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1. Healing power of Rozario. Sunday Telegraph (Australia) 13 July 2003
2. Patricia Rozario. By Stafford Law.
Patricia Rozario

Healing power of Rozario.
Sunday 13 July 2003

On the phone from her home in London, super-soprano Patricia Rozario OBE laughs a lot. It's such a lovely sound, the impulse to provoke more of it is overwhelming. Rozario laughs easily and often because, she says, she's happy with her lot.

At that moment she's rehearsing hard for a major event in England before coming to Australia for a very special concert at the Sydney Opera House later this month.

"I am absolutely delighted to be coming to Sydney at this time, truly," she says. "The music is very special and I am so honoured to be doing it."

The music is Lament For Jerusalem, a new work by Sir John Tavener, commissioned by our very special Father Arthur Bridge and given its world premiere by Rozario with the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs and the Australian Youth Orchestra.

"I have been singing John's music for 10 years," Rozario says of the eminent Englishman. "He says he has my voice in mind when he composes and I know I find I easily identify with his work."

The Bombay-born (based in Britain for the past 25 years) Rozario still has a spicy Indian lilt to her impeccably modulated voice - this makes her laugh again, then explain: "My family originally came from Goa and we were steeped in the western tradition of music. There were always gatherings around a piano. My mother played and sang and my father was musical.

"He loved the popular songs of the music hall. I remember my father getting out the Italian arias and there were Gilbert and Sullivan shows for fundraising. They were fine productions too; my mother put on Oliver! and my brothers all played pickpockets."

Rozario has four brothers, no sisters, lots of cousins and a lifetime of competition with her elder brother. "I was always second, he was a boy soprano."

She laughs: "Until his voice broke! We grew up with the Santa Cruz music festival every year and from the age of seven I was encouraged to take part. It was marvellous training."

In London, she studied at the Guildhall and won the gold medal and the first of many prizes and awards. She has performed with the opera greats all over Europe and Britain. In recent years, she's become a brilliant concert performer, ranging across baroque to contemporary. As well as being a Tavener favourite, she has appeared in Hermann Prey's Schubertiade at the South Bank and Elvis Costello's Meltdown.

Her recordings are varied and one she's particularly proud of is Casken's Golem - which won a Gramophone award. "Coming from India I had a lot of catching up to do," she says. "I was immersed in early music, loved Mozart and then, in the mid-'80s, out of the blue, I was asked to audition for John Casken."

Despite initial misgivings, it proved to be a turning point in her career. "Obviously I tried to look for the easy ones at first." The laugh gurgles again. "It can be very gruelling, but what was good was that it forced me to become more competent."

That she is stratospherically beyond mere competence will become clear when she takes the stage in the Concert Hall.

"This work has a very strong spiritual element. People should not be misled by the title. It unites different religions; there are two poems going simultaneously: Psalm 137 and a Sufi text. They complement each other and bring the voices and listeners together. I think it will be very healing.
It's beautiful."

Sydney Opera House Concert Hall, July 24; phone 9251 3115 or visit

Eternal Sunrise (Tavener)
Stafford Law
Eternal Sunrise (Tavener)
‘For much of the present decade, Tavener – exotic, esoteric, devoted to Greek Orthodoxy and
recently anointed “the world’s most famous composer” – has been writing with one specific voice
in mind.
‘The voice belongs to Patricia Rozario….She has been the inspiration for more than a dozen
pieces – Innocence, Apocalypse, Agrophon and the hypnotic Akhmatova Songs among them.
Their recent collaboration on disc, the Princess Diana-dedicated Eternity’s Sunrise, is currently
selling in pop music proportions. Together they make a distinctly odd couple. Yet together they
also make one of the most successful partnerships in contemporary British music.’

The Sunday Times

Patricia Rozario was born and educated in Bombay, India. She trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (Maggie Teyte Prize, Gold Medal of the Worshipful Company of Musicians) and at the National Opera Studio in London under Vera Rozsa.

On the operatic stage in Great Britain, Patricia Rozario has appeared with English National Opera, Opera North, Glyndebourne Touring Opera and at the Garsington Festival in operas by Beethoven, Belisa, Gluck, Haydn, Massenet, Monteverdi, Mozart and Purcell and at the Aldeburgh and Almeida Festivals in operas by Casken and Tavener. On the operatic stage abroad, she has appeared in Aix-en- Provence, Brussels, Frankfurt, Ghent, Innsbrück, Lyons and Stuttgart in operas by Cimarosa, Gluck, Händel and Mozart.

