Maestra! Covent Garden boost for women conductors
The Royal Opera has chosen International Women’s Day today to announce two new women conductors' courses.
The courses, starting in May and July, are in collaboration with the Royal Philharmonic Society and the National Opera Studio and is a new element of the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme. The two week-long courses for opera and ballet follow a successful pilot programme last year.
Conductor Jessica Cottis (pictured), who won praise for conducting the world premiere of of Gavin Higgins’s opera The Monstrous Child at the opening of the new Linbury Theatre in January, will lead the week-long immersiveopera course. “It has been designed to give women working as conductors the opportunity to develop on a deep level the fluency of their technical and musical skills for conducting opera” she said. “The initial idea for these courses was pioneered by Alice Farnham (currently music director of Welsh National Opera) back in 2014, and I look forward to nurturing, encouraging and mentoring the next generation of talent and continuing to advocate for both access and balance within the classical music industry”.
The Royal Opera House employs female conductors across its repertoire. In 2018 Sian Edwards conducted The Royal Opera’s Coraline by Mark-Anthony Turnage at the Barbican, and Keri-Lynn Wilson conducted Barrie Kosky’s Carmen on the mainstage at Covent Garden.