Vanessa Woodward

Vanessa Woodward
Co-Founder / Artistic Director / Trustee

Vanessa originally studied music at Colchester Institute and later gained an advanced postgraduate diploma (voice) from Trinity College of Music, where she was awarded the Wilfred Greenhouse prize for Oratorio and Cantata. Vanessa studies singing with Quentin Hayes. Her early professional career was as a singer/guitarist in rock and folk bands, before resuming her classical singing career. She is experienced as an oratorio soloist and also enjoys Lieder and 20th century British Song. With Opera Anywhere, Vanessa has performed in some unusual situations, including performing ‘soap opera scenes’ on ITV’s ‘This Morning’! Operatic roles include Nireno / Giulio Cesare (Handel Opera Company), Princess / Suor Angelica, Popova / The Bear by Walton (‘In Tune’, BBC Radio 3), Baba / The Medium, Miss Baggot / The Little Sweep, Miss Todd / The Old Maid and the Thief and 3rd lady/3rd boy / The Magic Flute.

Mike Woodward

Mike Woodward
Co-Founder / General Manager / Trustee

Mike is General Manager of Opera Anywhere, in addition to providing tour and production management services to other companies, including Barefoot Opera. He studies singing with Quentin Hayes. In addition to Mike’s organisational responsibilities, he loves performing in song concerts, oratorios and operas. Mike’s operatic roles include Kaspar / Amahl and the Night Visitors, Rinuccio / Gianni Schicchi, Camille / The Merry Widow and the Gilbert & Sullivan ‘patter’ roles (with Opera Anywhere.) Mike regularly performs popular tenor repertoire in various corporate and private performances, and particularly enjoys ‘Singing Waiters’ events. Mike created ‘Arias On Ice’ and performed ‘Nessun Dorma’ on live TV on ice skates alongside English tenor Alfie Boe as part of a Channel 4 documentary about Opera Anywhere. Mike has also appeared on ITV’s ‘This Morning’, performing soap opera scenes in an operatic style!

John Alcock

John Alcock
Technical Director / Lighting Designer / Trustee

John’s interest in stage lighting developed alongside his career working for a multi-national technology company. He has worked with Opera Anywhere as lighting designer and technician since the company started, and particularly relishes the challenges presented by the ‘Anywhere’ aspect of our performances. John became a trustee and company director of Opera Anywhere in 2012, taking responsibility for our health and safety in 2017. John is a holder of a Production Safety Passport. While Opera Anywhere always has first call on his time, he occasionally works with contemporary groups As If and The Back Four and in 2016 lit the stage for the Emfest festival, headlined by Scouting for Girls. He has also provided lighting for Ormond Opera’s production of Carmen, An Audience with Jonathan Veira and Three Chairs and a Hat productions Melody and Verity, including at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2019.

Jen Clark

Jennifer Clark
Development and Special Projects Manager

Soprano Jennifer is a graduate of Cambridge University and RWCMD’s MA Opera Performance course, where she was a Leverhulme Scholar. As a principal or cover artist she has appeared with Opera North (Flora / The Turn of the Screw and Gretel / Hansel and Gretel: Whistlestop Opera), WNO (First Boy / The Magic Flute), Bury Court Opera, The Grange Festival (cover Emmie / Albert Herring and cover Blonde / Seraglio) and Opera Anywhere (Mabel / Pirates, Josephine / H.M.S. Pinafore, Patience / Patience and Sister Genevieve / Sister Angelica.) For Opera Anywhere, she is responsible for fundraising, project management and company development. www.jenniferclarksoprano.com.

Nia Williams

Nia Williams
Musical Director / Pianist

Nia is a freelance musician and writer. Her work as a pianist/MD encompasses opera, lieder, ballet and musical theatre. She leads storytelling/musical projects, and as Associate Artist for English National Ballet and co-founder of MuMo Creative, runs live and online workshops. Nia’s theatre company Three Chairs and a Hat stages her original musicals, which have appeared at the Edinburgh Fringe. She’s the author of several novels and her stories have been broadcast on BBC radio. As Opera Anywhere’s MD/pianist, Nia enjoys bringing opera to a wider audience, in all venues and weathers! www.niawilliams.com or www.facebook/threechairsandahat.

