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» 13 Jan 2010 » 19:30 » St John's, Smith Square » £20, £15, £10 (Concessions £10)


Simon LepperPianist
Songs and arias by composers including Handel, Rossini, Saint-Saëns, Wagner, Strauss, and Bizet.

Within a short space of time Maria Radner has established herself as one of the most promising contraltos around today. Previous engagements include those at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome and at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Munich and this year she will make her debut at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam in Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with Philipp Herreweghe conducting.

Artist Biographies


Within a very short time young German contralto Maria Radner has established herself as one of the most promising contraltos. Still a student she debuted at Palau de les Arts Valencia in the deep and challenging contralto-part of Saul in Vincente Martin y Solers oratorio Philistaei a Jonatha disperse and made her recital debut at this very theatre in June 2008. Afterwards she debuted at Bregenzer Festspiele in the title-role of a concert-performance of Händel’s Salomo. These debuts were followed by a Parsifal new production with Lorin Maazel conducting in Valencia and her debut at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia Roma, where she sang Honegger’s Jeanne d’Arc au bucher under the baton of Antonio Pappano as well as her debut at Bayerische Staatsoper Munich as 3rd Dame in Mozart’s Magic Flute with Tomas Netopil conducting. Meanwhile graduated with honors Maria Radner made her debut at Teatro Real Madrid in Schumann’s Faust Scenes. Sir Simon Rattle engaged her for the roles of 1st Norn and Flosshilde in Twilight of the Gods for the Festival d’Aix en Provence 2009 and the Salzburger Osterfestspiele 2010 as well.

The season 2009/10 brings Maria Radner to the Canadian Opera Company Toronto in the new production of Strawinsky’s Le Rossignol. She makes her debut at Concertgebouw Amsterdam in Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with Philipp Herreweghe conducting and she returns to Bavarian State Opera in Magic Flute. After the Twighlight of the Gods at Salzburger Osterfestspiele 2010 Maria Radner sings Erda in concert performances of Rheingold at Oper Leipzig and Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with Antonio Pappano in Rome and Milan. In summer 2010 she appears for the first time at Salzburg Festival in a new production of Elektra.

Maria Radner still studies with Marga Schiml in Karlsruhe. She was scholarship holder of the Richard Wagner Association Bayreuth.

Simon Lepper

Simon Lepper was born in Kent and educated at King's College Cambridge and the Royal Academy of Music, London where he studied with Michael Dussek. He obtained a Dip.RAM, the highest award for postgraduate study, and was subsequently awarded the Hodgson Fellowship. This year he becam an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music. Competition successes include the 2000 Gerald Moore Award and the accompanist prizes in the 2002 Kathleen Ferrier Competition, 2000 Maggie Teyte Song Competition and the 1999 Royal Overseas League Competition

Simon works with many of the leading young singers of his generation including Karen Cargill, ,Jared Holt, Gillian Keith, Gweneth-Ann Jeffers, Kate Royal, James Rutherford and BBC New Generations artists Andrew Kennedy, Sally Matthews and Ailish Tynan.

Performances have included recitals in the festivals of Aldeburgh, Arundel, Brighton, Buxton, Chester, Chichester, Edinburgh Fringe, Newbury, Swansea and Three Choirs, and at venues including the Bridgewater Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room, St John's Smith Square and Wigmore Hall. Simon has appeared on Radio 2, Classic FM, BBC Wales and Japanese television. He frequently performs on BBC Radio 3. Recent broadcasts have included recitals with New Generations Artists Sally Matthews and Ailish Tynan (BBC Singer of the World in Cardiff Song Prizewinner) a recital of Dichterliebe with Jared Holt from the Waterfront Hall, Belfast and a performance of Die Schöne Müllerin from Gresford Church, Wales and an English Song recital with Roderick Williams.

Simon has recorded a CD of Debussy’s early songs with the soprano Gillian Keith on the Deux-Elles label. Recent engagements have included recitals at the Wigmore Hall with Karen Cargill, Andrew Kennedy, James Rutherford and Ailish Tynan, a recital with tenor Edgaras Montvidas at the Vilnius Festival, Lithuania and at the City of London Festival with Sally Matthews. Simon performed last season in China, France, New Zealand and Switzerland. He also toured the Baltic states with London Winds and the baritone Stephan Loges. Future engagements include recitals with Sally Matthews and Kate Royal at the Wigmore Hall, with Andrew Kennedy at the Bridgewater Hall and throughout Great Britain with the classical saxophonist Sarah Field and cellist Gemma Rosefield. Simon is an official accompanist for the BBC Singer of the World in Cardiff Competition.

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