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World-famous Opera star gives Cardiff operatic masterclass

14 November 2008

International opera star Dame Kiri Te Kanawa is to hold a public masterclass with students from Cardiff University’s International Academy of Voice.

Dame Kiri, who has agreed to become President of the Academy, will work with students of the Academy for week, culminating in a public masterclass with a selection of singers on Tuesday December 9th at 7.30pm, in the Reardon Smith Theatre, Cardiff.

Members of the audience will gain a unique insight into the teaching methods and vocal techniques used by one of the worlds’ most famous sopranos, as she passes on her immense knowledge to the Academy’s young up and coming singers.

Dame Kiri Te Kanawa is a familiar figure in the leading opera houses of the world, including Covent Garden, the Chicago Lyric Opera, Paris Opera and Sydney Opera House. She is best known for her repertoire of works by Mozart and Richard Strauss.

Director of the Academy, world-renowned tenor Dennis O’Neill said: "Dame Kiri Te Kanawa is not only the most famous Soprano in the World but has gained a unique place in the history of singing and in the hearts of the public across the globe. Not so well known is her unstinting devotion to the new generation of artists and the development of their talent. It is with immense gratitude and pride that we at the Cardiff International Academy of Voice announce that Dame Kiri has accepted the Honorary Presidency of the Academy"

The Academy provides a highly specialised and unique environment for a small number of exceptional singers at the early-professional stage, to develop and polish their talent to the highest standards.

The best coaches, language experts and technicians are complemented by visiting eminent conductors and international stars from the operatic world, providing an opportunity for singers to perfect vocal techniques and styles and fulfil their international potential.

The Academy’s first graduates are now working in the foremost opera houses of the world.

Tickets for the masterclass with Dame Kiri cost £12 full price, £10 concessions and £3.00 students and are available from the Academy on 02920 481853 or


Notes to Editors:

1. Cardiff International Academy of Voice

The Cardiff International Academy of Voice was formed to perfect the voices and musicianship of a new elite in world Opera. It is a joint initiative by Cardiff University and the Academy’s director, the renowned Welsh tenor Dennis O’Neill CBE. Students are selected from among the world’s most promising opera singers and each is given an individually-tailored programme of coaching. The programme includes daily one-to-one tuition, regular public performances in Wales and internationally, and a unique series of masterclasses from some of the world’s most eminent singers, conductors, accompanists and coaches. The Academy is ideally sited at Birchwood House, in the Cyncoed district of Cardiff, with specialised practice facilities and student accommodation in secluded, landscaped grounds.

2. Cardiff University

Cardiff University is recognised in independent government assessments as one of Britain’s leading teaching and research universities.

2008 marks the 125th anniversary of Cardiff University having been founded by Royal Charter in 1883. Today the University combines impressive modern facilities and a dynamic approach to teaching and research. The University’s breadth of expertise in research and research-led teaching encompasses: the humanities; the natural, physical, health, life and social sciences; engineering and technology; preparation for a wide range of professions; and a longstanding commitment to lifelong learning.

Cardiff is a member of the Russell Group of the UK’s leading research universities.

Visit the University website at:

Further Information:

For further information, please call:

Victoria Dando

Public Relations Office

Tel: 02920 879074