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Studio Artists 21/22

Artists

Connor Baiano - Photo

Connor Baiano

Bass

Born in Italy, and raised in the United Kingdom, Connor is a British-Italian bass who studied at the Royal Northern College of Music (BMus with Hons), the Royal Academy of Music (MA, LRAM), and Royal Academy Opera (Advanced Diploma in Opera), where he learnt with Mark Wildman and Ingrid Surgenor.

Connor’s recent operatic performances include Don Alfonso in Cosí fan tutte and Peter Quince in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Other roles include Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte, Colline in La bohème, Bertrand in Iolanta, and Lakai and Truffaldin in Ariadne auf Naxos. In 2020 Connor was billed to sing Superintendent Budd in Albert Herring, however this was cancelled due to the pandemic. He has performed scenes from L’Italiana in Algeri as Mustafa, Rusalka as the Water Gnome, Don Giovanni as Il Commendatore, The Rake’s Progress as Father Trulove, and Falstaff as Pistola, as well as performing in a number of choruses.

He was a recipient of the Colin Murray and Verdun Davies Scholarships at the Royal Academy of Music for his MA, and the Charles Mackerras Award for his Advanced Diploma with Royal Academy Opera.

He is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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William Desbiens - Photo

William Desbiens

Baritone

French-Canadian baritone William Desbiens was born in Québec City, Canada in 1997. He graduated with a BM at the Mannes School of Music in New York under his teacher Arthur Levy.

William has performed the roles of Il Conte d’Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Dandini in La Cenerentola, Silvio in Pagliacci and more. He attended an intensive week-long masterclass with renowned Canadian tenor Richard Margison. He also attended the Voice Experience and Opera as Drama programmes under the famous baritone Sherrill Milnes.

In 2020 and 2021 he was awarded an encouragement award at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and was a finalist at the Carolyn Bailey and Dominick Argento National Opera Association competition.

He is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Manon Gleizes - Photo

Manon Gleizes

Soprano

Hailing from Provence, French soprano Manon Gleizes graduated from the Lyon Conservatoire, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (BA with Hons), Le Pôle Lyrique d’Excellence and the Sibelius Academy (MA in Opera).

Known for her versatile energy, she sang Angelica in Suor Angelica, Lady Billows in Albert Herring, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte at the Sibelius Academy; Nedda in Pagliacci and La Baronne in La vie parisienne at the Bazoches Festival; and, Junon / Minerve in Orphée aux enfers at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Future engagements include Madame Lidoine in Le Dialogue des Carmélites in Lyon and Helmwige in Die Walküre at the Eurajoki Bel Canto Festival.

On the concert stage, she has performed excerpts from Norma (Norma) with the Sinfonia Lahti, various scenes from Ariadne auf Naxos (Ariadne), Hänsel und Gretel (Mutter) and Die Tote Stadt (Lucienne) at the Sibelius Academy, Madama Butterfly (Cio-Cio-San) and Thaïs (Thaïs) at the Suruton Festival Savonlinna, and La bohème (Mimi) and La traviata (Violetta) in the Lyon Opera House Auditorium.

Her performances with orchestras have included singing with the Cannes Symphony Orchestra, the Lilly Orchestra and a tour with the SASO Orchestra for a tour in Finland.

She was awarded the first prize at the Les Clefs d’Or Competition in 2018 and has received support from the R. Wagner Lyon Society, the Drake Calleja Trust, the Selmi Eskelinin Foundation, the Sibelius Academy, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Soroptimists National France.

She is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Aaron Godfrey-Mayes - Photo

Aaron Godfrey-Mayes

Tenor

British tenor Aaron Godfrey-Mayes was a member of Royal Academy Opera under the tutelage of singing teacher Mark Wildman and vocal coach Iain Ledingham. Aaron also completed his undergraduate and postgraduate degree at the Royal Academy of Music, achieving a first class honours and distinction respectively.

Aaron has been a choir member in the Royal Academy of Music / Kohn Foundation Bach Cantata Series performances with Iain Ledingham, Masaaki Suzuki and Philippe Herreweghe. He has also taken part in masterclasses with Dennis O’Neill, Ann Murray, Ian Partridge and John Copley, received the Kenneth Loveland Bursary and played Flute in Royal Academy Opera’s production of Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Aaron was awarded the Royal Academy of Music Pavarotti Prize, the Recital Prize in the David Clover Festival of Music Singers’ Platform, the Nineteenth Century Opera Prize in the National Mozart Singing Competition and first place in the Nottinghamshire Masonic Music Association Competition.

