The New Generation Festival (NGF) was founded in 2017 to promote and support emerging young artists from around the world. The NGF presents the finest talents in opera, music, theatre and across the Arts with a programme that runs throughout the year in spectacular locations, ranging from the Swiss mountains of Andermatt to its flagship summer festival in Florence. Inspired by the achievements of the Italian Renaissance, The NGF celebrates creativity and stimulates it through the connection of art forms, cultures and generations.
In August 2020, The NGF staged The ReGeneration Festival in partnership with The Uffizi Galleries at the landmark Boboli Gardens to demonstrate the paramount importance of sustaining culture in times of crisis. It was an unprecedented manifestation of the restorative power of the Arts and magnificent proof of what is possible through cooperation. The upheavals of 2020 have focussed the world’s attention on the existential challenges facing humanity in the coming decades. The solutions to these challenges will be found by individuals, organisations and nations working together for the common good, and The NGF intends to play its part.
In September 2020, The New Generation Festival launched the Mascarade Opera Studio in Florence at the Palazzo Corsini al Prato to provide a carefully designed nine-month training programme for eight singers and two répétiteurs every year. The Mascarade Opera Studio offers tuition scholarships so that its artists can study free of charge and so that it can support the very greatest talent from around the world.
The studio provides extensive performance skills training by expert coaches, vocal consultants, performance specialists and internationally acclaimed masterclass teachers, including legendary Italian soprano Mariella Devia as Honorary President and world-renowned English baritone Sir Thomas Allen as Honorary Patron. The studio is led by Maximilian Fane together with the studio's Director Dr Ralph Strehle and the Head of Coaching Julia Lynch. The artistic advisory board includes Claudia Assmann, Christoph Boehmke, Susan Bullock, Jessica Cottis, Anush Hovhannisyan, Roger Granville, Frankie Parham, Sam McShane, Jonathan Papp, Jonathan Santagada and Carmen Santoro.
The Mascarade Opera Studio Artists 2021-2 are:
Sopranos Manon Gleizes (France), Marianna Hovhannisyan (Armenia)
Mezzo-sopranos Aebh Kelly (Ireland), Maria Miller (USA)
Tenor Aaron Godfrey-Mayes (UK)
Baritones William Desbiens (Canada), Grisha Martirosyan (Armenia)
Bass Connor Baiano (Italy)
Répétiteurs Matteo Londero (Italy), Kristina Yorgova (Bulgaria)