13 August 2010

Three Con-connected singers on Sunday will be vying to follow in the footsteps of two of Australia's greatest -Dame Joan Sutherland and June Bronhill.

The trio - Emma Moore, Andrew Moran and Angela Brun-Edwards - are among the eight finalists for the prestigious McDonald's Operatic Aria - a competition dating back to 1933.

Moore is a current Year 1 opera student; and Moran and Brun-Edwards are opera school graduates.

They will each sing two arias of their choice in the final at the Sydney Opera House, with the winner receiving a prize worth $43,000, including international tuition.

The competition, staged by the Sydney Eisteddfod, was introduced 77 years ago to help develop Australia's pool of young opera stars. Joan Sutherland and June Bronhill each won the prize and went on to massive international success.

The eight finalists will be supported by The Con's Symphony Orchestra, led by Maestro Imre Palló.

Emma Moore is on a "hot streak" having also recently gained a place in the finals of the Opera and Arts Support Group.

Meanwhile, Con student Rachel Bate and recent graduate Eleanor Lyons this week claimed two of the five final positions for the highly acclaimed Mathy Australian Singing Competition.

The two Sydney-based singers will join contenders from Western Australia, Northern Territory and Queensland in the final to be decided at the Sydney Opera House on 15 October.

Con teacher Maree Ryan, who guides Bate, commented: "The semi-finals were the best standard and most competitive I have heard to date in this competition. Two other students, Simon Gilkes and Morgan Pearse, and a graduate, Naomi Johns, deserve credit for reaching that stage of the competition.

"It is a wonderful result and reflects well on the work that is being done in the unit and the input of other coaches in music and language.

"It is especially rewarding coming on the back of Con students gaining seven of the twelve final places from Opera Foundation Australia."

Dean and Principal, Professor Kim Walker, said: "Everyone involved, students, graduates and Faculty can feel immensely proud of these terrific outcomes - they are very inspirational.

"We also take great delight in knowing that Con graduate Simone Easthope - coached by Maree Ryan for the past eight years - performed with distinction last week in winning the Lady Fairfax 2010 New York Scholarship."

Contact: Mick Le Moignan

Phone: 02 9351 1385

Email: 393d575e59272f37210d16232b412d1a1b512f304e602a16325c5139