More recently, Aaron played the role of Ferrando in Così fan tutte with the Covent Garden Chamber Orchestra, Wagner/Nereo in Mefistofele with the Chelsea Opera Group and Borsa in Rigoletto with Nevill Holt Opera. During the summer of 2019, Aaron was an Alvarez young artist with Garsington Opera where he was a chorus member in Don Giovanni and Monteverdi’s Vespers. Aaron returned to Garsington Opera in 2021 as a chorus member and to cover the role of Triquet in Eugene Onegin

He is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Marianna Hovhannisyan - Photo

Marianna Hovhannisyan

Soprano

The young Armenian soprano Marianna Hovhannisyan graduated from the Yerevan State Conservatoire in 2019 with an MA in classical singing. Roles to date have included Adina in L’elisir d’amore, Norina in Don Pasquale, Nella and Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi and Violetta in La traviata. As a soloist she regularly performs with the Armenian Junior Philharmonic and Chamber Orchestras. She is also an associate artist of the Yerevan Opera Studio. 

In September 2019, Marianna covered the role of Susanna and performed as a chorus soloist in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro at The New Generation Festival, Florence. During her time in Florence, Marianna took part in masterclasses with Dr Ralph Strehle (National Opera Studio, RCS), Jane Irwin (RNCM) and Scott Johnson (RCS).

Alongside her music career, Marianna is a professional dancer with the Berd Armenian National Dance Ensemble in addition to performing as a drummer at Yerevan Drums all-girl ensemble.

She is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Aebh Kelly - Photo

Aebh Kelly

Mezzo-soprano

Irish mezzo-soprano Aebh Kelly was born in Dublin in 1997.  She is a recent graduate of the Royal Irish Academy of Music where she studied with Virginia Kerr and Dearbhla Collins and was awarded a first class honours degree. Aebh subsequently completed a postgraduate year of study on the Professional Mentorship Programme at RIAM.

Aebh completed the 2020/2021 season with the Irish National Opera ABL Aviation Opera Studio where she was the youngest ever studio member.  During this year she worked closely with vocal consultant Brenda Hurley and mezzo-soprano Tara Erraught. Aebh was involved in a variety of productions, including 20 Shots of Opera, La bohème, Alice’s Adventures Underground and A Thing I Cannot Name, a new Irish opera.

In November 2020, Aebh was the recipient of a generous bursary for emerging young artists from the Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition. Having won the RIAM concerto competition singing Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen she was due to make her debut with the Irish National Symphony Orchestra in July 2020 in the National Concert Hall, Dublin.  Aebh was a final round competitor in the 2019 Neue Stimmen competition in Gütersloh, Germany and was invited back to take part in the 2020 Neue Stimmen Masterclass Series.

She is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Matteo Londero - Photo

Matteo Londero

Répétiteur

Matteo Londero graduated in piano with full marks and honours from the J. Tomadini Conservatoire in Udine and from the Accademia Nazionale Santa Cecilia in Rome where he studied with Maestro Benedetto Lupo. He continued his studies with the pianist Lukáš Michel in the Erasmus project at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Ostrava and at the Accademia del Belcanto Rodolfo Celletti in Martina Franca in 2020. Over the years he has taken courses run by Daniel Rivera, Andrea Lucchesini, Eugen Indjic, Yuri Didenko, Massimiliano Ferrati, Pierluigi Camicia and Enza Ferrari.

Matteo has been awarded prizes in various national and international competitions, both as a soloist and in chamber music groups, including the Fabris Prize in Trieste in 2013. He was among the five finalists of the Malta International Piano Competition in 2017. He made his debut as a répétiteur in 2018 working on productions of Suor Angelica and Nabucco, conducted respectively by Walter Themel and Eddi De Nadai. He subsequently worked as a répétiteur for the Vicenza-based conductor Pierangelo Valtinoni on a production of The Wizard of Oz, and in August 2019 he was the répétiteur (piano and harpsichord) for the Historic Workers’ Society of Pordenone which staged Rossini’s Il barbiere di Siviglia. He was also hired as the assistant répétiteur for productions at Teatro La Fenice in Venice in both September 2019 and June 2021. Since 2019 he has been working as an accompanist at the Benedetto Marcello Conservatoire in Venice.

