?A keen exponent of contemporary music, Fontanals-Simmons most recently premiered the role of Ursula in the Royal Opera House and Glyndebourne coproduction of David Bruce Nothing, recorded two new songs cycles (Damsel, Wife, Witch by Glyndebourne composer in residence Lewis Murphy and Letters from Home by award-winning composer Benjamin Ellin), and performed Jonathan Harvey Songs of Li Po with Richard Baker at Barbican Hall which was broadcast live on BBC Radio 3. She is also a passionate recitalist and has performed at the Wigmore Hall, St Martinin-the-Fields, and St James's Piccadilly.

American-British pianist Lana Bode specialises in contemporary music and cross-arts performance. During her school years, she studied with prominent American contemporary pianist Lisa Emenheiser. She then trained at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music under the guidance of Edward Auer. At the age of 20, she graduated with a BMus (High Distinction) and was named an Indiana University Founders Scholar. She subsequently moved to the UK, where she completed a Master of Music with Distinction at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in 2014, studying piano accompaniment with Andrew West and contemporary piano with Rolf Hind. Her final recital earned the coveted Concert Recital Diploma.

Lana was the first winner of the Viola Tunnard Young Artist award, resulting in a year-long career development programme at Aldeburgh Music under the mentorship of Roger Vignoles. Other prizes include the Oxford Lieder Young Artist programme (finalist), YCAT (semi-finalist) and the Paul Hamburger Prize for Song Accompaniment. Lana is a Samling Artist, a Leverhulme Artist and an alumnus of the Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme. She has performed in song projects and masterclasses with Graham Johnson, Roger Vignoles, Malcolm Martineau, Iain Burnside, Julius Drake, Sarah Walker, Dame Ann Murray, Natalie Dessay, Felicity Lott, Sir Thomas Allen, Thomas Quasthoff, Roderick Williams and Martin Frost.

Lana is particularly interested in cross-arts collaboration, commissions of new music, and mental health outreach. She is well-versed in extended techniques for the piano. Her highly-acclaimed final postgraduate recital explored subconsciousness in a programme featuring music by George Crumb, Henry Cowell and Joseph Schwantner. Lana is the co-founder and Artistic Director of the concert series Virginia Woolf & Music, through which she has commissioned a number of new works and premiered music by Jeremy Thurlow and Jan-Willem van Herpen. She has also performed for composers John McCabe, Jonathan Dove, Brian Elias and Sadie Harrison.

Lana has performed widely in prestigious venues including Wigmore Hall, Barbican Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Sage Gateshead, Byre Theatre (StAnza Festival), Clothworker’s Centenary Concert Hall (Leeds), Holywell Music Room (Oxford Lieder Festival), Britten Studio (Snape Maltings) and Canterbury Cathedral. She was an accompaniment fellow at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance from 2014-16, and is now a staff accompanist at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama.

Free recital (retiring collection)

St James's Church, Piccadilly
197 Piccadilly
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