“Like almost everything else in the world, the ABL Aviation Opera Studio programme has been completely turned upside down this year due to the outbreak of Covid-19.” INO Studio and Outreach Producer James Bingham talks to us about how the studio is adapting.
We had hoped to stage a one act opera with our singers and director in July, we also had a run of coaching sessions and workshops lined up over the next few months as well as planned outreach activity, and all of this disappeared within a week
Irish National Opera always strives to ensure that we are supporting the operatic community in Ireland to the best of our ability. In the context of the ABL Aviation Opera Studio, this means continuing to provide support for our artists, especially at a time in history when being an artist couldn’t be more challenging.
Whilst it has not been possible for us to run sessions in person, Richard McGrath, our studio coach and répétiteur, has been working hard to find ways of meaningfully delivering coaching sessions with our singers online through pre-recording accompaniments and offering feedback on recordings.
Nathan Morrison and Vourneen Ryan
We’ve also been offering studio members a variety of different seminars, all deliverable online with a collection of guest speakers. Fergus Sheil, Artistic Director at Irish National Opera, led a roundtable with our singers on their career plans following the studio. Nathan Morrison, Associate Artist Manager at Askonas Holt, spoke with artists about the work agents do and what agencies look for when recruiting new artists. Performance Psychologist, Vourneen Ryan gave a presentation and online workshop on stress and anxiety in performance as well as sharing a range of skills and techniques on how to effectively manage this. Finally, actor and accountant, Peter Daly discussed managing tax and finances as a freelance artist.
Like everyone else in the world, the coming months are filled with uncertainty. We at Irish National Opera have to be quick-footed in managing activity that is safe, supportive and of genuine use to our artists. In whatever format, the ABL Aviation Opera Studio will continue to support Irish artists.