He is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Grisha Martirosyan - Photo

Grisha Martirosyan

Baritone

Armenian baritone Grisha Martirosyan was the 1st prize winner of the 2019 Gohar Gasparian Armenian National Singing Competition. In 2021 Grisha graduated with an MA from the Yerevan State Conservatoire.

In 2020, Grisha spent a term at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland on the Erasmus exchange programme. The student productions of opera scenes included roles such as the title role in Eugene Onegin, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, Malatesta in Don Pasquale, Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Germont in La traviata and Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor.

Grisha is a keen student of song and has recently started exploring German Lieder in particular.

He is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Maria Miller - Photo

Maria Miller

Mezzo-soprano

Mezzo-soprano Maria Miller is a proud native of Paducah, Kentucky. In 2021, she was an Apprentice Artist at Des Moines Metro Opera, covering Mrs Lovett in Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, and a Resident Artist at Sarasota Opera, covering The Sorceress in Dido and Aeneas

With the Cincinnati Opera, she made her house debut as Nancy Smith in the world premiere of Blind Injustice, was part of Opera Fusion/New Works Workshops as Rumer in William Menefield’s Fierce and as Celeste in Gregory Spears’ Castor and Patience, served as core chorus for the 2017 and 2019 seasons, and is involved in year-round programming. She is a soloist with Opera on the James, the Hilton Head Symphony (Elijah), Collegium Cincinnati (Messiah, Bach B Minor Mass), Kentucky Symphony Orchestra (Vivaldi Gloria, Mozart Requiem) and May Festival (Bernstein MASS). She also attended the Crested Butte Music Festival: RISE Camp with her duo Opera in Overalls, whose mission is to create recitals using the principles of devised theatre.

Maria received an Encouragement Award at the MONC Southeast Regional Auditions in both 2019 and 2020, after winning the West Tennessee Districts for both years. She also received the Treigle Award in the 2019 Corbett Competition. Maria holds both a MMus and a BMus in Voice from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatoire of Music. She studied theatre education, dramaturgy and French at the University of Louisville, the Institute for American Universities in Aix-en-Provence and the University of Evansville.

She is currently a Studio Artist at Mascarade Opera Studio, Florence, Italy.

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Kristina Yorgova - Photo

Kristina Yorgova

Répétiteur

Currently a Studio Artist répétiteur at the Mascarade Opera Studio, pianist Kristina Yorgova graduated with a MMus from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland where she studied with Prof. Petras Geniusas and Prof. Fali Pavri. 

She was a finalist at the 8th Stasys Vainiunas International Piano Competition in Lithuania. Kristina also won the Bach Prize for organ, piano and harpsichord in Glasgow. She was selected to be the RCS representative at the Intercollegiate Beethoven Sonata competition in the UK. 

Kristina has performed as a soloist with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra, RCS Symphony Orchestra and the Stara Zagora and Vidin orchestras in Bulgaria. She has played recitals in venues across Europe including Bulgaria, Belgium, France, Germany, Lithuania, Norway and Russia. 

Kristina is passionate about working in collaboration with singers, her most recent duo being with mezzo-soprano Svetlina Stoyanova, currently pursuing a career at the Vienna State Opera.

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Alumni

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Floriana Cicio

Soprano

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Xavier Hetherington

Tenor

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Gabrielė Kupšytė

Mezzo-soprano

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Paweł Trojak

Baritone

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Polixeni Tziouvaras

Mezzo-soprano

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Henry Websdale

Répétiteur

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Alexandria Wreggelsworth

Soprano

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Lauren Young

Mezzo-soprano

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Ángel Vargas

Tenor

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Florence

With a compact city centre, Florence is easy to travel around on foot, and is well connected to other cities in Tuscany, Italy and further afield by rail.

Accommodation

Finding somewhere to live in a new city or country can be difficult, and while we don’t have campus accommodation, we offer support in finding accommodation for our Studio artists.

In particular, if there are any additional requirements you need of your accommodation – for example, an accessible or family-friendly apartment – that would impact on your decision to apply to audition, please get in touch to discuss how we can be support you on info@mascaradeoperastudio.it

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