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Project information

Rising Stars of the Enlightenment

A new mentoring programme for brilliant young vocal talent as part of the OAE's broader commitment to nurturing the next generation of performing artists. A cohort of eight young singers, who will take the stage with the OAE and feature prominently both in the UK and on international tours.

October 2017 - September 2018

Charity information: Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment logo
  • Need


    It is becoming increasingly harder for young singers to enter into the professional industry. As more students graduate from music colleges, the opportunities available are becoming harder to find. This results in young professionals being unable to find consistent, well paid work, meaning they are unable to afford the high London living costs.


    Those selected to join the Rising Stars scheme will participate in a programme of workshops and performance opportunities throughout the OAE’s 2017/18 season and will work with many established singers and conductors, including Mark Padmore, William Christie, Sir Andràs Schiff, Ivor Bolton, Roderick Williams and Mary Bevan. The scheme will allow these young singers to enter into the professional industry whilst also providing further training and experience from world renowned professionals.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To give aspiring young singers the chance to launch their careers.


    » Opportunity to perform in Handel's Semele in October 2017 at the Royal Festival Hall, with some participants undertaking solo roles
    » Opportunity to participate in the OAE's Bach, the Universe and Everything series at Kings Place
    » Participation in other performances and workshops throughout the season

    What success will look like

    Success will be demonstrated through successful participation in OAE performances and experience gained from working with world-renowned performer and composers.

  • Impact


    The dividends of such a programme include a sustained investment in young singers of the next generation, the privilege of discovering new talent and of playing a pastoral role in their development, and building relationships that gladden our casting and audiences for years to come. We will demonstrate this by the continuation of the scheme over many years and by showcasing the on-going success of participants once they have completed the scheme.


    Not raising enough funds: We have a major donor championing the scheme and have applied to various Trusts and Foundations for additional funding.

    Obtaining students of a high calibre: Applicants for the 2017/18 scheme prepared a selection of solo Bach and Handel arias in preparation for a challenging two days of auditions in February, in front of a 5 strong panel including industry professionals, OAE Players and Mark Padmore.


    Donors will be sent a yearly report on the scheme from the OAE Development team which will include quotes from the Rising Stars participants. They will be invited to attend performances in which the Rising Stars will be involved and have the opportunity to meet with the participants afterwards.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £100,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £5,000 Administration Marketing & recruitment, admistration, sundy costs
      £65,000 Concert costs Cost of Rising Stars involvement in OAE concerts
      £30,000 Flagship projects Rising Stars involvement in additional vocal projects through the concert season

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Major Donor £50,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    The project will see the Rising Stars perform at various locations including as part of the OAE's prestigious Southbank Centre season, with concerts at the Royal Festival Hall and St John's Smith Square. They will also be part of an innovative series at Kings Place, a musical hub in the up and coming area around Kings Cross. Additionally, there will be opportunities to join the orchestra on tours across the UK including Basingstoke and Saffron Walden and international tours may also be possible.


    The main beneficiary of the project will be the participants of the Rising Stars programme, exceptionally talented young performers from varying backgrounds, who will be given the skills and experience necessary to progress in the professional industry. The other beneficiary will be our concert audiences and Education Workshop participators, from children to adults, who will experience authentic music making of the highest calibre from the 'stars of the future'.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The OAE is passionate about offering the next generation of performers a valuable insight into life as a professional musician, concentrating not only on performance and technique, but also on wider career development. We already run a highly successful 'OAE Experience Scheme' for orchestral musicians which includes an intensive 3 day course and involvement in OAE concerts and Education workshops throughout the year.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Mark Padmore - World Renowned British Tenor

    Mark Padmore has agreed to be Patron of the scheme. He has been involved in the audition process and will mentor the successful candidates.

    Crispin Woodhead - CEO Of The OAE

    Crispin Woodhead devised the Rising Stars scheme and was involved with the audition process. He will continue to be heavily involved with the scheme.