Summer 2019 Roundup Premiere of 'Frida' by Paul Edlin

We were thrilled to be asked by the Oxford Festival of the Arts to give the premiere of Frida by Paul Edlin in July.

Frida is an operatic monodrama that sets text from the diary of Frida Kahlo in twelve tableaux. The role of Frida was sung by British mezzo-soprano Katie Bray, who recently won the Dame Joan Sutherland Audience Prize at the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World. We gave the premiere to a full house on 3rd July at the Jacqueline du Pré Music Building at St Hilda’s College, Oxford.

ELMG musicians with Paul Edlin and Katie Bray after the performance

ELMG musicians with Paul Edlin and Katie Bray after the performance

Paul Edlin’s music had a huge variety of tone colour and moments of real poignancy, drama, and beauty. The score required a string quartet, flute, clarinet, and the Magnetic Resonator Piano. The Magnetic Resonator Piano was invented by Andrew McPherson in the Augmented Instruments Laboratory at Queen Mary University of London. It makes all sorts of fascinating sounds. You can find out more about it here

Many thanks to Karin André from StageTalk magazine for coming to the show and giving us a five-star review. You can read the full review here.

…East London Music Group, played with passion and commitment and we were also treated to recorded and sampled sounds from a Magnetic Resonator Piano, as well as a conventional piano. The conductor, Matthew Hardy, who is the group’s founder and Artistic Director, kept it all together with much sensitivity.

The elfin, bare-footed, mezzo-soprano, Katie Bray (fresh from winning the prestigious Joan Sutherland Prize in the 2019 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition), sang Frida’s words with tremendous passion…

Karin André 4th July 2019

We’re very much looking forward to bringing this work to East London for more performances in 2020. Watch this space…