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International Friends

The Grange Festival has been travelling abroad: Hong Kong and New York

We have set up the Hong Kong Friends of The Grange Festival, and are doing the same in the USA, with The American Friends of The Grange Festival. Both are exciting initiatives with two-way implications of mutual assistance and support.

A few hours after one of the worst typhoons in living memory, we gave a reception in the Hong Kong Club, opened in its present location by Phillip Haddon-Cave our Chairman's illustrious father. Four young opera singers entertained the gathering and a successful launch was achieved in high spirits. The following day, Michael Chance held a masterclass in the Performing Arts Centre organised by the director of voice there, Nancy Yeung. She and Michael sang together ten years ago in the first performances of Somtow Sucharitkul's new opera Ayodhya in Bangkok.

Our links with Hong Kong are strong. We have established links with Rumiko Hasegawa's visionary project More Than Musical, which brings opera to new audiences, and look forward to hosting many of our Hong Kong Friends - as well as Rumiko's company - on one of their future visits to the UK.

In April 2019, a block away from the Metropolitan Museum, The Grange Festival held a rip-roaring reception in a majestic private house filled with a famously important porcelain collection. We are happy to report that 75 or so guests and three young singers had a high old time and no porcelain was disturbed. In the subsequent days, the process to establish our own not-for-profit charity got underway and Michael auditioned 25 young singers from New York, Chicago, Philadelphia and Houston.

These initiatives are about finding support for The Grange Festival in two key international locations, but also about using the expertise of our singers, coaches and repetiteurs to give help where it is needed and requested.

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Our Festival Friends ensure the success of each festival and are essential to sustaining the high quality of opera at The Grange.