De Souza saves day for Yetholm Sinfonia

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BRAZILIAN singer Michel de Souza has come to the rescue of Yetholm Sinfonia this Saturday.

Kelso Old Parish Church was due to see the return of Dominic Barberi, who thrilled the venue last autumn.

Unfortunately the baritone singer has been struck down with an illness, but de Souza has stepped in to sing the programme exactly as advertised.

Born in Petropolis, Brazil, de Souza recently completed a master’s degree in opera with distinction at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama.

He started singing as a boy, and graduated as an organist at the school of music in the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, where he also continued to study singing.

He is currently an emerging artist with Scottish Opera, with which he has recently sung in Richard Strauss’s Intermezzo and Verdi’s Otello.

Recently he sang Vaughan Williams’s Serenade to Music with the BBC Symphony Orchestra in the Proms at the Royal Albert Hall.

Sinfonia conductor Geoffrey Emerson said: “The concert starts with Beethoven’s noble but rarely played overture The Consecration of the House, after which Michel sings Vaughan Williams’ Five Mystical Songs to words by the 17th century divine George Herbert.

“After the interval will come a great rarity, Ravel’s very last composition, his Three Songs, Don Quixote to Dulcinea, and to round off the evening, Gounod’s first symphony, which is unexpectedly jolly, and not at all like his opera Faust.”

Tickets are priced at £8 and are on sale in Kelso at Latimer’s Book Shop, Oven Wynd and Hector Innes Photography, or phone 01573 420279.