Baritone Morgan Pearse will soon be moving from London, his home of recent years, to Houston, Texas, where he has been offered a position with the Studio Programme of the Houston Grand Opera.
The prestigious HGO Opera Studio offers an integrated programme involving study in voice, drama and affiliated areas, opportunities to perform and a stipend. Morgan says “The programme itself is amazing, giving you a home in one of the world’s best opera houses, weekly voice lessons with renowned teacher Steven King, lovely coaching and administrative staff, but more than any other studio programme I’ve seen, HGO puts you on stage in important roles, working alongside, in alternative castings. the huge international class acts they attract…. …I have opportunities to sing Guglielmo (Cosi fan tutte) Papageno (Magic Flute), Yamadori (Madam Butterfly) and Anthony (Sweeny Todd) all just in 9 months from August to May.”
After his undergraduate training at he Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Morgan traveled to London where he completed a Master’s degree at the Royal College of Music as the inaugural Dame Joan Sutherland scholar. He won the gold medal in the Royal Over-Seas League music competition and the Wigmore Hall final of the Young Classical Artists Trust. He has performed at King’s College Cambridge, the Sydney Opera House, the City Recital Hall in Sydney, the Henry Purcell Room, Cadogan Hall and Australia House.
Last year, Morgan returned to Sydney to sing the role of Owen Wingrave for Sydney Chamber Opera, and as bass soloist in Messiah for Sydney Philharmonia Choirs. Back in London he is preparing for the role of Pompeo in Belioz’s Benvenuto Cellini for the English National Opera, conducted by Edward Gardner and directed by Terry Gilliam.
HGO’s Opera Studio was co-founded in 1977 by composer Carlisle Floyd to provide “comprehensive career development to young artists who have demonstrated potential to make major contributions to the field of opera. The Studio’s goal is to develop well-rounded professionals by providing the highest quality training combined with a wide range of performance opportunities.”
Alumni of the HGO Studio Programme include Joyce Di Donato, Scott Hendricks and Ryan McKinney. It was where Renee Fleming has her first break as the Countess in The Marriage of Figaro.
Houston Grand Opera was founded in 1955 and is regarded as one of the major companies in the world. It has hosted the world premieres of the operas Nixon in China, Harvey Milk and The Little Prince amongst others. Patrick Summers is the Artistic and Music Director of HGO, a post he has held since 1998.
Read our interview with Morgan Pearse prior to his departure for London in 2011.
Shamistha de Soysa for SoundsLikeSydney©