Nick Planas

Nick Planas
Flute / Clarinet / Sound Effects / Arrangements

Nick is a composer, conductor, performer and teacher of woodwind. His initial musical training was on the flute under Geoffrey Hall and, after leaving school, with Christopher Taylor, Principal Flautist of the Festival Ballet Orchestra. Nick has composed many orchestral works as well as large and small-scale operas, musicals, and chamber works, and has had several smaller pieces published. He has also written three detective novels, with a fourth planned for mid-2021. Nick has been a member of the Opera Anywhere touring orchestra since 2012, thoroughly enjoying the variety of instruments and sound effects required for each performance. www.nickplanas.com.

Katie Blackwell

Katie Blackwell
Stage Manager and Production Director: Puccini’s Heroines

Katie trained at Trinity Laban, having graduated from Cardiff University with a degree in Music and History. She now works in theatre and production as a singer, stage manager, and director. Recent performance/production credits include: Opera in a Box, Oxford Opera, Grimeborn Opera Festival, Heritage Opera, Tessitoura, Barefoot Opera. Katie is the former education administrator for Creation Theatre, and currently the Director of Education and Outreach for Oxford Opera. Katie has worked with Opera Anywhere for over a decade, and working on Hansel and Gretel (Assistant Director), Suor Angelica (Director), Patience, Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado, and HMS Pinafore. She is a co-founder of Sorelle – an all-female trio aiming to change the perception of women in opera: www.sorellesingers.com

David Jones

David Jones
Production Director: Amahl and the Night Visitors

David Jones is a London-based baritone. He was a prize-winner in the 2015 AESS Patricia Routledge English Song Competition and in 2018 he devised, produced and performed Song Cycle, a 1000-mile, 18-concert exploration of Vaughan Williams’s Songs of Travel. Highlights have included performances with Forbear Theatre, Lyric Opera Studio Weimar and the King’s Head Theatre. With Opera Anywhere he has played roles in The Magic Flute, Amahl and the Night Visitors and four G&S operas. In 2020 he developed Opera Anywhere’s digital storybook for Amahl, having directed the 2019 production. www.davidjonesbaritone.com

Tristan Stocks

Tristan Stocks
Production Director: The Magic Flute, Associate Director: The Mikado

Tenor Tristan Stocks trained at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama and at Dennis O’Neill’s prestigious studio, the International Academy of Voice. Previous awards include a Susan Chilcott Scholarship, the Grange Park Opera Scholarship and a prize at the John Lill Awards. In 2010 Tristan made his role debut as well as understudying for Glyndebourne Festival Opera. He was a Britten-Pears Young Artist at Aldeburgh, in Les Mamelles de Tirésias. Recent roles have included: Tonio / La fille du regiment, Alfredo / La Traviata, Ernesto / Don Pasquale, Tamino / The Magic Flute, Rinuccio / Gianni Schicchi, Nemorino / L’elisir d’amore and Orpheus / Orpheus in the Underworld. www.tristanstocks.com.

Serenna Wagner

Serenna Wagner
Production Director: Hansel and Gretel

Serenna Wagner studied at The RNCM and the Opera Works course at English National Opera where she joined the chorus for several productions. Since then, she has sung many solo roles, given recitals and oratorio solos; directed several productions and led opera workshops. In addition to her work at Opera Anywhere, Serenna has appeared with Heritage Opera, Longborough Festival Opera, Bampton Opera, Focus Opera, Opera by Definition, Flat Pack Music and Oxford Opera. Highlights include creating roles in two world premières: Fanny Price in Jonathan Dove’s Mansfield Park and Paulina in Alan Edward Williams’ The Arsonists with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra ensemble, both for Heritage Opera.

Trustees

John Alcock
Richard Edwards
Jenny Gordon
John Logan
Nick Planas

Mike Woodward

Vanessa Woodward
Barbara Wynn

Singers

SopranosMezzosTenorsBaritones / Basses
Nikki Bagshaw
Olivia Bell
Katie Blackwell
Jennifer Clark
Nadia Eide
Catrin Lewis
Ellie Neate
Phoebe Rose
Megan Strachan
Amy Webber
Helen Winter
Rachel Falaise
Hebe Hamilton
Freya Jacklin
Emily Kyte
Serenna Wagner
Vanessa Woodward
Dale Harris
Tristan Stocks
Mike Woodward
Mark Horner
Miles Horner
David Jones
Sam Young

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