Agency news

Clare McCaldin

Clare performing Messiah at Worcester Cathedral

Following a change of management, I’m delighted to confirm that I will be on the roster of Ann Ferrier Artists, effective from 1 October 2018. I wish Jill Davies all the best in her new undertakings and look forward to working with Ann.

For a list of my current concert repertoire click here.

Ann can be contacted at [email protected]

 

 

 

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ for Mary’s Hand

We’ve had the reviews for Mary’s Hand in London. I am thrilled to get five stars in The Independent – my first review in a national newspaper.

Writing for The Independent, Alexandra Coghlan said, “Elegant, thoughtful, current without being gimmicky and immaculately presented, Mary’s Hand is a 70-minute rebuke to the UK’s major opera companies.

At the centre of it all, holding the stage with girlish, flickering fingers and a pitiless thrust of the chin is mezzo-soprano Clare McCaldin… an outstanding singing-actress.”

mary's hand

You can read the rest of that review here and a digest of all the reviews on McCaldin Arts.

Mary triumphant

The whirlwind of activity that always precedes a new show is finally abating and I’ve been able to step back today and look at what I and my team at McCaldin Arts have achieved with Mary’s Hand. It has been the most fantastic experience and I am totally thrilled with it.

Firstly, I owe huge thanks to the team that has made the piece with me – Di Sherlock, Martin Bussey, Andie Scott and Sophie Meyer. Mary’s Hand works on many levels and its success is in large part due to the balance of musical, textual and design elements that has been achieved through a genuinely collaborative exchange of ideas and critical process. 

The decision to make another one-woman show after Vivienne was not a foregone conclusion. However, Mary’s Hand naturally builds on that show’s success, not least my interest in revisiting the stories of historical women with blurry or dark reputations.  In addition, my interest in setting myself development challenges as a performer has been brilliantly answered in Mary’s Hand, thanks to our collective insistence on refining the piece to its best.

Thank-yous are also due to Tête á Tête for programming a third McCaldin Arts production in its Opera Festival – my progress as a maker of new work is closely linked to TaT’s support and encouragement. My thanks, too, to the clergy of St Paul’s Knightsbridge, which provided rehearsal space and where we ran Mary’s Hand in its first draft.  The Church of the Holy Cross warmly welcomed us for the August performances and we are delighted to have made new friends in our local King’s Cross area.

The biggest thank you of all is to Cheyney Kent, who not only curates McCaldin Arts’ online presence, but provides behind the scenes support at every turn. Without him Mary’s Hand simply would not have made it to the stage at all.

Mary’s Hand premieres

Clare McCaldin as Mary 1

Photo: Robert Workman

After an intense year of work, the premiere of Mary’s Hand is approaching fast. The first performance is in Chester on 21 June, with London performances on 1 & 2 August. Ticket information for all dates is here.

We have some fantastic publicity photographs of the finished costume (left.) This was completed with funds crowdfunded from our supporters, to whom much thanks. The video below introduces some of the key creatives on the team and footage of our try-out in April 2018 with the costume still in its partially-finished state. The experience of running the show with the three instrumentalists and an invited audience was of enormous help to us in making final adjustments to our work before the premiere.

You can discover more about the project at McCaldin Arts. You can download and read Di Sherlock’s libretto for Mary’s Hand here and read an interview with our composer Martin Bussey here. 

 

 

 

Allison Cook

clare mccaldin podcast

I work on all kinds of great projects, some of which I’m invited to join and some which I have developed myself with colleagues. However, because all the preliminary work goes on behind the scenes you won’t always get to hear about this process. So, armed with my trusty iPhone, I’ve taken to capturing conversations with friends and colleagues about all sorts of interesting projects, to share with you, the interested listener.

This week I talk to mezzo-soprano Allison Cook, who recently appeared in the Royal Opera’s new production of From The House Of The Dead and who will soon return to London for a more significant role.

