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Photo: Anthony Farrimond

Neil Balfour

Voice Type:

Bass-Baritone

Nationality:

British

Country:

United Kingdom

Languages (fluent):

English, Italian, German, French, Spanish

Opera

Mercurio
La Calisto (Cavalli)
Longborugh Festival Opera
2019
Colline
La Boheme (Puccini)
Mananan Opera, Isle of Man
2019
Claggart
Billy Budd (Britten)
The Royal Opera House, Learning & Development
2019
Dottore Grenvil
La Traviata (Verdi)
Devon Opera
2018
Betto di Signa
Gianni Schicchi (Puccini)
Macready Theatre, Rugby
2018
Don Pasquale
Don Pasquale (Donizetti)
Mananan Opera, Isle of Man
2018
Colline
La Boheme (Puccini)
OFMAN Opera Studio, Spain
2018
Don Alfonso
Cosi fan Tutte (Mozart)
Opera Holland Park
2018
Mustafa
L'italiana in Algeri (Rossini)
Mananan Opera
2017
Colline
La Boheme (Puccini)
Outreach Opera
2017
Ben
The Telephone (Menotti)
Independent
2017
Erster Priest
Die Zauberflöte (Mozart)
Royal Northern College of Music
2017
Barone di Kelbar
Un Giorno di Regno (Verdi)
Royal Northern College of Music
2017
Lt. Ratcliffe (shadow role)
Billy Budd (Britten)
Opera North
2016
Figaro
Le Nozze di Figaro (Mozart)
Longborough Festival Opera
2016
Don Alfonso
Così fan tutte (Mozart)
Royal Northern College of Music
2016
Colline
La Bohème (Puccini)
Opera on Location
2016
Arkel
Pelléas et Mélisande (Debussy)
Royal Northern College of Music
2016
Quince
A Midsummer Night's Dream (Britten)
Royal Northern College of Music
2015
Notary
Don Pasquale (Donizetti)
Royal Northern College of Music
2015
Figaro
Le nozze di Figaro (Mozart)
Royal Northern College of Music
2015
Stanley
A Streetcar Named Desire (Previn)
Royal Northern College of Music
2015
Antonio
The Marriage of Figaro (in English) (Mozart)
Young Opera Venture
2014

Operetta/G&S

Lord Ellington
La Vie Parisienne (in English) (Offenbach)
Royal Northern College of Music
2016
Baculus
Der Wildschütz (Lortzing)
Royal Northern College of Music
2016
Paris
Ten Belles Without A Ring (Franz von Suppe)
Leeds College of Music
2010

Contemporary Opera

Dad / La-La
A Shoe Full of Stars (Omar Sharyar)
Gestalt Arts / The Opera Awards
2018
Soloist
What Cannot Be Turned Aside (Maeve Rendle)
OneTouch Gallery
2018
Nikolaus' father
Mysterious 44 (Kevin Malone)
Feelgood Theatre Productions
2016

Art Song

Soloist
Leeds Lieder for Little'Un's (Various)
Leeds Lieder
2019
Soloist
Leeds Lieder for Littl'Un's (Various)
Leeds Lieder
2018
Soloist
An afternoon of Balfour and Bolcom (William Bolcom)
Royal Northern College of Music
2017
Soloist
Hungarian Songs (Franz Liszt)
RNCM Chamber Music Festival
2017
Soloist
Songs before Sleep (Richard Rodney Bennett)
Royal Northern College of Music
2015
Soloist
Old American Songs (Aaron Copland)
Royal Northern College of Music
2015

Chorus

Chorus
La Traviata (Verdi)
Opera Holland Park
2018
Chorus
Cosi Fan Tutte (Mozart)
Opera Holland Park
2018
Chorus
Macbeth (Verdi)
Buxton Festival Opera
2017
Chorus
The Tsar has his Photograph Taken (Kurt Weill)
Leeds College of Music
2010

