© Bayreuther Festspiele, Meistersinger 2018

News from the Members

WS London Singing Competition
The Wagner Society Singing Competition is open to singers of all nationalities resident in the United Kingdom and who will be no older than 32 years of age on 5th November 2017.


1. The Wagner Society Singing Competition is open to singers of all nationalities resident in the United Kingdom and who will be no older than 32 years of age on 5th November 2017.

2. The closing date for applications is 15th September 2017.

3. Application Forms and supporting documents must be sent by registered mail to The Secretary of The Wagner Society, 21 Lime Close, Wapping, London E1W 2QP or by e-mail to secretary@wagnersociety.org.

4. Applications must be accompanied by:

(a) full name and contact details;
(b) curriculum vitae to include details of education, occupation, career in music or art;
(c) detailed information on the musical studies of the applicant, including names of the applicant's Singing Professors during the last two years;
(d) DVD (HD) with recent performance of the applicant.  (Submitted recordings will not be returned);
(e) repertoire (Cycles of Songs, Oratorios, Operas etc.);
(f) the overall artistic activity of the applicant to date to include any further training being undertaken and career goals;

(g) details of participation in any other singing competitions to date and outcome(s);

(h) copies of any references which are available from either (i) schools or academies attended by applicant or (ii) any theatre in which applicant has worked;
(i) two recent photographs, size 9x12cm (original, jpeg or pdf, in high resolution, at least 300dpi);
(j) a photocopy of applicant’s passport or any other official document as a proof of date of birth;

(k) program to be performed including title and the act of arias intended to be performed; please also send photocopies of the text of chosen arias.

5. All works should be performed by heart in their original language and key. The sole exception to this rule will be those works which have been transposed into another key in internationally known editions.

6. Successful applicants will be invited to Auditions which will take place on 15th October 2017 at The English National Opera, Chorus Room, London Coliseum, St Martin’s Lane, London, WC2N 4ES. The invitation to the Auditions will indicate when applicants should attend.

7. The Finals will be held on 5th November 2017 from 2pm – 6pm at The Royal Overseas League, Princess Alexandra Hall Park Place, London SW1A 1LR. Applicants must perform (i) one piece by Wagner and (ii) one aria by any other composer. An accompanist will be provided for all stages of the Competition, including for a rehearsal on the morning of the Finals. Entrants may provide their own accompanist at their own expense.

8. Singers who have been accepted for either the Audition or the Finals, but who are unable to participate further are kindly requested to notify the Secretary of this fact at least 14 days before the next stage of the Competition.

9. The President of The Wagner Society, Dame Gwyneth Jones will lead the Jury which will also comprise: -  

Dame Janet Baker

Dame Felicity Lott

Maestro Martyn Brabbins (Music Director of The English National Opera)

            Peter Katona (Director of Casting, Royal Opera House Covent Garden)

10. The Finals of the competition will be attended by agents, opera artistic directors and other persons involved in music and having an interest in promoting the careers of the young laureates of The Wagner Society.

11. The decision of the Jury is final and no appeal shall lie from such decision.

12. Applicants must complete their application forms clearly in English clearly using capital letters and ensuring that they clearly show their surname, name, address, telephone and e-mail addresses as well as their program. A Word version of the Application Form will be available for download from the Society’s website at: - (insert this link)

13. The prizes are as follows: -

1st prize of £2,500.00;

2nd prize of £1,500.00;

3rd prize of £500.00;

Audience Award £500.00;

The President’s Award: A Public Masterclass with Dame Gwyneth Jones.

The winner of first prize will be nominated for a Bayreuth Bursary Award (“Bursary”) from the Richard Wagner Foundation (“Foundation”) in Bayreuth along with a contribution of £250 towards travel costs. The Jury may nominate other winners for a Bursary. The Foundation has the final say on the award of each Bursary. The Foundation will provide free accommodation to all winners. The Bursary entitles winners to attend three performances in the Festspielhaus during the 2018 Festival and to enjoy sharing the festivities with 250 other Bayreuth Bursary Award Winners from all over the World. Winners will also be entitled to apply for consideration for inclusion in the International Scholarship Winners Concert in 2018 (“Artists’ Concert”). If chosen for the Artists’ Concert, winners will get the chance to perform in front of International Opera Management Companies and Agents and other important people in the Music World.

14. Each winner of a prize agrees to his/her name being published in the Society’s list of prize winners in both Wagner News and on the Society’s website.

15. Each winner of a prize agrees to take part (without payment of any fee) in an event of the Society in the period which ends one year after the Bayreuth Bursary Programme awarded to the first prize winner.

More Information about the Bayreuth Bursary Foundation

Richard Wagner originally thought of his Festival in Bayreuth as a People’s Festival where entrance should be free of charge, similar to that which had existed for more than two thousand years in Ancient Greece. Since this was not really practicable, in 1882 (one year before his death) he suggested a new patronage, which would grant “the proficient friends of my art with free entry, if necessary through the acceptance to pay the costs for the journey and accommodation” thereby making a visit to the Festival possible for such friends. This is how the Richard Wagner Foundation was created.

The Society is a member of the Richard Wagner Verband International e.V, which together with other German and International Wagner Societies and companies, primarily provide the Foundation with the monies required to run its programme of 250 awards. The supporting societies also recommend the applicants for the awards. The “Friends of Bayreuth” (Gesellschaft der Freunde) also gives financial support to the Foundation.

The Foundation wishes to serve the promotion and study of the concept of the Bayreuth Festival. In order to make this possible (in accordance with its Constitution) the Foundation gives talented student musicians, singers or other stage workers (who in future might perform at the Bayreuth Festival) the opportunity to attend three performances of Wagner operas in the Festspielhaus during the Festival. The Foundation requires the talent of winners to be testified by the recommendations of theatres, colleges, academies and schools. The Applicants must be between 18 and 35 years old. The Scholarship can only be awarded once to an applicant.

As things stand the Scholarship Programme for 2018 will include the following (which may be subject to change): -

Sunday,          05.08.2018     Arrival of Winners

Monday,           06.08.2018    “Lohengrin” (New Production with Thielemann)

Tuesday,         07.08.2018     “Der Fliegende Holländer”  (Revival)

Wednesday,    08.08.2018     “Parsifal”

Thursday,        09.08.2018     International Scholarship Winners Concert 2018

Friday,                        10.08.2018     Departure

Other activities (yet to be announced) are expected to include a Welcome Ceremony, a Guided Tour of the Bayreuth Festival House, a ceremony to lay a wreath on the grave of Richard Wagner, a Reception at the Town Hall by the Lord Mayor of Bayreuth, Brigitte Merk-Erbe, a Guided Tour of the city of Bayreuth, an introductory presentation before each Opera Performance and several invitations for the Scholarship Winners to dine together. Details of how to apply to partake in the International Scholarship Winners Concert will be sent to winners by the Foundation.

We would draw the attention of all potential participants and their friends and colleagues to the fact that all students, under 30s and YPIA members maybe join the Wagner Society free of charge with the relevant ID/proof.  As members, they are then entitled to attend most events free of charge.