Jennifer is a British born mezzo-soprano whose artistic talents blossomed at a particularly young age. She has been commended as a singer with a rare vocal timbre and unique dramatic gifts; combined with her extraordinary passion and a sparkling personality this is a singer that is able to beguile and enthral her listeners.
After studying a degree in Literature her musical talents were recognised and she took a degree in music, gaining a First Class honours. Later she received a full scholarship to study for a Master of Music, achieving distinction in her performance. Jennifer is now swiftly embarking on her exciting career as a young classical star.
Jennifer is inspired by Kathleen Ferrier, whose rich dark timbre is an evident model. Jennifer’s repertoire ranges from the baroque (Purcell and Bach) through the classical favourites (Mozart) to more recent composers such as John Cage and Paul Sarcich.
Jennifer’s teachers have included Sheila Barnes, Ameral Gunson and Rosalind Plowright OBE, she has been coached by Royal College professor Stephen Wilder, Paul Plummer and Christopher Gould and has also sung with operatic groups such as Co-Opera Company, Intimate Opera and with Birkbeck University.
Jennifer also supports and performs for many charities and has helped raise awareness for environmentally concerned issues, she is proud to be able to contribute in some small way to the efforts of Climate Change and Sustainability.
Jennifer will be performing the following arias for the ceremony:
Jaymie-Kym McMellon was born in the West Midlands and developed a passion for singing whilst at school. She studied with Elizabeth Holland and was awarded the Young Person’s Scholarship to Solihull Chandos Choir where she performed works such as Bach’s St John’s Passion and Handels’ Messiah in various venues across the West Midlands.
In addition to Chandos, she performed regularly in school in productions and was part of St George’s School Choir, where she performed in venues such as St Chad’s Cathedral and Birmingham Symphony Hall.
In 2005 her musical studies took her to Kent, to read music at Canterbury Christ Church University under Professor Grenville Hancox and studied with esteemed former Sadlers Well’s Principal Soprano, Ava June Cooper. She frequently sung in the University choirs performing both as soloist and chorister and performed in many venues around Kent.
Whilst studying for her degree she also entered competitions such as The Bromsgrove Young Musicians Platform and The Alan Parnell Singers Competition, where in 2009 she was a prize-winner. She was also winner of the Canterbury Arts Council Bursary for young persons in 2007 and was a soloist in the Canterbury Festival.
Jaymie also integrated with the local music community, which included performing as soprano soloist for The Manwood Singers, based in Sandwich, performed a variety of oratorio and operatic repertoire repertoire.
Whilst completing the final year of her degree, Jaymie also studied at Birkbeck University in London and gained the Certificate of Education in Performance Studies: Opera. Roles included Susanna from the The Marriage of Figaro andAmahl form Menotti’s opera Amahl and The Night Visitors.
Upon graduating, Jaymie successfully gained a place on the City Lit Opera Course in London. Roles included Marzellinefrom Fidelio.. Jaymie – Kym also performed in the Birmingham Conservatoire Accompanists Competition, acting as singer for friend and colleague Philip Benzinski. Jaymie – Kym is currently studying at Birmingham Conservatoire with Rita Cullis and has been involved both as a principal and chorus member of Midland Opera. Current Operatic engagements have included The Abbess in Suor Angelica and chorus in Gounod’s Faust with Midland Opera, The Gossip in Noye’s Fludde with Operamus and Chorus in Kurt Weill’s Street Scene.
She is also a singing teacher at Ruckleigh School, Solihull, many of her pupils go on to or have been offered places for various choirs across the region including Solihull Children’s Chorus, Cbso Youth Chorus and Birmingham Cathedral Choir. Since moving back to the area, Jaymie now sings with Cbso chorus and has sung as soprano soloist with Solihull Chandos Choir. She also gives frequent recitals around the local area. Future plans include further study at Associated Opera Studios in London later this year and oratorio work with Hampton Singers and working towards competitions.