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Adjudicator: Melanie Armitstead

Melanie Armitstead has enjoyed an international career as a Soprano Soloist in both Opera and Concert.  Early in her solo career she sang under the baton of Sir Yehudi Menuhin, Sir Charles Groves and Andrew Parrott in Kent Opera and Scottish Opera-Go-Round.  As a soloist for ENO, Opera North, Scottish Opera and Opera Northern Ireland she sang the roles of Tatiana in Eugene Onegin, Micaela and Frasquita in Carmen, 1st Lady in The Magic Flute, Venus in The Return of Ulyses, Fiordiligi in Cosi fan tutte, Maria in West Side Story and YumYum in The Mikado.  She also understudied the roles of Hero in Beatrice and Benedict and Atalanta in Xerxes for ENO and Cleopatra in Giulio Cesare for the Paris Opera, returning to sing Mitridate and Le Chevalier Imaginaire at The Chatelet.  She performed in Oratorios and Concerts with many of the leading UK orchestras.  Recitals and concert performances took her to Holland, France, Spain, Gran Canaria, Singapore, Oman and Japan.

Melanie sang in a number of established ensembles including The Menagerie with Nicholas Daniel and Julius Drake and Classic Cocktail which mixed Classical and Jazz repertoire.  Her degree from Durham in Russian and French allowed her to specialize in French and Russian Song Recitals.

Melanie now teaches and adjudicates at Competitive Festivals and Competitions.  She was the Senior Singing Teacher at Sherborne Girls for 21 years and teaches advanced students privately.  She adjudicates at Competitive Festivals around the UK and in Hong Kong, and as a panelist in larger Competitions.