Hailed as ‘one to listen out for’ (The Guardian), Soprano Nardus Williams is establishing herself as one of the most exciting British singers of her generation. A former English National Opera Harewood Artist, upcoming highlights of the 2022/23 season include a return to the Glyndebourne tour as Countess Le Nozze di Figaro after resounding success this summer, and also to the festival as Adina L’elisir d’amore. She will make her house and role debut as Helena A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Opéra de Rouen Normandie, and on the concert platform, return to the Wigmore Hall, perform a programme of Handel with the Dunedin Consort, and Tippett A Child of Our Time with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Williams has recently been nominated for the Times Breakthrough Award at The South Bank Sky Arts Awards 2022.
Recent highlights for Williams include Anne Trulove The Rake’s Progress for the Glyndebourne Tour, her house debut as Mimi La Boheme for Opera Vlaanderen, Fiordiligi Cosi fan tutte for English National Opera, Countess Le Nozze di Figaro for Opera Holland Park, Mimi La Boheme for English National Opera's Drive & Live series, Ciboulette In The Market for Love for the Glyndebourne Tour, the world premiere of Dido's Ghost a co-commission with the Dunedin Consort, Mahogany Opera & The Barbican, Micaëla Carmen at English National Opera, Mimi La boheme and Donna Anna Don Giovanni for Houston Grand Opera, Armida Rinaldo (cover) and Adina L'elisir d'amore (cover) at Glyndbourne Festival Opera, Governess The Turn of the Screw for Garsington Opera (cover), the role of Martha in a new commission Wake by Giorgio Battistelli for Birmingham Opera Company directed by Graham Vick, and Countess (cover) The Marriage of Figaro for English National Opera. Further roles have included Maggie/Marjana in the world premiere of Lewis Murphy Belongings for Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Donna Elvira Don Giovanni for Opera Holland Park, Mimi La boheme and Donna Anna Don Giovanni for Houston Grand Opera and Fox in Janáček The Cunning Little Vixen at the Royal College of Music. Williams was also invited to perform with Welsh National Opera and Nevill Holt Opera.
On the concert and recital platform, recent and upcoming highlights include recitals for Oxford Lieder, Leeds Lieder, Wigmore Hall, St. John’s Smith Square, her BBC Proms debut with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Ben Glassberg, and Handel’s Messiah at King’s Place and English National Opera.
Williams was a member of the Houston Opera Studio for the 2018/19 season and is a former Jerwood Young Artist at Glyndebourne. Williams trained at the International Opera School at the Royal College of Music where she was the sole recipient of the prestigious Kiri Te Kanawa Scholarship. Other awards and prizes include the Maureen Lehane Vocal Awards First Prize and Audience Prize (2016); Williams was also a finalist in the 2018 Kathleen Ferrier Competition.
Helena A Midsummer Night’s Dream*
Governess The Turn of the Screw*
Fox The Cunning Little Vixen
Fiordiligi Così fan tutte*
Pamina Die Zauberflöte
Donna Elvira Don Giovanni
Donna Anna Don Giovanni*
Countess Le Nozze di Figaro*
Waswa The Last King of Scotland
Dido Dido and Aeneas
Mimí La bohème*
Magda La Rondine
Milliner Der Rosenkavalier
Just as impressive was Nardus Williams as Donna Elvira. She has a rich creamy, elegant voice and seemed to be singing Donna Elvira fully formed…. this was indeed a very complete and ultimately moving performance.
British soprano Nardus Williams is another young singer to watch, making her role and house debut as Micaëla. Williams’ strong combination of voice and acting at full tilt was a delight to witness, giving what can be a pallid role some well-deserved life.
[Williams] presented a challenging programme which gave ample opportunity for us to appreciate her superbly controlled, sensuous soprano which has sheen and shimmer as well as real focus of tone.