Meet the cast and creative teams behind Opera Holland Park’s 2022 Season. Over the coming weeks, we’ll introduce our singers, directors, conductors and crews at the heart of the productions this summer.
This week, we meet Henry Grant Kerswell, the Young Artist Prince Gremin. Having made his Opera Holland Park debut in 2003 and taken many supporting roles since, as well as being a prominent figure behind our bars, Henry is a key fixture of the OHP season. Following the final Young Artists performance this week, Henry tells us about his experience of the programme and what he has loved about working with this team.
Can you introduce us to your role this season?
I’m singing Prince Gremin in the Young (ish) Artists production. At last! As it has been postponed from 2020.
What aspects of your role are you most excited about?
Getting to sing one of the most beautiful bass arias ever written. In fact, my first aria ever in fact on the main stage. Up until now, it’s been endless messengers, gardeners, doctors and assassins.
What are you enjoying about the Young Artists programme this year?
Having the time to really work with the excellent YA music team and director. It’s a real luxury.
Have you got a favourite OHP memory?
After so many seasons it’s hard to pick just one. It’s more that every day is a joy as you’re surrounded by like-minded people all striving to make the company the best it can be. And my actual ones are unprintable!
What is something surprising about your job that audience members may not know?
It’s a constant battle balancing drinking a huge amount of water before you start singing and timing when you can visit the restroom on a busy show.
Was there any music that got you through lockdown? What was it and how did it help you?
I listened to the radio a lot more, especially BBC Radio 6. Lots of different genres and fellowship with the presenters and other listeners in discovering new music together.
What are you looking forward to this season?
Hopefully showing what I can do with a dream role!
What is the best piece of advice you’ve received, musical or otherwise?
Know your music, be kind to yourself and your colleagues, and mostly, don’t be rubbish.