The English baritone, Mark Rowlinson, was a choral scholar at Oxford. He spent the 1970's as a singer based in London and was at various times a member of the choirs of Brompton Oratory and Westminster Abbey. He made his debut at London's Royal Festival Hall as early as 1973, was a soloist with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Hallé Orchestra, and New Philharmonia Orchestra both in concert and on record, and gave a number of live BBC song recitals. Perhaps the high spot of his London career was to be chosen as the baritone soloist for the performance of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem given as the composer's London memorial concert. He also dines out in having sung in Duke Ellington's last concert in the UK, albeit in the backing group!
Mark Rowlinson spent the next 20 years as a Music Producer for the BBC based in Manchester, during which time he produced some 3,000 programmes and worked with a great many of the world's finest musicians. Yet he continued to sing during this time, giving recitals at Aldeburgh, the York Early Music Festival, in Milan, Amsterdam and The Hague, and occasionally on BBC Radio 3. He was honoured to be invited by the composer Sir Peter Maxwell Davies to take a role in his opera Resurrection which was performed as P.M. Davies's 60th birthday concert, with the BBC Philharmonic, conducted by the composer, and recorded for CD. A minor speaking part (five words!) in Paul Hindemith's opera Sancta Susanna led to appearances with the BBC Philharmonic at the Bridgewater Hall, Barbican and at the Henry Wood Proms, as well as on CD.
As a member of the New London Consort Mark Rowlinson has performed early music in many of Europeís most prestigious festivals, as well as on disc. In 2004 he was a soloist in Paris, Umbria, Athens, Philadelphia, Chicago and San Francisco. In June 2005 he participated in performances of J.S. Bachís Johannes-Passion (BWV 245) with the New London Consort conducted by Philip Pickett at the Israel Festival Jerusalem. A CD of contemporary English song was released, to warm critical acclaim.
During 2007 performances of Monteverdiís Orfeo with the New London Consort took Mark Rowlinson to Israel, Mexico, Spain, Luxembourg, Poland and the Netherlands. Other highlights of the year included performances of J.S. Bachís St John Passion (BWV 245) at Kingís College, Cambridge, Edward Elgarís Dream of Gerontius in York Minster, Verdi Requiem at Manchester University and the Bridgewater Hall, and E. Elgarís Apostles at Kingís College, Cambridge.
2008 sees performances of Purcellís Indian Queen and Dido and Aeneas with the New London Consort, J.S. Bachís St Matthew Passion (BWV 244) at Kingís College, Cambridge and Coventry Cathedrals, and J.S. Bach's St John Passion (BWV 245) at Manchester and Blackburn Cathedrals. Of particular interest is a performance of Felix Mendelssohnís Elijah in Birmingham Town Hall with the Birmingham Festival Choral Society, who gave the first performance of Elijah, conducted by F. Mendelssohn himself in this very building.