Was a chorister at Westminster Abbey, ran away to play THE WINSLOW BOY in its first West End revival, was a member of the National Youth Theatre, read English at Cambridge and studied at the Royal College of Music Opera School.
He has sung not only baritone and buffo but also character tenor and bass roles. Operatic engagements include La Scala, Milan, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Paris Chatelet, Barcelona Liceu, English National Opera, Aix-en-Provence, Oper Kὅln, Muscat Royal Opera, Welsh National Opera, Bregenzer Festspiele, Wiener Festwochen, Almeida Opera, Aldeburgh Opera, Grange Park Opera, Garsington Opera, Opera Holland Park, London Contemporary Opera, MTL, in Hamburg, Amsterdam, Beijing, Tokyo, Rome, Venice, Batignano, Sydney, Melbourne, Auckland and the USA. New productions at ENO in which he has sung roles include LA BOHEME (two productions), LE GRAND MACABRE, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, THE TALES OF HOFFMANN, THE MERRY WIDOW, CANDIDE, DIE FLEDERMAUS.
| He has sung the baritone patter roles in Gilbert and Sullivan at the Savoy Theatre and throughout the UK, Europe, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, with D'Oyly Carte, Carl Rosa, Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Raymond Gubbay, Opera della Luna, Grange Park Opera, The Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company, BBC Proms, Philharmonia Orchestra, CBSO, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra and others.
Other roles he has sung include Ferrando, Ottavio, Basilio, Marcellina, Monostatos, Lensky, Orlofsky, Clorinda, Pangloss/Voltaire/Cacambo/Martin, Menelaus, Benoit, Bobinet, Jim Cocks, Lady Crusoe, Baron Zeta, Njegus, Dr Cajus, Andres/Cochenille/Frantz/Pitichinaccio, Black Minister, Starveling, Aminta, Arlecchino, Colonel Pickering, Maître Jean, Pickwick, General Deelah, Dr Blind and Frosch. Many of his performances have been televised by BBCTV, SkyTV and by German, French, Austrian, Spanish, Swiss, Czech, Slovakian, Bulgarian, Luxemburger, Maltese, Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese, Chinese and South African television.
At Aldeburgh Festivals he has performed PIERROT LUNAIRE, ENOCH ARDEN, FAÇADE, title role ARLECCHINO, Haushofmeister ARIADNE AUF NAXOS, Sparrow THE CRICKET RECOVERS and his own narrations for THE YOUNG PERSON’S GUIDE TO THE ORCHESTRA and PETER AND THE WOLF (with CBSO).
He has appeared as a soloist with the Philharmonia Orchestra, RLPO, CBSO, BBC Concert Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, China Philharmonic Orchestra, RTÉ Concert Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, the Tate ensemble and others.
HE HAS WRITTEN AND TRANSLATED for stage, screen and opera house: commissions include
a new play for LET’S MAKE AN OPERA, (Britten Estate/Aldeburgh Productions); his critically acclaimed television credits include writing and presenting the drama documentaries A SALARIED WIT (about George Grossmith), A GOOSEBERRY FOOL (about Oliver Goldsmith), and the five part series about Gilbert and Sullivan, A MOTLEY PAIR (Sky Arts/Capriol Films); he translated Mozart lyrics for WHAT MADE MOZART TICK? (Channel 4) and he has made versions of THE MAGIC FLUTE and Humperdinck’s HANSEL AND GRETEL (Wigmore Hall), THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO (Covent Garden Festival), FIDELIO (Brighton Festival/Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment), DIE ENTFUHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL (Boston Symphony Orchestra/Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment), THE MERRY WIDOW and DIE FLEDERMAUS (John Wilson/Philharmonia Orhcestra) and CARMEN, HELLO DOLLY, BRIGADOON (John Wilson/RTÉ Concert Orchestra), ORPHEUS IN THE UNDERWORLD (Opera Danube). He has written narrations to YOUNG PERSON’S GUIDE TO THE ORCHESTRA (CBSO, Philadelphia Orchestra and a live broadcast by BBCSO) and PETER AND THE WOLF (CBSO) and he has translated Schὅnberg’s BRETTL LIEDER. He adapted the screenplay, DRAW ON SWEET NIGHT, into seventeenth century English. He co-wrote the BBC Radio 4 drama series I AM THE VERY MODEL.