Oratorio/Concerts

Singer
Grenfell Tower Memorial Concert (Various)
Opera Holland Park
2018
Soloist
Opera Gala at Hoghton Tower (Various)
Hoghton Tower, Bolton
2018
Soloist
St. Matthew Passion (Bach)
The Guards Chapel, London
2018
Soloist
Mass in Time of War (Haydn)
Ilkley Choral Society
2018
Soloist
Classical & Musical theatre Selections (Various)
Moira Male Voice Choir
2016
Soloist
Operetta Concert (Offenbach & Gilbert & Sullivan)
Manchester G&S Society
2016
Wenceslas
Wenceslas (Bob Chilcott)
SingforPleasure
2015
Soloist
Requiem (Mozart)
SingforPleasure
2015

Covered Covered & Performed Scenes Premiere of New Work Concert

A Shoe Full of Stars - International Opera Awards 2016

Arkel - Pelleas et Melisande - Debussy - 2016

Don Alfonso - Cosi Fan Tutte 2016

Don Pasquale - Mananan Opera 2018

Don Pasquale- Mananan Opera 2018

Headshot - Neil Balfour - Colour

La Traviata - Devon Opera 2019

Lord Ellington - La Vie Parisienne - Offenbach - 2016

Mustafa - Italian Girl in Algiers

Mustafa - Italian Girl in Algiers (Papataci Trio)

Neil Balfour

Neil Balfour

Neil Balfour - Artsong

Neil Balfour - contemporary

Publicity Headshot - Neil Balfour - B&W

Quince - A Midsummer Night's Dream - 2015

Concordia Artist - Concordia Foundation (2019)

Opera North Mentor Scheme - Opera North & RNCM (2016)

Scholarship for Masters Study - Jane Anthony Memorial Award (2016)

Scholarship for Masters Study - South Square Trust Scholar (2016)

Full RNCM Scholarship - Royal Northern College of Music (2015)

One Year Scholarship - SingforPleasure (2013)

Competitions

Lesley Garrett Opera Class Winner - David Clover Festival of Singing (2017)

1st place French Song & Lied Class - David Clover Festival of Singing (2016)

Frederic Cox Singing Competition - Finalist (2015)

1st place British Composer & Vocal Duet - The Warde-Aldam Cup - Pontefract Singing Festival (2010)

"A principal with authority, command and style. Generous, empathetic artist with an exceptional stage personality . Evident attention to textual detail , musical nuance and interpretive expression . Elegant leading man. Characterisation of depth and insight, displaying a broad span of dramatic Interpretation . An energised visceral performer that provokes excitement." - Stefan Janski, Director of Mananan Opera (2018)

"Neil Balfour possesses an exceptionally beautiful baritone voice … an outstanding soloist. He directly contributed to the production's winning of the YAMAward for Best Opera for Young People 2018. Neil is an entrepreneur, an artist, a leader, an educator and an open heart with whom I hope everyone has the privilege of working with repeatedly." - Omar Sharyar, Artistic Director - Opera Schmopera (2018)

"Neil is without a doubt one of the top singers I've ever worked with. In fact he is a director's dream -- always completely prepared for a role but very flexible and inventive in the rehearsal room, and completely physically and emotionally engaged with both voice and body." - Ruth Mariner, Director - Gestalt Arts (2018)

“His voice was brilliant for the role, with very good clarity and purity as well as very careful projection and diction. At stage level, he was unbeatable, granting realism and quality to the character.” - Francisco Antonia Moya, Musical Director - OFMAN Opera, Madrid (2018)

"Charismatic stage artist , you cannot take your eyes off him. Strong sense of dramatic timing . Evident physical co-ordination . Expressive face and body A creative artist and musician , an exceptional ensemble player . A mime artist in the style of Marcel Marceau with a flair for comedy . His improvisation skills in the context of live theatre keep you on the edge of your seat." - Stefan Janski, Director of Mananan Opera (2017)

"The Bey himself, Mustafa (a devilishly handsome Neil Balfour), flirted insanely with the audience and his compatriots on stage with a mischievous zeal. We should hate this man for his misogeny but love him for his ridiculousness." - Fiona Helleur, Reviewer for the IOM Today (2017)

