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Jacques Imbrailo: operatic roots

first_img17 November 2008South African opera singer Jacques Imbrailo, winner of the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Music 2009, has established an international career at the age of 30 that most artists struggle to establish in a lifetime.Imbrailo, who lives in London with his wife Cara, grew up on a farm in South Africa’s Free State province. He attended the Drakensberg Boys’ Choir School, studied law and music under Werner Nel at Potchefstroom University, and opera under Ryland Davies at the Royal College of Music in London.In September 2006 he joined the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, making his debut as Morales in Bizet’s Carmen in December 2006.In the 2007/08 season, he played Scythian in Iphigenie en Tauride, Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Morales in Carmen, the Flemish deputy in Don Carlos and the Wig Maker in Ariadne auf naxos. He also won the prestigious Audience Prize at the BBC’s Cardiff Singer of the World 2007 event.In the 2008/09 season he has extended his already impressive repertoire, playing Count Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro with conductor Emmanuelle Haim, Guglielmo in Cosi fan tutte with Opera Colorado and the Glyndebourne Touring Opera, and Schaunard in La Boheme with the Royal Opera House.Imbrailo says he will be singing in France, Wales, England and the US over the next two years.Winning the Standard Bank Young Artist Award means South Africans will get a chance to hear the internationally sought-after soloist in 2009. Winners receive a cash prize and financial support for their participation on the main programme of the National Arts Festival, Grahamstown.“My parents will be able to come and hear me sing, and it is such a lovely festival to be a part of,” Imbrailo said.“I think it is good for South African opera to have local singers with international careers,” says Imbrailo. “It inspires young singers and also attracts international directors to take an interest in South Africa.”Imbrailo says that James Bailieu, Vuyani Mlinde and Pumeza Matshikiza are some of the young South African artists he enjoys working with. “They all have a vibrant energy about what they do and phenomenal natural talent.“What sets them apart from many other young artists [in Europe] is their willingness to give blood and sweat and leave it on the piano or the stage when they finish. They give of themselves and not just what they need to, which makes seeing them work very thrilling.”Imbrailo sees his career as an opera singer as an opportunity to live out his faith. “I believe God uses me to do that where I work, and the fact that I am an opera singer is just a way to reach people.”The annual Standard bank Young Artist Awards were started in 1981 by the National Arts Festival, Grahamstown, with Standard Bank coming on board as a sponsor in 1984.The awards, seen as one of the most prestigious of their kind in the country, honour young South African artists who have not yet gained widespread national exposure or acclaim, but who are making a significant mark in their field.The awards recognize and actively promote the talent of these young artists, providing them with financial support and a platform for experimentation.Source: National Arts Festival, Grahamstownlast_img read more

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Asian Games 2010: Sodhi wins gold in men’s double trap event, ends India’s gold drought

first_imgRonjan Sodhi ended Indian shooters’ gold drought at the ongoing Asian Games by grabbing the yellow metal in the men’s double trap individual event in Guangzhou on Sunday.Sodhi shot 186 (139+47) to win the gold after qualifying second.The silver went to United Arab Emirate’s Shaikh Juma Dalmook Al Maktoum (182), while the bronze was bagged by Qatar’s Hamad Ali Al Marri (181) who finished on the podium after winning a shoot-off.The other Indians in fray, Asher Noria (134) and Vikram Bhatnagar (130) could not make it to the finals after finishing 11th and 16th respectively in the qualification round.Sodhi, Noria and Bhatnagar had clinched a bronze in the team event earlier in the morning.The Indian trio combined for a score of 403 after shooting 139, 134, 130 respectively.The Indian shooters’ medal count at the ongoing Asian Games now stands at one gold, two silver and four bronze.Sodhi, in fact, has been in fine form this year winning two silver medals in the Delhi Commonwealth Games last month.Earlier this year, the Arjuna awardee shot a perfect 50 hits out of 50 clays to set a new world record score of 195 and clinch the gold in the Double Trap event of the ISSF World Cup held at Lonato, Italy.- With inputs from PTIlast_img read more

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