Scottish baritone Arthur Bruce is a former Scottish Opera Emerging Artist and a Britten–Pears Young Artist. He is a graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s (RCS) Alexander Gibson Opera School, and English National Opera’s ‘Opera Works’ programme. In 2018 Arthur was in the final round of the ‘Concorso per il Biennio di perfezionamento per cantanti lirici’ at the Accademia Teatro alla Scala in Milan.
Whilst at the RNCM, Arthur won the John Cameron Prize for Lieder and the Kate Snape Scholarship, as well being a finalist in the Elizabeth Harwood Memorial Award for Singers, the RNCM Gold Medal Competition and the College’s Concerto competition.
Operatic engagements include covering the title role DON GIOVANNI; Schaunard LA BOHÈME; Belcore L’ELISIR D’AMORE; Guglielmo COSÌ FAN TUTTE; Starveling & cover Demetrius A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM; cover Ford FALSTAFF; Antonio THE GONDOLIERS; Phantis UTOPIA, LIMITED, all for Scottish Opera; Count Almaviva THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO for Opera Bohemia; Artidoro GLI SPOSI MALCONTENTI for Bampton Classical Opera; Papageno DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE for Berlin Opera Academy; Zurga LES PÊCHEURS DE PERLES for Edinburgh Grand Opera; Pierre Lafitte in the European première of Amy Beach’s CABILDO with Opera Eos (now New Voices Theatre); Guglielmo COSÌ FAN TUTTE at Bedford Park Festival in London and at Chez Cartier in France; Wolfram TANNHÄUSER, Vierte Knappe and cover Amfortas PARSIFAL, and cover Melot and Steuermann TRISTAN UND ISOLDE for Saffron Opera Group; Der Einäugige DIE FRAU OHNE SCHATTEN and Donner DAS RHEINGOLD with Edinburgh Players Opera Group; Prince Yamadori MADAMA BUTTERFLY at Bowdon Festival Opera; title rôle GIANNI SCHICCHI, Henry Davis STREET SCENE, and Sam TROUBLE IN TAHITI with the RCS Alexander Gibson Opera School.
Also for Scottish Opera, Arthur sang Angus in composer Samuel Bordoli and librettist Jenni Fagan’s visceral exploration of the clash between class, gender and workplace pressure in 21st century Scotland, THE NARCISSISTIC FISH. Arthur also sang in gala concerts as part of Søholm Opera’s 2019 ‘Opera in Unlikely Places’ festival on the island of Samsø in Denmark.
Other work includes performances at the Grant Park Festival in Chicago, Grand Teton Festival in Wyoming, Festival Berlioz in La Côte-Saint-André with Sir John Eliot Gardiner and the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, and the Aberdeen International Youth Festival.
Also enthusiastic about contemporary music, Arthur enjoys collaborating with composers, and recently commissioned a piece by renowned Boosey & Hawkes composer, David Horne. He has premiered works by David Horne, Tom Harrold, Paul Mealor, Stephen Deazley, Samuel Bordoli, Tom Cunningham, Ken Johnston and John Goldie-Scot.
During his studies, Arthur took part in various masterclasses with noted soloists including Sir Simon Keenlyside, Roderick Williams, Sir John Tomlinson, Dennis O’Neill, Nadine Secunde, and David Owen Norris.
Oratorio repertoire includes Brahms Requiem, Duruflé Requiem, Fauré Requiem, Mozart Requiem and Michael Haydn Requiem, Bach Magnificat and St John Passion (Christus/Pilatus), Delius Sea Drift, Dove Arion and the Dolphin, Dvořák Stabat Mater, Finzi In terra pax, Handel Messiah, Samson (Manoa/Harapha), and Utrecht Te Deum & Jubilate, Haydn Nelson Mass and Paukenmesse, Hummel Mass in C, Mendelssohn Elijah, Orff Carmina Burana, Parry Ode on St. Cecilia’s Day, Puccini Messa di Gloria, Rossini Petite messe solennelle, Stainer The Crucifixion, Szymanowski Stabat Mater, Vaughan Williams Five Mystical Songs, Serenade to Music and Fantasia on Christmas Carols, as well as the narration in Krzysztof Penderecki’s Symphony No.7 ‘Seven Gates of Jerusalem’.