"Neil's artistry was perfect for the principle baritone role in the premiere of the Mark twain opera Mysterious 44. Intelligent, passionate, flexible, golden-toned singing and impressive acting, and excellent integration with the rest of the cast. A gem of a musician to work with." - Kevin Malone, Opera Composer of Mysterious 44 (2016)

"A late but enforced cast change meant that Neil took on the role of Don Alfonso only three weeks before the first night. This was a very courageous and impressive decision in itself. More impressive still, he went about approaching what would be a hugely daunting - albeit exciting - task for anyone in such a sensible, open, organised way, that he didn’t appear to waver for a moment either in his assessment of the size of the task or his faith and determination and confidence that he would get there. Given that so many other people are involved in a process like this, that to me showed a crucial balance of sensitivity, care and self possession, and these qualities held him in good stead as he continued. Neil presents a unique, clear, entertaining and honest character, free in the moment but disciplined in the structure. I feel enormously appreciative and respectful of that." - Thomas Guthrie - Director, 2016

"Neil Balfour brought this part to riveting life ... Outstanding. The best Don Alfonso I have ever heard!" - Gwenda Meredith, www.list.co.uk

"Neil Balfour excelled as Lord Ellington, giving a convincing performance with considerable stage presence ... He used his attractive voice, smooth with a slight dark edge, to his best advantage." - Michael Cookson, SeenandHeard - International

"Neil took on the role at very short notice... His Alfonso was dramatically alive and compelling... he sang extremely well." - Roger Hamilton, Conductor

“Neil is an intelligent and sensitive performer with an innate ability to adapt to varied styles of repertoire... a natural comic actor - he is as comfortable singing Mozart as he is performing Sondheim." - Garth Bardsley Director of Opera

PG Dip Advanced Studies
Royal Northern College of Music
2016–2017
MMus - Distinction
Royal Northern College of Music
2014–2016
Voice Training Still Level 1 & 2
Estill
2014
Voice, Piano & Guitar- Grade 8
ABRSM
2007–2014
BA (Hons.) Music
Leeds College of Music
2007–2010

Half-indian, half-scottish bass-baritone, Neil Balfour, is an opera singer whose repertoire spans a diverse range of music. He graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music with Masters distinction and is a current Concordia Artist.

Upcoming performances include Claggart in Billy Budd for The Royal Opera House’s Learning and Development, Mercurio in La Calisto for Longborough Festival Opera, Colline in La Boheme for Mananan Opera on the Isle of Man, Chorus in Aida for Opera North, Cold Genius in King Arthur for Hull Urban Opera Collective, Musical Actor in Dorian for Proper Job Theatre and soloist for the LeedsLieder Festival and Dore Male Voice Choir in Sicily.

Recent engagements include Colline in La Boheme for the OFMAN Opera Studio in Madrid, covering Don Alfonso for Opera Holland Park, being a young artist for Buxton Festival Opera, shadowing the role of Lt. Ratcliffe in Opera North’s production of Billy Budd and covering the title role in Le Nozze di Figaro for Longborough Festival Opera. Previously, Neil has performed the title role in Don Pasquale and Mustafà in L'italiana in Algeri for Mananan Opera (Isle of Man) and Doctor Grenvil and Marchese in La Traviata for Devon Opera.

Contemporary works have included premiering the roles of La-La (role sponsored by The Opera Awards) in A Shoe Full of Stars (YAM Awards Best Opera 2018) by Omar Sharyar, Nikolaus’ Father in Mysterious 44 by Kevin Malone, Best Man in Cheese by Lucy Armstrong (premiere at the Bridgewater Hall) and recording artist for Magnificat by Oliver Tarney and Convivium Records.

Other jobs of interest include being the creator of www.artsongstory.com, doing voice-over work for Youtube Channel’s with views on his videos reaching well over 100 million, premiering the first electronic opera, conducting 300+ mass choirs and performing a private show for Her Majesty The Queen.

Contact Neil Balfour

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