Other commissioned opera translations include LA COLOMBE, SOSARME, LA PIETRA DEL PARAGONE, IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA, FRA DIAVOLO and LA VOIX HUMAINE and he has published essays on Schὅnberg, Mahler, Strauss, Verdi, Britten, Lehar, Offenbach, Gounod, Gilbert & Sullivan and George Grossmith.
DIRECTING credits include
THE YEOMEN OF THE GUARD for the Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall and the RLPO at Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool; THE MERRY WIDOW (Philharmonia/RFH); DIE FLEDERMAUS (Philharmonia/RFH); HMS PINAFORE, THE MIKADO and THE VERY BEST OF GILBERT AND SULLIVAN at the Barbican, the Royal Festival Hall and on tour: THE MIKADO, IOLANTHE and PRINCESS IDA (for all of which he had five star reviews) for the International Gilbert and Sullivan Festival at Buxton Opera House; THE MIKADO and IOLANTHE for the Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company on tour; THE SOLDIER’S TALE, starring Edward Fox, THE MERRY WIDOW, ORPHEUS IN THE UNDERWORLD and DIE FLEDERMAUS for Opera Danube at St John’s Smith Square, London; Mahler’s LIEDER EINES FAHRENDEN GESELLEN and Schὅnberg’s BRETTL LIEDER (Britten Theatre); Gounod’s LA COLOMBE (West Green House Opera), and he staged the TURANDOT sequence in the Warner Bros. movie CHASING LIBERTY. He co-directed the BBC Radio 4 drama series I AM THE VERY MODEL.
FILM credits include
TOPSY-TURVY, NIGHT MUSIC, CHASING LIBERTY, FALSTAFF, WARLOCK, SOME LITTLE JOY, MEICOST ETTAL and DRAW ON SWEET NIGHT.
TELEVISION credits include
Two series of BY THE SWORD DIVIDED, STALKY AND CO, THE SILVER BUCKLE, AFTER THE WAR, TEN GLORIOUS YEARS, LET THEM EAT CAKE, THE LENNY HENRY SHOW, THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS, GOODBYE MR CHIPS, SPITTING IMAGE, LONDON’S BURNING, WHAT MADE MOZART TIC, TWENTIETH CENTURY GREATS, A SALARIED WIT, CANDIDE, THE MAGIC FLUTE, THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO, COSI FAN TUTTE, LA CENERENTOLA, SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER, A GOOSEBERRY FOOL, LA BOHEME, A MOTLEY PAIR, LE GRAND MACABRE, TANGLED UP IN TWINKLES, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, SHAKESPEARE LIVE!
THEATRE credits include
THE WINSLOW BOY (Albery Theatre); THE RELAPSE (Old Vic); THE WHITE GUARD and PETER PAN (RSC); AN ITALIAN STRAW HAT (Shaftesbury Theatre); SWEENEY TODD (Drury Lane); CATS (New London); CIDER WITH ROSIE and MUSICAL COMEDY MURDERS OF 1940 (Greenwich); EUGENE ONEGIN and SEVEN SONNETS OF MICHELANGELO (Lyric, Hammersmith); JOURNEY’S END (Drill Hall); HENRY V, GOODBYE MR CHIPS, VALMOUTH, FORTY YEARS ON and DIVORCE ME DARLING (Chichester); HAY FEVER, A WINTER’S TALE, CANDIDE, PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (UK tours) and seasons with Music Theatre London at the Donmar, Lyric Hammersmith, Peacock Theatre, Drill Hall and Arts Theatre.
RADIO credits include pieces by Tom Stoppard, Katherine Mansfield, Christopher Logue, the Radio 4 drama series I AM THE VERY MODEL (which he also co-wrote and co-directed), and the Radio 4 sitcom, TAKING IT UP THE OCTAVE, as well as live broadcasts of A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM (from La Scala, Milan and Aix en Provence), PATIENCE (BBC Proms), CANDIDE (from Paris Chatelet), PORGY AND BESS (from RFH), FRIDAY NIGHT IS MUSIC NIGHT (BBC) and his narrations for DIE ENTFUHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL (Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood) and THE YOUNG PERSON’S GUIDE TO THE ORCHESTRA (BBC Symphony Orchestra at Snape, for the Britten Centenary Celebrations). He has also presented Saturday Classics on BBC Radio 3.
He has recorded VALMOUTH and THE GIRLS OF RADCLIFF HALL as audio books for QClassics.