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6 September, 1-2pm

From Old to New: Ulster Scots Songs

An Outreach Week Event

From Old to New: Ulster Scots Songs

Come along to the Grand Opera House and enjoy a free lunchtime recital in the Studio by mezzo-soprano Carolyn Dobbin exploring how Ulster Scots song has changed over time, from folk song evolving into classical art song and looking at folk song influences in contemporary song.

This event is part of Northern Ireland Opera’s Outreach Week, featuring free events in the beautiful and historic Grand Opera House to introduce our local community to opera, song and creative skills which we use to help bring our performances to life.  Tickets are free but must be pre-booked via the link below.

Watch Carolyn performing ‘The Blue Hills’ by Hamilton Harty, filmed as part of our Northern Songs series at Dunluce Castle.

You can find out about all the other free activities for Outreach Week via this link – come along and see what you think! Outreach Week’s activities are made possible by funding from the Garfield Weston Foundation and the Arts Council NI

Carolyn Dobbin

Northern Irish mezzo-soprano and Samling Scholar, Carolyn began her career as a teacher of Art and Design before commencing the Opera course at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. Carolyn was Associate Artist at Welsh National Opera in 2010-11 and spent two years at Luzern Theatre , Switzerland in 2012-2014. She has performed extensively in opera, oratorio and in solo recitals, including appearances at the Royal Opera House Linbury Theatre, NI opera, English National Opera, Grange Park Opera, Dorset Opera, Opera Holland Park, Luzerner theatre (contract) Stadttheater Bern, and RTVE madrid and the Royal Albert Hall.

She has performed the roles of Susuki, Orlofsky, Annio, Penelope, Bradamante, Juno, Polina, Hannah, Irene, Meg Page, Mistress Quickly, Dritte Dame, Lucretia, Amastre, Octavia, Nicklausse, Magdalena, Dorabella, Tisbe, Charlotte, Teodata, Flora, Annina, Concepcion, Emilia, Lisetta, Maddalena, Fatima, Carmen, Scipio, Idamante and Angelina. 

She recorded the role of Madeleine in R. Loders rare opera ‘Raymond and Agnes’  with Richard Bonynge, the role of The Queen in Ethel Smythes ‘Fete Gallant’ for Retrospect Opera and the role of Ludwina in ‘Fraulein Bixel und Herr Glück’ in Luzern. She also released a solo CD ‘ Caleno’with Delphian Records and pianist Iain Burnside on songs by composers from Northern Ireland 2018 and has appeared on BBC Radio 3 and BBC TV. She set up the Northern Irish Song Project which aims to collect and record many forgotten songs by N Irish composers and new song cycles by current composers.

Recently she sang the role of Madam Popova in The Bear, Mary in Wagners Der fliegende Holländer, performed Smeton in Anna Bolena for Longborough Festival Opera, Fenena in Nabucco and Alisa in Lucia di Lammermoor for Dorset Opera Festival, Mrs Peachum in Mrs Peachum school for lovers, The Witch in Hansel and Gretel for Irish National Opera and Jackie in Message for Marty for Irish National Opera and was part of ‘Old Friends and Other Days’, the award-winning film on composer W V Wallace by NI Opera.

In 2022/3/4 she will perform Siegrune in Wagner’s Walküre for LFO, perform in a newly written opera by Conor Mitchell, perform Handels Alexanders Feast with the new orchestra Le Foyer des Artists, she will perform for Ulster Touring Opera, have a BBC recording, sing the role of Cuniza in Verdi’s first opera Oberto in central London for COG, perform the role Cornelia in Handels Julius Caesar and sing the role of Mary in Der fliegende Holländer with Sir Bryn Terfel at Grange Park Opera.


Carolyn Dobbin

Tristan Russcher