We are delighted to introduce you to Matt Connolly who joins Heber to sing the role of Pollione. The character of Pollione is pivotal to the plot of this opera. His secret illicit relationship with Norma is further complicated when he tires of her and becomes obsessed with Adalgisa. The emotional confusion that follows spirals out of control leading to an inevitable conclusion.
Matt first took an interest in singing while studying Philosophy in Mainz, Germany, taking lessons at the Konservatorium there for a year under Roger Durstewitz. After returning to England, he continued studying singing with Andrew Hambly-Smith in Bristol, and later with Pauline Tinsley in London.
For a number of years he sang principal tenor roles in the semi-pro circuit in and around London, moving gradually from the French lyric repertoire to the Italian verismo repertoire of the late 19 th and early 20 th centuries. Most at home singing the familiar operas of Verdi and Puccini, he has nonetheless sung some oddities, and in the last year found himself singing mostly in German or Russian.
While this is his first time singing with Heber Opera, he is not entirely new to the area. One of the “oddities” of his early singing career was creating the role of Cuthman in “Cuthman’s Journey”, an opera about St Cuthman of Steyning, which received its premiere in the village.
Originally from the fenlands of southern Lincolnshire, Matt now lives in Tonbridge in Kent. By day he works in data warehousing and data science, and when he gets the chance he likes to play cricket, though as a fast bowler, he feels his days are now numbered!