The competition begins as 20 of the world's most outstanding classical singers, from 15 countries, compete in the 36th year of the BBC's premier voice competition for a place in the 2019 final.
The world’s most prestigious opera singing competition returns to St David’s Hall in Cardiff as 20 singers compete to become the next BBC Cardiff Singer of the World. Petroc Trelawny and Josie d’Arby present full coverage of this year’s competition. For Round 1, they are joined by acclaimed mezzo-soprano Katarina Karnéus, winner of this competition in 1995, as their special guest.
In this opening round, singers from the USA, Russia, China, Australia and New Zealand compete for a place in the Grand Final. To succeed, they need to impress a panel made up of leading opera figures: José Cura, Wasfi Kani, Dame Felicity Lott, Frederica von Stade and Chair of the Jury, David Pountney.
With music by Rossini, Mozart, Handel and Stravinsky, the singers are accompanied by the Welsh National Opera Orchestra conducted by Ariane Matiakh.