Matt on Tour blog

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Matthew Wright was born in Doncasterin 1982. He trained at the Birmingham Conservatoire, and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama as a Draper Scholar on the Opera Course.

His operatic roles for Glyndebourne include A Notary in Don Pasquale and Customs Sargeant in La bohème.

He has also performed: Second Commissioner, First Officer and Thierry in Les dialogues des Carmélites ; Togno in La Spinalba ; L’Aubergiste in Chérubin (Guildhall School of Music and Drama); Pluto in Euridice (British Youth Opera); Tobit in Tobias and the Angel (Buxton Opera Festival); Faure’s Requiem (Symphony Hall with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra).

Matthew also appeared on the BBC Comic Relief show in the operatic version of the award-winning BBC comedy series ‘The Office’, playing the infamous character ‘David Brent’ under the direction of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant.

Matthew joined the Glyndebourne chorus in March this year.

8 November 2011: To beard or not beard? That is the costume………

So, I’ve just read through Thomasin’s and Paul’s blogs over the past couple of seasons and I’m wondering whether I’m up to the task. Oh well, practice makes perfect, so here goes…

The title, by the way, came to me as I was dusting off my Gillette razor, which has gradually worked its way to the back of the bathroom cupboard, imprisoned by various neurotic singer cold and flu remedies.It would be fair to say most of us baritones sport some sort of facial hair – some might say it’s compulsory – but beards definitely don’t work with eighteenth century wigs and white make up, which is what we have to wear for Don Pasquale !Needless to say the best way to get a smooth shave has become a great topic of debate in the male dressing room – and my razor has found its way back to prime place in my life.

Our first week on the road was in Woking. This was a gentle start to our six weeks on Tour. Everyone commuted from either London or Lewes and the surrounding areas, and as a result we shared cars. This has provided me with a rare insight into what music an opera singer listens to on those long motorway journeys. Any guesses? Turns out to be Tom Jones, Queen, and from the resident Mancunian tenor that is David Shaw,‘Best of the Nineties’(so many memories…), which predictably found its way into the male chorus dressing room before every show. This resulted in some interesting choreography from a few individuals who shall remain nameless, all of course while wearing our beautiful eighteenth costumes for Don Pasquale . And before you ask, yes I do have video footage!

Turning up to a new venue for the first time has its pros and cons. It was noticeable when we met on stage for our’balance call’with the Orchestra that there was a fresh excitement, and it’s moments like this that make us all realise we’re part of something very special. However this excitement can be dangerous. For example on the first night I nearly broke my leg exiting rather too enthusiastically off stage into the wings and completely mis-judging the edge of the unfamiliar stage.

We have a new addition to the soprano section, a very cute King Charles Spaniel puppy called Mally, owned by Gwawr Edwards. We are thinking of trying to include her in the picnic scene in Act III of Don Pasquale .

All in all a fairly quiet week to begin with, but stay tuned for next week. Most of us have our auditions for next season this Thursday, so nerves are a little frayed, and we’re all staying together in a Travel Lodge in Milton Keynes for the week. So I look forward to being your fly-on-the-wall.

Bye for now