Gramophone: CCM Prof. Stuart Skelton featured in Recording of the Year

The recording of "Peter Grimes" also won the opera category in the Classical Music Awards 2021

UC College-Conservatory of Music Professor of Voice Stuart Skelton is featured in Gramophone's Classical Music Awards Recording of the Year and Opera Recording of the Year. The recording of Benjamin Britten's Peter Grimes showcases acclaimed soloists performing with the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and Choirs, led by conductor Edward Gardner.

Stuart Skelton accepts Gramophone's 2021 Recording of the Year Award for Benjamin Britten's "Peter Grimes."

Stuart Skelton accepts Gramophone's 2021 Recording of the Year Award for Benjamin Britten's "Peter Grimes."

The award winners were announced in a streamed ceremony on Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2021, which is available to watch on Gramophone's websiteYouTube and Facebook channels, and on medici.tv.

The recording of Britten's Peter Grimes features long-time collaborators Gardner and Skelton (MM Voice, ’95). Recorded in late 2019 in Bergen, Norway, and released on the Chandos label in 2020, Gramophone’s review hailed the "well-chosen" choice of soloists. Performers include Skelton (Grimes), Erin Wall (Ellen), Roderick Williams (Balstrode), Susan Bickley (Auntie), Catherine Wyn-Rogers (Mrs. Sedley), Robert Murray (Bob Boles), James Gilchrist (Horace Adams), Marcus Farnsworth (Ned Keene) and the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and Choirs. Learn more about the recording.

Skelton was recently dubbed "one of the world's most exciting singers" in an interview with the Guardian. The heldentenor recently performed as the featured soloist in the Last Night at the Proms with the BBC Symphony Orchestra on Sept. 11, 2021 in London’s Royal Albert Hall.

The program included a variety of repertoire, including Wagner selections which Skelton states, “[are] the meat of [his] career.” Acclaimed for his epic Wagner roles, Skelton has performed with the Metropolitan Opera, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony and more. His voice type, “...tends to be a feature of German romantic repertoire – especially Wagner. You have to have enough noise to come over a full orchestra for four or five hours. Singers are like athletes doing long-distance competitions,” Skelton said in the Guardian interview. 

Skelton is in his first year as a Professor in CCM's Voice program after graduating from the college in 1995. He returned in previous years to present guest artist recitals and lead master classes with students. In spring 2020, he received CCM’s Distinguished Alumni Award, which recognizes outstanding professional achievement and engagement with the college by graduates and former students. 

“I am very excited to be able to continue my performing career alongside my teaching responsibilities and I firmly believe that being able to maintain my performance calendar and my teaching will enable me to bring the immediacy of performance and integrate that with my students at CCM," Skelton said when CCM announced his faculty position. "This will allow the best practises in teaching facilities and performance – which have always been the hallmark of CCM – to be integrated into the preparation for leaving the nest and getting the craft, the art and the joy of singing onto the stage.”

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Featured image at top: Portrait of Stuart Skelton. Photo/Guðmundur Ingólfsson

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Jaime Sharp

CCM Graduate Assistant, Marketing + Communications

Jaime Sharp is a master's student studying Vocal Performance at CCM. She serves as the Vice President of the CCM Graduate Student Association and Student Liaison for the CCM DEI Committee. Jaime holds a bachelor's from the University of Michigan.