Dame Kiri te Kanawa announced as new Cardiff Singer patron

One of the biggest names in the operatic world, New Zealand soprano Dame Kiri te Kanawa, becomes the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition's second patron following the death of Dame Joan Sutherland last year.

She will also serve on the jury for the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition in June 2011.

Dame Kiri te Kanawa

Dame Kiri's passion for nurturing new operatic talent is well known, with her own foundation and as artistic director of the Solti te Kanawa Accademia di Bel Canto.

She said: "The event is of great significance to the opera world, giving young talented singers the opportunity to perform in the beautiful St David's Hall in Cardiff, where they will be heard on BBC radio as well as viewed by millions on television.

"From my own early experiences of studying at the London Opera Centre, now the National Opera Studio, I understand how essential it is to be given such a unique opportunity as this at the outset of one's career.

"It is an occasion which will reveal the finest quality of singers and I am very pleased to be a part of this extraordinary competition."

Dame Kiri sits on the jury for the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World for the first time, alongside tenor Dennis O'Neill and baritone Håkan Hagegård, who have each served once before. Also joining them is the legendary mezzo, Marilyn Horne, making her fifth visit.

Marilyn Horne and Håkan Hagegård will also serve on the jury for the Song Prize, where they will be joined by the distinguished accompanist Bengt Forsberg.

Full details of the two juries, along with the names of the 20 singers competing in Cardiff, will follow in March.


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