British mezzo-soprano, Anna Elizabeth Cooper is currently studying at the Royal College of Music International Opera Studio supported by the Stephen Catto Memorial fund and the il Circle trust and Rosehill Theatre. She previously gained a Master’s Degree with Distinction at the Royal College of Music, supported by a scholarship from the Soiree D’Or Committee, Sir Richard Stapley Educational Trust, RCM Study award, Yorkshire Ladies Council of Education and the Josephine Baker Trust. Now under the tutelage of renowned soprano, Amanda Roocroft, Anna previously studied with Mary Plazas at the Royal Northern College of Music where she gained her Bachelor of Music degree with First Class Honours.
Originally from Cumbria, Rosehill Theatre in Whitehaven are supporting Anna as a ‘Rising Star’ during her Artistic Diploma at RCM offering her lots of performance opportunities. Anna was recently featured on BBC Radio Cumbria for her concert at Rosehill that was trying to bring opera to a wider audience. She sang operatic and musical theatre pieces whilst the audience dined in the restaurant. Breaking formal boundaries Anna also talked about the pieces and offered funny anecdotes alongside the programme. Anna also joined accompanist Anna Tilbrook this December to perform at Rosehill.
At the Royal College of Music International Opera School, Anna performed the role of Lisetta in Haydn’s il mondo della luna this autumn and the role of Dinah in Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti this summer. Previously to this she performed the role of Lady Deborah in Offenbach’s Robinson Crusoe and Cherubino in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro which was directed by Sir Thomas Allen. In 2018, Anna performed the title role of Amira in the premiere of Joe Kiely’s opera ‘Amira’ as part of ‘The Modern Prometheus’ project in collaboration with the Tête à Tête and directed by Bill Bankes-Jones. Last summer Anna sang the role of Orlofsky in Berlin Opera Academy’s production of Die Fledermaus. Anna will be performing the role of Conception in RCM’s production of L’heure Espagnole this spring 2020.
Other professional engagements include contracts as a soloist and ensemble member with The Thursford Christmas Spectacular, as well as being a cast member of the National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company’s UK tour in 2016 and 2017, as a principal, covering other principal roles and performing as a member of the ensemble.
During her time at both conservatoires, Anna performed in masterclasses for Alice Coote, Sarah Connolly, Louise Winters, Sally Burgess and Sir John Tomlinson. In addition, she had the opportunity to be mentored by accompanists, Roger Vignoles, Anthony Spiri and Simon Leppar. She has also worked with internationally renowned conductors including Lionel Friend, Sir Mark Elder, Peter Welwyn, Michael Lloyd and Alexander Crowe.
Operatic roles include Sepp, Jay, Chief Hen and Innkeeper’s wife (cover) in The Cunning Little Vixen (RCMIOS), Kate in Pirates of Penzance (National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company), Melissa in Princess Ida (National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company), Peep Bo (cover) in Mikado (National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company), Edith (cover) in Pirates of Penzance (National Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company), Sesto in Giulio Cesare (RCMIOS Opera excerpts), Dorabella in Cosi fan Tutte (RCMIOS Opera excerpts), Olga in Eugene Onegin (RCMIOS Opera excerpts), Mirinda in L’Ormindo (RCMIOS Opera excerpts), Ramiro in La Finta Giardinera (RNCM Opera excerpts), Dorabella in Cosi fan Tutte (RNCM Opera excerpts), Louise in La Vie Parisienne (RNCM Opera excerpts), Hansel in Hansel and Gretel (RNCM Opera excerpts) and Louise in Il Matrimonio Segreto (RNCM Opera excerpts).
Performing the role of Hansel in RNCM Opera scenes, Stefan Janski (Director of opera) claimed:
“Outstanding technical command and use of technique in the service of the interpretation of character, text and music. Entirely formed with an excellent, strong, performance personality; professional artist.” Stefan Janski, Director of Opera, RNCM.
On the concert platform most recently, Anna performed as a soloist with the Royal Philharmonic orchestra at Cadogan Hall in their Myths and Fairytales series. She also performed in a large scale performance of Verdi’s Requiem at De Montfort Hall in Leicestershire. She has regularly performed with choral societies and orchestras that have enabled her to tour the UK, Europe and Canada. Anna has appeared at venues such as Portsmouth Cathedral, Ely Cathedral, National Portrait Gallery, Bridgewater Hall and the Royal Albert Hall. Her recent solo oratorio appearances have included Verdi’sRequiem, Haydn’s Nelson Mass, Bach’s B minor mass, Mozart’s Requiem, Bach’s Mass in G, Dvorak’sMass in D, Mozart’sCoronationMass, Janacek’s The Diary of One Who Disappeared, Poulenc’s Gloriaand Vivaldi’s Gloria, Vaughan Williams’ Sea Symphonyand Parry’s Magnificat.
Aside from singing, Anna was also awarded the Leverhulme Music Mentoring Trust Fund Award for her work with young adults having choreographed, directed, and coached music and dance projects around Manchester. Her dancing experience led the way to further professional engagements, recently performing the solo dancer role of Anna II in Kurt Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins. This was performed with the Hallé Orchestra, led by Sir Mark Elder at the Bridgewater Hall.
“Anna Cooper (studying opera at the RNCM) gave a terrific performance as the dancer alter ego, Anna II.” Robert Beale, Manchester Evening News
“Anna Cooper danced with great elegance and controlled energy even in the grittiest corners.” Rohan Shotton from Bach track