The Singing Cellist

2nd November 2014, Sunday 2pm

Simon WallfischRhodri Clarke

Simon Wallfisch (baritone/cello) – Rhodri Clarke (piano)


Composer Item
Schumann Dichterliebe op. 48
Strauss Morgen
Mercadante Il Sogno (voice and cello/piano)
Mozart La cidarem la mano
Ach ich fühl’s
Bei Männern
Donizetti L’amor funesto (voice and cello/piano)
Wallfisch The Aria

Concert details are correct at the time of posting but may be subject to change.

Simon Wallfisch (baritone/cello)

Born into a musical family, Simon Wallfisch began playing the cello aged 5. At 18 He was awarded a foundation scholarship to study at the Royal College of Music. After graduating as a cellist with Honours in 2004, Simon returned to the Royal College of Music to study voice, gaining a Post-Graduate Diploma. During his studies in London, he was awarded several prizes including The Georg Solti Foundation, Emmy Destinn Foundation, Giuseppe Di Stefano Competition Sicily, The DAAD, Countess of Munster Trust, The English Speaking Union and the Royal Overseas League “Young Singer of Promise”, Wallfisch left London for studies in Berlin and Leipzig in 2006. He was engaged at the Zurich Opera House on the Young Artists’ Programme in 2009. There he had the opportunity to sing several roles under the batons of Sir Mark Elder, Nello Santi, Phillipe Jordan, Ingo Metzmacher, Massimo Zanetti, and work with directors such as Konwischny, Michieletto and Poutney. Recent roles include Pelleas (Grimeborn/Bury Court 2013), Escamillo (National Reis Opera, Holland 2013). Wallfisch has broadcast on BBC Radio, Arte, Bayerische Rundfunk/Fernsehen, NordDeutsche Rundfunk, Swiss Radio.

During his studies in Leipzig, Wallfisch appeared as soloist in the Oper Leipzig, for the Bayerische Rundfunk and in Anhaltisches Theater Dessau, and Karl Die beiden Pädagogen (Mendelssohn) in Ludwigsburger Schloss Festspiele. He also sang as a guest artist at the Landes Theater Gera-Altenburg, Stadttheater Fürth and Theater Magdeburg.

On the concert platform, Wallfisch has performed works by Bach, Brahms, Handel, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Saint-Saens, Britten, Janacek and Orff in Musikhalle Hamburg, Wigmore Hall, Kings Place, Purcell Room, Cadogan Hall London, Douai Abbey Berkshire, Bridgewater Hall Manchester, Otto Braun Saal Philharmonie, Französischer Dom Berlin, Thomaskirche, Opernhaus Leipzig, Pier 2 Arena Bremen, with orchestras including the English Chamber Orchestra, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Zurich Konzert Chor, Frankfurter Sinfoniker, Reading Bach Choir, Imperial College Symphony Orchestra and the Wallfisch Band. In 2014 he will perform as soloist with the Leipizg Gewandhaus Orchestra.

As recitalist, Wallfisch was a featured artist at the Oxford Lieder Festival, London Purcell Room, St Georges Brandon Hill Bristol, and in 2010 he performed Schubert’s “Die Winterreise” with Graham Johnson. Wallfisch is in demand as recitalist in Germany, France and Switzerland.

Simon Wallfisch will make his debut CD recording with Nimbus Records in 2014.

Rhodri Clarke (piano)

The Welsh UK pianist Rhodri Clarke performs internationally as a vocal accompanist, instrumental accompanist and chamber musician. He is a graduate of the Royal College of Music London where he studied piano with Andrew Ball and piano accompaniment and chamber music with Nigel Clayton and Roger Vignoles. Rhodri has performed extensively in Europe, USA, South America and Asia. He has been fortunate to perform with artists of high international standing, including bass-baritone Bryn Terfel at a massed choral concert at Carnegie Hall and tenor Rolando with whom he recently released the Deutsche Grammophon CD “Mexico”, focussing on new arrangements of Mexican folk songs. In Dec 2010 he toured Mexico and Europe as chamber musician and accompanist with Villazon and the Latin-American chamber ensemble Bolivar Soloists, including most notably a performance at the Auditorio Nacional in Mexico City. He has performed in many of the major European concert halls, including the Vienna Konzerthaus, Berlin Philharmonie, Paris Theatre des Champs-Elysees, London Royal Festival Hall. Rhodri has collaborated with Berlin Philharmonic double-bass player Edicson Ruiz for successful performances at the Lucerne International Festival, Musica Atlantico Portugal, several recitals at the Berlin Philharmonie and a recital tour of Venezuela in 2010. Their repertoire consisted of new music written specially for the duo and more tradition concerto and sonata solo repertoire.

Since arriving in Melbourne last year, Rhodri has been in great demand as an accompanist and repetiteur and has performed with Opera Studio Melbourne, the Australian Boys Choir, Exaudi Youth Choir and the Melbourne Welsh Male Choir as guest accompanist. As an official accompanist he has been engaged by the Australian Double Reed Convention, where he performed with the oboist Celia Craig and in July of this year he will be the representative official accompanist for the states of Victoria, WA and ACT at the Australian Concerto and Vocal Competition in Queensland. Rhodri recently was a double prize winner at Victoria’s National Liederfest, at which he was awarded both Best Accompanist and Best Collaboration with the soprano Ashlyn Tymms for their performances of Korngold, Strauss and Grieg.