The art of Italian singing in three hundred years of repertoire.


Resident: £320 Non-Resident: £232 (25% off for under 27s) Code: 21/R35

Booking for Members opens at 9am on Friday 14 May 2021. 

Non-Member and online booking opens at 9am on Friday 18 June 2021. 

For details on how to become a Member to take advantage of early booking, see here.

What is the course about?

Although the term bel canto (beautiful song), has long been associated with the works of such Romantic masters as Rossini, Bellini and Donizetti, the term was only invented in the later nineteenth-century. The tradition of beautiful Italian singing, the rhetorical delivery of text combined with uttermost flexibility of expression and decorative cantabile, is, however, at once much older and much newer, extending from the experimental monodies of the Florentine Camerata and such seminal figures as Caccini, the operas of Monteverdi and Cavalli, the works of Handel and his illustrious contemporaries to the verismo outpourings of Puccini, Mascagni and Leoncavallo. This course will explore this great tradition textually, technically and interpretatively in equal measure, drawing on Dr Clapton’s many years of experience as a singer, voice teacher, and writer on music. Participants should bring along two or three prepared pieces to work on.

What will we cover?

Vocal technique, style, interpretation, language.

What will we accomplish?

An improvement in all aspects of participants’ performance and knowledge of this repertoire.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

Confident, Skilful

How will the course be taught, and will any preparation be required?

Individual sessions in a class situation.

Tutor guidance and feedback will be given throughout. Questions welcome from all participants.

Preparation: all participants should prepare at least three pieces of appropriate music.

Will music be provided in advance of the course?

Participants are requested to bring their own music, and to bring copies for the course tutors. Helpful resources: IMSLP (imslp.org) has a wide range of parts and scores. Benslow Music members may be able to hire music from our library.

Is there anything I need to bring?

Don’t forget your music, and be as well prepared as possible.

What previous participants said about this course…

“Thanks to Nicholas and Gavin for the advice, their patience and good humour. Time was effectively spent for everybody, good organisation and great fun!”

“Very skilled and knowledgeable tutors able to pick up and help in detail with technical problems.”

“It is intensive and you need to be able to stay focussed to get the best out of it.”