Lucy Stevens on Ethel Smyth and Grasp The Nettle

clare mccaldin podcast

I work on all kinds of great projects, some of which I’m invited to join and some which I have developed myself with colleagues. However, because all the preliminary work goes on behind the scenes you won’t always get to hear about this process. So, armed with my trusty iPhone, I’ve taken to capturing conversations with friends and colleagues about all sorts of interesting projects, to share with you, the interested listener.

In this episode I talk to contralto Lucy Stevens about her current one-woman show Grasp The Nettle, narrating the life and work of early 20th century composer and womens rights pioneer Ethel Smyth. We also took a moment to compare notes on what’s involved in putting together a small show and trying to take it on tour.

Daniel Goode

clare mccaldin podcast

I work on all kinds of great projects, some of which I’m invited to join and some which I have developed myself with colleagues. However, because all the preliminary work goes on behind the scenes you won’t always get to hear about this process. So, armed with my trusty iPhone, I’ve taken to capturing conversations with friends and colleagues about all sorts of interesting projects, to share with you, the interested listener.

This week I talk to the actor Daniel Goode. Dan is appearing in a touring production of Great Expectations, so I had a chance to catch up with him ahead of an appearance at Richmond Theatre. We discuss singing and acting, and why these two disciplines overlap for him; we also talk about his other interests and the work he does as an advocate for creative individuals in the craft industry with his company Making Goode.

Tales From Backstage Podcasts for 2018

clare mccaldin podcastThroughout 2016 I spoke with a number of my colleagues about their work. Initially speaking with people wrangling various animals at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, I quickly opened the discussion up to other musicians and artistic practitioners that I know. These discussions, edited down to 10-15 min podcasts – which I called Tales From Backstage – were good fun and full of interesting stories and insights.

Then, at the beginning of this year, I appeared on Soho Radio with some other artists (I had come on to talk about my show Over My Shoulder, concerning a famous daughter of Soho, Jessie Matthews). The experience of talking with other artists reminded me how stimulating and revealing these discussions can be. Consequently, I decided to revisit the podcast series and to try and think of other colleagues who might want to talk about their work and experiences. I’m really pleased that my first few emails were replied to with enthusiasm!

Here, then, is a new series of podcasts. I have already started, by talking to the irrepressible soprano Natalie Raybould the day before her performance of Pierrot Lunaire at the Guards Chapel on 27 February. The podcast I’m publishing today is a chat with the artistic polymath Kerry Andrew a week or two ahead of the release of her new album with her band You Are Wolf.

All podcasts can be heard via claremccaldin.com/podcast, or on iTunes, Mixcloud, or any other podcast player (like PlayerFM) with a good RSS feed. 

Kerry Andrew

clare mccaldin podcast

I work on all kinds of great projects, some of which I’m invited to join and some which I have developed myself with colleagues. However, because all the preliminary work goes on behind the scenes you won’t always get to hear about this process. So, armed with my trusty iPhone, I’ve taken to capturing conversations with friends and colleagues about all sorts of interesting projects, to share with you, the interested listener.

In this episode I talk to Kerry Andrew, a composer, performer, broadcaster, writer and cartoon character (!) about her many creative outlets and influences. We recorded this interview in a lively South London café, so the sound can get a bit cluttered sometimes; we’ve tried to clean it up a bit so you can hear everything that Kerry has to say!

Natalie Raybould on Pierrot Lunaire

clare mccaldin podcast

I work on all kinds of great projects, some of which I’m invited to join and some which I have developed myself with colleagues. However, because all the preliminary work goes on behind the scenes you won’t always get to hear about this process. So, armed with my trusty iPhone, I’ve taken to capturing conversations with friends and colleagues about all sorts of interesting projects, to share with you, the interested listener.

In this podcast I talk to soprano Natalie Raybould, who is preparing to perform Arnold Schönberg’s celebrated Pierrot Lunaire, a 20th century masterpiece she has tackled more than thirty times. Bunkered in a busy South London café during snowfall, Natalie and I discuss Pierrot, Sprechstimme, and her other current work .