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Elinor Popham

British / Irish soprano, Elinor Popham, is a London - based Lyric Coloratura Soprano. Working with Nuccia Focile, She recently graduated from The Royal Academy of Music (Distinction), where she was generously supported by the John Clemence Trust and the Sophie’s Silver Lining Fund. She was named joint-winner of the Isabel Jay Opera Prize in her first term, and cast as Violetta, Mme Herz (Der Schauspieldirektor) and Louise in Academy Scenes Showcases. Since graduating, she has tackled the roles of Pamina (St. Albans Chamber Opera), Lucia (Opera Integra), Violetta (Instant Opera - cover), Lucy; The Telephone (Opera on the Move - cover), and Najade (Uncovered Opera). She will soon cover the role of Musetta with Aylesbury Opera. 

Some of her first roles included Street Singer La Rondine and Elise Louise for Opera Coast and Papagena Die Zauberflote for Piggot's OperaElinor also performed regularly at the with Opera Warwick at the Warwick Arts Centre, as Rosalinda Die Fledermaus, Valencienne The Merry Widow, Mercedes Carmen and The Countess, a role which she performed whilst writing her dissertation about the opera itself after rehearsals! 

Having graduated from Warwick, she explored roles such as Blanche de la Force and Chérubin with Morley Opera (scenes), and also Gilda, Fiordiligi and Lauretta with Vox Integra in Feltre, Italy, with the invaluable guidance of Madelyn Renée, Maestro Mario Corradi and Maestro Paolo Vaglieri.


She made her London debut at Grimeborne Festival as Geraldine in A Hand of Bridge, receiving her first review from The Stage: ‘Popham’s lament on loneliness is especially poignant and vocally sophisticated.’ 

Having previously read English Literature at the University of Warwick, Elinor was awarded the Trebarwith Choral Scholarship and was a frequent concert soloist, performing in oratorio works including Tippett’s Child of Our Time and Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater. She also sang often as a soloist and member of The Hampshire Consort, during this time, performing with Patrick Hawes and Bob Chilcott.

Elinor hugely valued the opportunity to work with conductor and composer Paul McGrath whilst studying, performing principal roles in the world premiers of his new transcultural works for Western and Chinese orchestra, Evidence Frontiérs,  both at The Warwick Arts Centre and in Naples. 




Elinor was later selected as the Soprano Choral Scholar with Sloane Square Choral Society before and during the lockdowns (over ZOOM), singing solos from the Bach Magnificat and Charpentier's Messe de Minuit. A highlight of her time there was an online performance of the Fauré Requiem. More recently, she has performed as a soloist in Handel's Messiah for choral societies such as the Hampton Singers, the Vivaldi Magnificat, and the Mozart Requiem (London Classical Choir & Orchestra). 



Whilst at The Academy, Elinor gained further experience of programming and performing song recitals, through regular coaching with Anna Tilbrook and Richard Stokes. Despite the effects of the pandemic, she formed several important musical partnerships, including with duo partner Stella Marie Lorenz. She was honoured to be invited to give of a recital celebrating the work and lives of artists, John Keats and Franz Schubert by Richard Stokes, at Bob Boas House and Lauderdale House.


This duo now regularly programme and perform recitals around London, including 'Advent Adventures' a festive collection of songs and arias (SACO & other London venues). The were recently selected to give a live audition recital for the Young Artist Programme at Oxford International Song Festival.

A previous highlight was a programme of Opera Arias, performed at the opening of the Alresford Arts Festival at The Grange Festival.

Elinor has been awarded several prolific prizes, including the Opera Unmasked Aria Prize, and the North London and John Miller Young Recitalist Prizes, as well as the Runner Up Prize of the inaugural Isobel Buchanan Award.

Whilst at college, she was Highly Commended by Kate Royal in the Chissell Stephens Lieder Prize, alongside winning the Isobel Jay Prize. She was also proud  to reach the semi-finals of the National Mozart Competition, the  Somerset Song Prize and Bampton Classical Opera Young Singer Competition. She will soon be competing in the inaugural Eastbourne International Singing Competition.




Elinor has really valued the opportunity to work with artists and professionals such Roderick Williams, Hartmut Holl, Madelyn Renée, Kathryn Harries (NOS) and James Clutton (Opera Holland Park) for the Opera in the City Festival. She was also invited to perform a selection of the Schumann Liederkreis Op.39 for Graham Johnson with duo partner, Stella Marie Lorenz, a really valuable experience. Elinor was lucky to take part in a workshop with Dr Jessica Walker and Glyndebourne Artistic Director, Stephen Langridge, discovering ways to collaborate and create new opera.

She was selected to take part in an invaluable week of workshops with British Youth Opera, working with William Kerley and Liz Rowe. She was also grateful to have the chance to work with Maestro Paolo Vaglieri (La Scala) during a course with Vox Integra, and has since worked with him on several occasions in his Milan Studio, developing a real affinity with Bel Canto repertoire.

Elinor has always taken on a real variety of creative and collaborative projects, such as a performance art piece, exploring the relationship between the written word and the operatic voice, in collaboration with the Central School of Speech and Drama. She was also honoured to perform new compositions for voice and cello for the Mayor of Coventry.

She is also finding ways to combine her passions for opera and literature by writing libretti for new operatic works, discussing current themes and featuring strong female characters. Written in collaboration with composer Jack Redman, one of her songs was performed at the Oxford International Lieder Festival.


Alongside her singing, Elinor works as an Usher, Insights Runner and Learning and Participation Assistant at the Royal Opera House - inclusivity and outreach have always been a priority for her to promote as much as possible, first to fellow students at university and now, hopefully further.

Elinor also sings jazz (and often opera too) in certain locations across London, including 'Flavours of Naples' Italian Restaurant. She also presents recitals of operatic, jazz and musical theatre repertoire with her duo partner Alex Hall, as part of Ruby & Gold.

Elinor Popham



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Photography: OliviaDaCostaPhotography & RobertPiwkoPhotography

Copyright: 2024 Elinor Popham

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