The Two Moors Festival offers a broad range of activities, including a Residency scheme that gives musicians at any stage in their professional careers the opportunity to work at leisure in an environment away from the demands of a stressful schedule. The facilities, set within idyllic surroundings in the heart of Exmoor, include a studio with Bösendorfer Imperial Grand piano and excellent acoustics; comfortable accommodation; good food and wine; glorious moorland scenery. The relaxed atmosphere is conducive for artists to arrange their personal practice schedules. The 2MF Residency is an outstandingly successful venture, increasingly in demand as the word spreads throughout the music profession.
Reasons for doing a Residency could include:
- Preparation for a recording, competition or extensive tour
- Working on new repertoire
- Rehearsing for a concert or debut recital
- Working with a new ensemble
- Writing a composition
Most Residencies last four days. During that time artists rehearse for up to ten gruelling hours a day – it is their choice. They can help themselves to food at their convenience and the evening meal is home cooked and washed down with generous quantities of excellent wine! Artists are asked to give a small public recital to about thirty people at the end of their Residency. These are informal, often with conversation between the artists and audience. Most people stay for supper afterwards as it provides a good opportunity to meet the Performers.
In addition, selected artists are invited to give a concert in London at a specified venue.
Word is spreading fast about the Festival’s Residency Scheme. Please contact the Artistic Director, Penny Adie for further details.
“At the end of the residency I gave a concert featuring the vast majority of the repertoire I was preparing for the Montreal International Piano Competition. Looking back now I can see how crucial this was in my journey towards winning the first prize, because it was really the only time I was able to play the pieces through consecutively in front of a large audience during the lead-up to the competition. I made a video recording of the recital and that became a new starting point from which to build on and improve further in the days following the residency.” Jayson Gillham in preparation for the 2014 Montreal International Piano Competition (First Prize Winner)
Alexander Soares (piano)
Praised as a pianist of “huge intensity” (The Telegraph), Alexander Soares is developing a reputation as an artist of formidible technique and virtuosity, with performances of “diamond clarity and authority” (BBC Radio 3 ‘In Tune’). In 2015, his performance in the BBCSO / BBC Radio 3 ‘Boulez at 90’ celebrations received widespread critical acclaim in the press, described as a “brilliantly unbuttoned account” (The Sunday Times) and “most memorable of all” (The Financial Times). The 2014-15 season began with a BBC Radio 3 broadcast of the rarely heard piano repertoire of John Tavener, and included Alexander’s debuts at the Queen Elizabeth Hall and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the latter performance applauded for its “explosive sound world, pulling out a rich array of colour and texture” (The Herald). He was awarded 1st prize and Gold Medal in the prestigious Royal Overseas League Competition, and was subsequently selected as a 2015 Artist by City Music Foundation. 2016-17 highlights include returns to Wigmore Hall, West Road, Cambridge and St. James’s Piccadilly, and debuts at various festivals across the U.K.
Michael Mofidian (baritone) and Keval Shah (piano)
Winners of the Oxford Lieder Festival
Michael Mofidian studies with Mark Wildman and Audrey Hyland at the Royal Academy of Music. A RAM/Kohn Foundation Bach scholar and a member of the RAM Song Circle, Michael is the grateful recipient of awards from the Countess of Munster Musical Trust, the Sir James Caird Travelling Scholarships Trust, Kirsten and Dwight Poler, Help Musicians UK, and the ABRSM. Previously he read Music at Jesus College, Cambridge, graduating with first-class honours.Operatic roles include Colline (La bohème), Ferryman (Curlew River), Noye (Noyes Fludde), and Parson/Badger (The Cunning Little Vixen). In concert, Michael has performed with orchestras including the Britten Sinfonia, and was recently a soloist under the baton of Sir Mark Elder. Other performances include Stravinsky’s Les noces, Haydn’s Creation, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and both Bach Passions. As a recitalist he recently made his début at the Wigmore Hall, and has also performed at the Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh with Malcolm Martineau.
