Opera Awards Foundation reveals 2019 bursary recipients

The 14 recipients will benefit from funding designed to develop operatic careers and maximise professional potential.

Bekki Bemrose
  • By Bekki Bemrose
  • 19 Nov 2019
  • min read
The 14 recipients will benefit from funding designed to develop operatic careers and maximise professional potential.

The Foundation has awarded bursaries totalling £60,000 for 2019/2020, which was raised though its annual gala dinner, plus donations from individual supporters.

The bursary recipients comprise 11 singers, a conductor, a director and an opera festival from across six countries (Ukraine, UK, South Africa, Greece, America and Canada).

The bursary funding will be used to help recipients with a variety of career expenses, from travel and living costs to course fees, promotional materials and professional coaching sessions.

In addition to the financial assistance, they will also benefit from advice and guidance from the International Opera Awards and its network.

The Opera Awards Foundation regularly organises and hosts recitals, masterclasses and other events for the bursary winners.

Harry Hyman, founder of the International Opera Awards, says: ‘After what has been another brilliant year at the Opera Awards, I am very proud to present this year’s Opera Awards Foundation bursary recipients. It’s very difficult with the economies around the world in the condition they’re in now for aspiring talent to develop, and I hope that we can make a positive impact on the opera scene by helping them onto the road to success. It means so much to be able to contribute and I get a real feeling of achievement when I see our young artists engaged by major opera companies and young artist programmes around the world. We look forward to welcoming these rising stars and to see how they progress over the next year and beyond.’

The 2019 bursary winners are as follows:
Anna Starushkevych, mezzo-soprano, Ukraine
Aphrodite Patoulidou, soprano, Greece
Caroline Modiba, soprano, South Africa
Claire Lees, soprano, UK
Ella Taylor, soprano, UK
Jack Holton, baritone, UK
Jacqueline Piccolino, soprano, America
Kieron Connor Valentine, counter-tenor, UK
Kseniia Nikolaieva, mezzo-soprano, Ukraine
Luvuyo Mbundu, baritone, South Africa
Sarah-Jane Lewis, soprano, UK
Vanessa Chartrand-Rodrigue, conductor, Canada
Xolane Marman, director, South Africa
Waterperry Opera Festival, UK

Applications for 2020 bursaries will open August 2020. For more information, please visit