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Ruth Massey (Mezzo-soprano)

Born: Nottinghamshire, England

The English mezzo-soprano, Ruth Massey, studied at Worksop College, Nottinghamshire (1990-1995). She graduated with MA degree in Law from the University of Cambridge (1996-1999), where she was a Choral Scholar at Clare College and studied singing with David Lowe and Margaret Humphrey-Clark. She has taken part in master-classes with Diane Forlano and Mark Wildman.

Ruth Massey has performed as a soloist with many ensembles, including the New Cambridge Singers, the Bach Society and the Cambridge Baroque Ensemble. She now (as of 2003) works regularly with a number of professional groups, including The Tallis Scholars (Director: Peter Phillips), BBC Singers, Polyphony (Director: Stephen Layton), the Young Professionals of London and the Cambridge Singers (Director: John Rutter). Alongside a busy solo schedule, she performs with many of the UK's foremost consorts, from medieval and renaissance specialists The Clerks and Alamire to the highly acclaimed contemporary music ensemble EXAUDI.

Concert performances in London include W.A. Mozart's Vesperae Solennes de Confessore (Solemn Vespers) at The Barbican with The Sixteen (Director: Harry Christophers), Sergei Rachmaninov's Vespers at Cadogan Hall with Retrospect Ensemble (Director: Matthew Halls), Dietrich Buxtehude's seven-cantata cycle Membra Jesu Nostri at Kings Place with The Sixteen (Director: Harry Christophers), Johannes Brahms' Neue Liebeslieder-Walze at the Wigmore Hall with The King's Consort (Director: Robert King), Benjamin Britten's Ceremony of Carols in the City of London Festival with Tenebrae (Director: Nigel Short), Haydn's Creation at the BBC Proms 2009 with Gabrieli Consort & Players (Director: Paul McCreesh), and J.S. Bach's Cantata BWV 132 at Bart's Hospital as part of the City of London Sinfonia's 2010 Winter Festival. Further afield in the UK, highlights include an acclaimed performance in 2009 of J.S. Bach's Cantatas BWV 9 and BWV 146 at the Edinburgh Festival, again with Harry Christophers, W.A. Mozart's Requiem at the Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford, Maurice Duruflé's Requiem at King's College Chapel, Cambridge and J. Brahms' Sehnsucht in the Barbican. She joined Wokingham Choral Society at Eton College School Hall on March 30, 2003 performing Antonio Vivaldi's Gloria, G.F. Handel's Coronation Anthems (including Zadok the Priest) and G.F. Handel's Ode on St. Cecilia's Day.

Much of Ruth Massey's work takes her to the Continent, the USA, Canada, Iceland, Bulgaria and Madeira, with recent performances including Haydn's Harmoniemesse at the Festival de Musique de La Chaise Dieu, France with Gabrieli Consort & Players (Director: Paul McCreesh), George Frideric Handel's Dixit Dominus at Santa Maria di Montesanto, Rome, Italy (the church where this majestic piece was first performed in 1707) with Gabrieli Consort & Players (Director: Paul McCreesh), and Ockeghem's Missa Prolationum in the Amsterdam Conzertgebouw, The Netherlands with The Clerks (Director: Edward Wickham).

Operatic roles to date include Orindo in G.F. Handel's Admeto, Cherubino in W.A. Mozart's Marriage of Figaro, Witch in Alexander Goehr's Tryptych and Medoro in G.F. Handel's Orlando.

As the latest additions to Ruth Massey's wide and varied discography, 2008-2009 saw the release of G.F. Handel's Dixit Dominus with Harry Christophers and The Sixteen (Coro, 2009), W.A. Mozart's Solemn Vespers with The Sixteen (Coro, 2008), and a world premiere recording of G.F. Handel's Parnasso in Festa (Hyperion, 2008) with The King's Consort (Director: Matthew Halls). She can also be heard on many award-winning recordings as a member of various groups, including Polyphony (Director: Stephen Layton) and EXAUDI.

Future engagements include Arvo Pärt's Stabat Mater at the Wigmore with EXAUDI and Endymion, performances of Felix Mendelssohn's Elijah in Guildford Cathedral and Eton College Chapel, and Edward Elgar's Dream of Gerontius in London.

Since November 2014, Ruth Masssey is Director of Southwell Music Festival. In addition, she has worked as Senior Editor at Cavendish Publishing Ltd (1999-2004); Choral & Vocal Editor at Faber Music Ltd in London (2007-May 2010); Choral Consultant at Faber Music Ltd (2010-2013). Since 2004, she works as Freelance Editor and Project Manager (Social Sciences, Law and General Interest; Clients include: Amazon, Past and Present, Hart Publishing, University of London International Programmes, Oxford University Press, Debrett's). She currently lives in Drayton, Nottinghamshire.|

Source: Admiré Website; Wokingham Choral Society Website; Ruth Massey profiles ojn LinkedIn & Facebook
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (February 2017)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Stephen Layton


Member of Polyphony:
V-1 (2012):
BWV 245

Links to other Sites

Ruth Massey - Mezzo-Soprano (Admiré)
Ruth Massey Mezzo-Soprano (Wokingham Choral Society)

Ruth Massey on Facebook
Ruth Massey on LinkedIn

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Last update: Monday, May 29, 2017 10:46