Keval Shah performs extensively as a song accompanist and chamber musician. A former Junior Academy student, he was then a Bateman Scholar and Pembroke Lieder Scholar at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, where he won all of the major Music prizes, and graduated with double first-class honours in 2015. He now studies at the Royal Academy of Music under Michael Dussek, Audrey Hyland, and Malcolm Martineau.
Keval’s recital schedule has taken him across the UK and Europe, including to the Great Comp Festival and the Danish National Centre of the Performing Arts. In 2016, he was a finalist at the Royal Overseas League Competition, winning the Audrey Strange Award with the mezzo-soprano Emma Stannard, and also won the Academy’s Elena Gerhardt Lieder Prize. Keval is a member of the Academy’s prestigious Song Circle, with whom he has given concerts for the Park Lane Group and for the Austrian Cultural Forum.
Highlights of the 2016/17 season include debut appearances at St Martin-in-the Fields and at the Oxford Lieder Festival, as well as recitals at Colston Hall, Bristol and in France.
In addition to his work as a song accompanist, Keval is a passionate vocal coach. He has trained at the North Sea Vocal Academy in Denmark with Audrey Hyland and Richard Hetherington, and regularly works as an assistant to Mary King and Steven Varcoe.
Keval combines his work as a coach with teaching positions at the Royal Academy of Music's Junior Academy and at Cambridge University.
January 16 - 20 2017
Suzanne Fischer (soprano) and Panaretos Kyriatzidis (piano)
A Britten Pears Young Artist in 2014 and 2015, soprano Suzanne Fischer recently won first prize at the Oxford Lieder Young Artist Platform 2016, the Förderpreis for most promising young artist at Das Lied: International Song Competition 2015 as well as the Pavarotti Prize at the 65th Viotti Competition in Italy and in September 2015 sang at the Prinzregententheater with the Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra, winning 4th place at the International ARD Competition.
In Summer 2016 she returned to Glyndebourne Festival Opera, which including singing the part of Elsie Suddaby in Ralph Vaughan Williams Serenade to Music with Vladimir Jurowski conducting the London Philharmonic Orchestra. In August and September 2016, with revivals in winter 2016 and 2017 she will sing Berta in Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia with the Münchener Kammeroper. Operatic performances include Ginevra/Ariodante for Tristan & Associates and Katja/O.H.I.O for the Deutsche Oper Berlin, further roles include Gilda/Rigoletto, Sophie/Der Rosenkavalier and Konstanze/Die Entführung. Recitals include chamber music and lieder with cellist Jessica Kuhn and pianist Anna Magdalena Kokits in the south of Germany and future plans UK recitals for Oxford Lieder with Panaretos Kyriatzidis throughout 2016/17.
A versatile musician and joint winner of the Gerald Moore Award for 2014, Panaretos Kiriatzidis recently won first prize at the Oxford Lieder Young Artist Platform 2016. He has a particular interest in contemporary music and collaborative performance, which has taken him to various venues across Europe.
Panaretos holds a Postgraduate Artist Diploma and a Masters degree with Distinction from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, where he was tutored by Martino Tirimo and Philip Fowke, with the kind support of the TCM and Leverhulme Trusts. During his time at Trinity Laban Panaretos has been a semi-finalist at the Jaques Samuel Intercollegiate Piano Competition, performed Stravinsky's Concerto for Piano and Wind Instruments with the Trinity Laban Wind Orchestra and won first prize in The English Song Competition (with Julia Weatherley), The Elisabeth Schumann Lieder Competition (with Erika Mädi-Jones), Il Circolo Solo Piano Competition, The Leonard Smith & Felicity Young Duo Competition (with cellist Miriam Wakeling) and The Cavatina Chamber Music Competition (with the Bedriska Trio). He has also received the David Gosling Prize, awarded for excellence in accompaniment, and the John Thompson Prize for chamber music.