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The Glenarm Festival of Voice

The Glenarm Festival of Voice is our annual celebration of singing which takes place in the historic coastal village of Glenarm, Co. Antrim.

The festival features public recitals and events, including three concerts in partnership with and broadcast by BBC Radio 3 and culminates in a vocal competition hosted by Northern Ireland Opera Patron and BBC Radio 3 presenter Sean Rafferty. The 12th Glenarm Festival of Voice will take place from August 26th to August 28th 2022. Tickets for all events are now available via this link.

BBC Radio 3 Recitals

2022’s BBC Radio 3 recitals will feature soprano Soraya Mafi, tenor Alessandro Fisher and baritone James Newby, with pianist Simon Lepper. The theme this year is Celebration! We’re delighted to be returning to Glenarm again – the last two Festivals of Voice have taken place in Belfast due to the pandemic. This year we’ll be able to have live audiences again at these recitals. Tickets are free but must be booked in advance via this link.

Vocal Competition

Singers from applicants across Ireland are chosen after submitting a recording and they spend four days working with top opera and song professionals including former Director of the National Opera Studio, Kathryn Harries, Simon Lepper, and Dr Ingrid Surgenor.

The singers and pianists involved with the Glenarm Festival of Voice competition benefit from a highly focused experience and the opportunity to perform and make contacts with opera professionals. The winner of the competition is awarded the Deborah Voigt Opera Prize, and becomes the NI Opera Young Opera Voice for that year, and the winner of the Audience Prize is decided by the audience’s votes. In 2021 for the first time there was a Song Prize, supported by The Priests Charitable Trust and presented by Fr Eugene O’Hagan of The Priests.

Find out all about the five finalists for 2022 and the Peter Rankin piano intern for 2022 in the column on the left.

The Festival of Voice Finalists, 2022

The Peter Rankin Piano Internship is offered as part of the festival and each year a young pianist is chosen to work closely with the coaches and play for rehearsals and during the Irish song section of the competition finale.  The Peter Rankin Piano Intern for 2022 is Doireann O’Carroll.

We are grateful for the support of our Festival Patrons, the Earl and Countess of Antrim.

Outreach Programme

Outreach activities in the form of creative and musical workshops are an integral part of the Festival, with the ‘Singing Explorers’ having been a feature of the festival for a number of years. In 2022 we’ll be bringing brand new outreach events to Glenarm which will run on the Saturday and Sunday afternoons in a location kindly lent to us by Glenarm Castle. Find out more in this link.

We’re delighted to be able to return to The Londonderry Arms in Carnlough this year, after two years away, for our annual Saturday afternoon performance as part of the Festival. 2021 Festival of Voice winner Ellen Mawhinney will be performing art songs from 3-4pm.

New Vice Patron of the Festival of Voice for 2022

This year the Festival welcomes a new Vice Patron, Newry baritone Ben McAteer.

Ben was the first winner of the Glenarm Festival of Voice vocal competition in 2010. He is an in-demand opera singer with companies across the UK and Europe and has, since his win in 2010, returned to perform at the festival as a BBC Radio 3 Recitalist. Find out more here.

Book your tickets for all events at The 12th Glenarm Festival of Voice by clicking here.

Click through our gallery below to see some images from previous Festivals over the last ten years.