Ashley Riches

Ashley Riches

BASS-BARITONE

Representation: General Management

Overview

British Bass-Baritone Ashley Riches was a member of the Jette Parker Young Artists programme at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden having previously studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and at King’s College Cambridge.  Ashley has already established himself in both opera and concerts with Esa-Pekka Salonen, Stephen Cleobury, Sir Roger Norrington, Paul McCreesh, Jonathan Cohen, Robin Ticciati, Jan Latham-Koenig, David Hill and Richard Egarr.  His broad repertoire includes Britten, Puccini, Mozart, Handel as well as appearing on the recent release of Complete Songs (Poulenc) on Hyperion.

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Full Biography

Ashley Riches read English at Cambridge University, where he was a member of King’s College Choir.    He studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and was a Jette Parker Young Artist at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden from 2012-14.

Ashley made his ROH main stage debut singing with Roberto Alagna in a gala concert.  During his two years at Covent Garden he also appeared as Salieri in Rimsky Korsakov’s Mozart and Salieri, as Michael in the world premiere of Eichbert’s Glare (Linbury Studio), Morales Carmen, Mandarin Turandot, Baron Douphol La Traviata and Officer Les Dialogues des Carmelites.  He has since returned to the company to sing Osmano in L’Ormindo at the Globe Theatre.  Other roles previously sung include Marcello La Bohème, title roles Eugene Onegin and Don Giovanni, Aeneas Dido and Aeneas, Father Hänsel und Gretel,  Tarquinius The Rape of Lucretia,  Sid Albert Herring,  Demetrius A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Ibn-Hakia Iolanta.   Ashley made his debut for English National Opera as Schaunard La Bohème and has recently appeared in the title role of Owen Wingrave (Opéra National de Lorraine, Nancy).

Already well established on the concert platform,  Ashley’s appearances include the UK premiere of Shostakovich Orango (Philharmonia Orchestra/Esa-Pekka Salonen), Messiah in Birmingham Symphony Hall and with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment,  Mass in B Minor with Arcangelo at Flanders Festival,   Beethoven Missa Solemnis with Sir Roger Norrington,  Handel L’Allegro and Mozart Requiem with the Gabrieli Consort,   Britten’s War Requiem with Novaya Opera Moscow and in Cadogan Hall, and  Bach Cantatas with the AAM at the Wigmore Hall.   Most recently he made his debut with the Berlin Philharmonic as Creon Oedipus Rex with Sir John Eliot Gardiner and joined the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra for an extensive European tour of Bach’s St Matthew Passion.   Ashley also took part in the world premiere of John Powell’s Prussian Requiem with the Philharmonia Orchestra, sang Pollux Castor and Pollux with Christian Curnyn at St John’s Smith Square, Bach’s Weinachtsoratorium with the AAM and The Kingdom at the Three Choirs Festival in Gloucester.

As a recitalist Ashley has appeared at the Wigmore Hall, Barbican Hall, the City of London Festival, the Schubert Festival and the Ludlow Festival.   His recordings include Poulenc Chansons Gaillardes with Graham Johnson for Hyperion,  a solo disc of Shakespeare Sonnets set to music by Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco,  for Resonus Classics,  St John Passion (AAM) and Daniel Purcell’s The Judgement of Paris and Handel’s L’Allegro (Gabrieli Consort).   He also made a TV appearance in David Starkey’s TV series “Music and the Monarchy”.

Highlights in the 2016/17 season include a return to English National Opera as the Pirate King The Pirates of Penzance, Purcell’s The Fairy Queen with the AAM, Apollo e Dafne with the Pannon Philharmonic in Hungary, Israel in Egypt with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Christmas Oratorio on tour with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.

Ashley is a member of the BBC New Generation Artists scheme.

Artist website: www.ashleyriches.com

Promoters please note: If you want to include this biography in concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to ensure you receive the most up to date version.
Email: Caroline Challis

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News

BBC Philharmonic Orchestra

November 23rd, 2016

Lucy Hall and Ashley Riches appear with top orchestra

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Riches announced as New Generation Artist

August 30th, 2016

Bass-baritone joins prestigious BBC Radio 3 scheme

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Summer in Italy

July 12th, 2016

Hazard Chase artists perform across the country.

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Berlin Philharmonic debut for Ashley Riches

May 23rd, 2016

Bass-baritone Ashley Riches makes his debut with Berlin Philharmonic in Stravinsky’s ‘Oedipus Rex’

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Raising Money for Pancreatic Cancer UK

January 5th, 2016

Promoting our sixth concert for this inspiring charity

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Reviews

Elgar THE KINGDOM – Three Choirs Festival, Gloucester

“Ashley Riches was outstanding in the commanding bass role of Peter”
Stephen Walsh, The Arts Desk, July 2016

CHRISTMAS ORATORIO– Acadamy of Ancient Music

“Ashley Riches took the bass part and his voice revealed depth and warmth while maintaining clarity by not indulging in too excessive a vibrato. His performance of ‘Grosser Herr, o starker König’ was particularly fine as the solo trumpet rang out.”
Sam Smith, Music OMH, December 2015

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“The real star of the evening was young Ashley Riches, only two years out of the Royal Opera’s Jette Parker Young Artists programme, and the total artist: range secure from top to bottom, a highly dramatic way with the text and pure musicianship.”
David Nice, The Arts Desk, December 2015

“…the increasingly impressive bass Ashley Riches brought authority and clear German to his recitatives.”
Richard Fairman, Financial Times, December 2015

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 LA BOHEME – English National Opera

“Riches’s raunchy, funny Schaunard is one of the best of recent years.”
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, October 2015

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JETTE PARKER YOUNG ARTISTS SUMMER SHOWCASE (ACT 1: COSI FAN TUTTE) – Royal Opera House

“The outstanding all-round male performance of the afternoon came from Ashley Riches as Don Alfonso. This young man is the perfect stage animal, confident without being overbearing, camp when appropriate, darkly sinister if need be. He looked as if he had been singing the role of Don Alfonso for the last twenty years in major houses. His use of Italian, particularly in the recitative, was exceptional and he has a lovely dark baritone, making him ideal to play sinister villains in future”
Opera Britannia, Miranda Jackson (20 July 2014)

“Ashley Riches sang the infamous role of Don Alfonso and he was outstanding in it. He has a marked, charismatic stage presence, projects his voice well, has clear diction and his baritone is powerful and expressive. His Don Alfonso was suitably manipulative but also charming, making it convincing that he can easily lead the two young men to do what he wants for his own amusement.”
Seen and Heard International, Margarida Mota-Bull (23 July 2014)

Purcell FAIRY QUEEN, The Gabrieli Consort – Spitalfields

“A dash of spontaneity, though, is not so foreign to Purcell’s semi-operas and the joie de vivre that coursed through scenes such as the Drunken Poet’s rant, wittily played by Ashley Riches, and the whole of the last act was true to the work’s spirit.”
Financial Times, Richard Fairman (June 2012)

“Fine support came from the young bass Ashley Riches.”
Neil Fisher, The Times (June 2012)

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Discography & Repertoire

Bach – St Matthew Passion

Ashley Riches sings Pilatus on this 1727 version of the St Matthew from the Academy of Ancient Music conducted by Richard Egarr

AAM RECORDS (2015)

Artist Manager

Sue Nicholls (Cambridge)
sue.nicholls@hazardchase.co.uk
01223 706023

Assistant Artist Manager

Caroline Challis (Cambridge)
caroline.challis@hazardchase.co.uk
01223 706414