With the late Sir Georg Solti, Patricia Rozario toured the major European capital cities in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro.

Recent opera engagements include Angelica (Orlando) with De Vlaamse Opera.

On the concert platform, Patricia Rozario is regarded as one of the outstanding recitalists of her generation. She has appeared in recital at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and is regularly engaged as a soloist for the BBC Promenade Concerts.

She has made regular appearances with the Songmakers’ Almanac from its inception and has appeared in recital and concert at the Aldeburgh, Bath, Cheltenham, Edinburgh, Harrogate and City of London Festivals. She was part of Hermann Prey’s Schubertiade on London’s South Bank, where she appeared in Elvis Costello’s Meltdown.

The Nightingale’s to Blame (Holt)
‘ with Tavener, Rozario is Holt’s muse;
the part of Belissa was written especially for
her….Rozario’s fluid ability to traverse
Tavener’s leaps and swooning, swelling
interval shifts seems to have fired Holt’s
theatrical imagination.’
The Guardian

Ikon of Eros (Tavener)
'Fleezanis played impressively and was
joined by a remarkable soprano, Patricia
Rozario. She achieved just the right earthy
tone in the third movement, along with
some stunning top notes, including a high

Michael Anthony, Star Tribune

Abroad, Patricia Rozario has made numerous concert appearances in, amongst other cities, Amsterdam, Athens, Berlin, Halle, Helsinki, Hong Kong, Köln, Leipzig, Madrid, Minneapolis, New York, Paris, Perth, Rouen, Strasbourg, Toronto, Vienna, Winterthur and Zürich.
Eternal Sunrise (Tavener)
‘Rozario’s voice floats high in long, melismatic lines over an ethereal landscape of periodinstrument strings, bells and harp. Although Rozario’s name is currently more associated with living composers, she has worked frequently with earlier music and here welcomes the juxtaposition of a modern vision and ancient instrument.’
Kate Sheriff

Patricia Rozario has made more than 30 recordings, from world premières of works by Sir John Tavener (Eternity’s Sunrise, Agraphon, Akhmatova Songs, Fall and Resurrection), to Canteloube’s Songs of the Auvergne with the Philharmonia Orchestra under the baton of the late Sir John Pritchard, to a recital of Spanish Songs with her husband, the pianist Mark Troop.

Recent engagements include a concert tour with the Beethoven Academie; the première and recording of a Tavener’s Ikon of Eros with the Minnesota Symphony Orchestra; a concert tour with the BT Scottish Ensemble; two concerts at the Perth Festival and a concert with the Hong Kong Sinfonietta.

Fall & Resurrection (Tavener)
‘Patricia Rozario sang the fiendishly difficult
soprano part marvellously.’
Sunday Telegraph, Michael Kennedy

Eternal Sunrise (Tavener)
‘John Tavener’s short and sweet Eternity’s
Sunrise, beautifully sung by the composer’s
favourite soprano, Patricia Rozario…’
The Sunday Times

Future engagements include a concert tour to the major English Festivals with the Academy of Ancient Music, the performance and recording of Tavener’s Veil of the Temple with the Temple Church, Arvo Pärt’s Come Ante (which was written for Patricia Rozario) with the Russian National Orchestra in Moscow and the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, both under the baton of Vladimir Jurowski; the première and recording of a new Tavener commission with the Sydney Philharmonia at the Sydney Opera House; two concerts in Israel; and Handel’s Messiah with the Minnesota Symphony Orchestra.

Patricia Rozario was awarded the OBE in the United Kingdom New Year’s Honours List 2001, for services to Music.

Perth International Arts Festival/Schoenberg String Quartet No.2
'The work, unusually, incorporates a part for soprano voice and here, in ensemble with the
visiting Szymanowski Quartet, the superb Bombay-born Patricia Rozario employed with high
artistry an opulent vocal quality that
rode with ease the accompanying instrumental wave as it negotiated an often excruciatingly
difficult vocal line. If you missed this event, make every effort to attend further concerts which
feature Rozario; she has a voice worth getting excited about.'
Neville Cohn/The West Australian


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