30th August - 9th September 2023
Maestro Ubaldo Fabbri served as musical collaborator and coach at the Rossini Opera Festival from 1986 through 2001. A member of the faculties at the Rossini Conservatory and the Accademia Rossiniana in Pesaro, Italy, he has collaborated with some of the major singers of our time, including Luciano Pavarotti with whom he appeared in a television documentary on the tenor's career in Italy and internationally. He is the official accompanist/coach for the Maria Callas International Competition. His Master Classes on the Art of Bel Canto have been presented at the Curtis Institute of Music, Julliard School, Manhattan School of Music and Mannes School of Music, Trinity College London and the Royal College of Music and Drama, Glasgow. He has served as the primary coach for the Italian operatic repertoire for Lingua del Canto for 6 seasons.
Soon to be published in English is Maestro Fabbri's A Practical Study of Italian Diction and Phonetics for Opera Singers.
In 2004 Maestro Fabbri created the Voci nel Montefeltro (Voices of Montefeltro) Opera Academy for Belcanto Diction, Phrasing and Expression at Novefeltria, currently a summer school but with plans to operate throughout the year. The Palazzo Lombardi (formerly the secondary school) has been made available to him on a year round permanent basis by the municipality.
London born soprano, Charmian Bedford, has garnered an international reputation for her work on both the operatic stage and concert platform. She is a graduate of Cambridge University and Trinity Laban.
Career highlights also include staged Monteverdi operas with The Academy of Ancient Music at the Barbican, Venice and Bucharest and Bach's Christmas Oratorio with The Australian Chamber Orchestra at Sydney Opera House and Melbourne's Hamer Hall. Repertoire ranges from Berio to Mahler. She has appeared with Garsington Opera, English National Opera and Opera North among others and has enjoyed a close relationship with The Academy of Ancient Music for many years. With Richard Egarr at the helm she has performed on BBC Radio 3, at the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, and repeat performances of Dido and Aeneas in China, North Africa, Cyprus, Norway and at The Barbican and Wigmore Hall, London. Charmian works frequently with electronic composer and DJ, Mira Calix and has debuted songs of hers for Opera North, Streetwise Opera and at Kings Place. Further premieres include roles in works by John Barber, Hannah Conway, Daniel Thomas Davis, Orlando Gough and Nicola LeFanu.
Charmian is fast establishing herself as a sought-after teacher of Classical and Musical Theatre singing and her continued studies with international pedagogue, Professor Janice Chapman are at the centre of her teaching across all styles of singing. In addition to her private teaching studios in East London and Aldeburgh, Suffolk, Charmian has taught at the Junior Royal Academy of Music, has been a panelist for the Junior Kathleen Ferrier Award and given a number of masterclasses, most recently at Trinity Laban. See www.charmianbedford.com
Diana Beckett is a semi-professional singer who first came on this course as a student in Urbania in 1999 and has been coming back regularly since then. She thinks working with Ubaldo and his team is such a wonderful and enriching experience that she has been organising the course since 2006.
Francesca Lauri recently graduated from the Trinity Laban Conservatoire for Music and Dance with a First-Class Honours degree receiving the TCL Silver Medal for piano studies and winning the David Gosling Prize for Piano Accompaniment. During her time there, she won the duo prize in the Lilian Ashe French Song Competition and the English Song Prize two years in a row. She is currently studying Collaborative Piano with Simon Lepper, Kathron Sturrock and Roger Vignoles at the Royal College of Music and is the recipient of the Ian Evans Lombe Scholarship. Francesca has performed in venues such as Wigmore Hall, Milton Court, the Fazioli Concert Hall, LSO St. Luke’s and Teatru Manoel in Malta. She recently won the RCM Lieder Competition piano prize and is also the winner of the 2022 Somerset Song Piano Prize and the AESS Dorothy Richardson English Song Piano Prize. In recent years, Francesca has participated in masterclasses with Veronique Gens, Dame Sarah Connolly, Kate Royal, Nikky Spence and Stephan Loges.
As well as performing song repertoire, Francesca has repetiteured for various opera companies such as for HCO’s production of ‘Don Pasquale’ last Easter and SPO’s production of ‘Albert Herring’ last summer. She was also assistant conductor for Gothic Opera on their double bill of operas by female composers; ‘Le Loup Garou’ by Louise Bertin and ‘Le Dernier Sorcier’ by Pauline Viardot in October. Francesca recently repetiteured for the RCM Opera Scenes and her projects for 2023 include repetiteuring for Hurn Court’s production of Puccini’s ‘La Boheme’ and the Opera Maker’s concert of ‘Der Wald’ by Ethel Smythe.
A native Italian, Ilaria Ciccioni is a permanent faculty member of Voci nel Montefeltro. She graduated from the University of Bologna with a master's degree in translation and conference interpreting and in 2008 received the DITALS ll certificate for teachers of Italian as a second language, from the University of Sienna. Since 2002, she has worked as a teacher of Italian for international students in various private schools, where she has combined her interest in language with her love for culture, art and history. Her teaching method involves comparative studies of grammar rules between Italian and other languages, as well as speaking and listening activities. Concurrently Ilaria works as a free-lance translator and interpreter, specialising in law related documents and is a member of the Italian Translators and Interpreters' Association, AITI. She has been working with the summer international programmes at the Voci nel Montefeltro academy, since its inception in 10 years ago.
She also offers field trips to many artistic and historical sites, especially in the Montefeltro and Valmarecchia regions.