Next Year's Dates: 13 - 22 June 2024

Rachel Barnard (aged 24) – Mezzo-Soprano

Rachel Barnard – Mezzo-Soprano (pictured with her accompanist Beth Haughan)

Music College/University: Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Birthplace/Home Town: London

Q.1  What or who inspired you to become a professional musician?
I’ve been so lucky to have encountered incredible teachers throughout school who gave me the chance to experience music from a young age and who encouraged me to explore it further. Because of that, music has always been an inherent part of my identity. But it wasn’t until my late-teens that I discovered via my singing teacher at the time, Kate Warshaw, that singing could be studied at degree level. As soon as that idea was in my head it wasn’t difficult for me to ditch the idea of the traditional academic university pathway, and 6 years later I’ve not looked back!

Q.2  What are the biggest challenges you face in the early stages of your career?
There’s a lot of uncertainty that comes with a career in music and I’d say coming to terms with that fact is one of the hardest things! Learning to put yourself out there and being ready to face rejections are all part of the process and make the highs even higher.

Q.3  What would winning the New Voices Competition mean to you?
Having that recognition from such an esteemed panel would certainly be an honour. It would also open up wonderful connections to some of the great UK music festivals – places that I’ve always dreamed of performing at!

Q4.  What would you say to audiences to encourage them to come along, and hear you sing in Aldborough?
This is repertoire that my and my pianist really love and are so excited to share. You can expect fun, tragedy, cheekiness – a truly well-rounded way to spend an afternoon!

Q.5  What would be your dream job in singing?
Like most young singers, I’ve spent a lot of time with Mozart and the role of Dorabella from Così fan tutte is one I would absolutely love to play. But aside from that, if I can be in a positive rehearsal space with great musicians, I’m happy!

Q.6  What sort of music do you listen to when you are not working?
I hate to be the person that says they listen to a bit of everything, but it’s true. Except, perhaps, for heavy metal – I’m not there yet. But I will go from folk, to classical, to pop as my mood takes me. I think my Spotify algorithm gets a bit confused.

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