We’re stretching Suffolk’s borders in this posting, but at least one of our young stars, is so close geographically and in spirit, that I hope readers will excuse the poetic licence.
Suffolk Online was lucky enough to be invited to a local preview of pOperatically Speaking on Sunday and felt that geographical technicalities shouldn’t prevent us sharing it with a wider audience. Such was the talent and presence of the two virtuosos that the fact that they are both just 16 was somewhat irrelevant. It was a spine tingling performance that we would have paid good money for on the professional singing circuit.
pOperatically Speaking is the performance that Callum Bicknell and Emily Stanghan have put together for the Edingburgh Fringe Festival next week. Neither are strangers to public performances and their already established credentials would bring wistful sighs to singers twice their age. Just as excitingly, their style and repertoire breaks the mould of the dumbing down of music that many of us have witnessed over the past few years. Emily, a sparkling Soprano, and Callum, a rich baritone, sing, either solo or as duets, a carefully chosen Robbie William’s number (with a twist) just as easily and powerfully as a Gershwin or Quarantotto/Sartori.
What’s more they’re a grounded and charming pair of young people and blessed with more than just a little help from their multi skilled and multi tasking family who spend almost every spare moment enabling and supporting their many and varied performances.
If you’re anywhere near Edinburgh between the 9th and 14th August (preview 8th August, 18.45), Emily and Callum are at Augustine’s (Venue 152), 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EL for a one hour performance starting at 18.25, tickets £5.50, Box Office 0131 510 0022 or link to Ed Fringe - Poperatically Speaking, to book online.
Reviewed by Jane Cody for Suffolk Online. Jane is a regular reviewer for Time Out publications.