Kitty studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Royal College of Music International Opera School. She is a passionate interpreter of song and has given many recitals including the Wigmore Hall, the Edinburgh Festival and the Oxford and Leeds Lieder Festivals. She was a winner of the Kathleen Ferrier Award and the 59th Overseas League, and a BBC New Generation Artist, during which time she made her debut album ‘This Other Eden’. She has worked with many of the UK orchestras, the Aix en Provence Festival and with Opera Holland Park and the Opéra National de Lorraine.
Kitty Whately trained at Chetham’s School of Music, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and the Royal College of Music International Opera School. She won both the Kathleen Ferrier Award and the 59th Royal Overseas League Award in the same year, and was part of the prestigious Verbier Festival Academy where she appeared as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro and in Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy. Kitty was a BBC New Generation Artist from 2013-15, during which time she recorded her debut solo album This Other Eden, made recordings with the BBC orchestras, commissioned a new song cycle and made several appearances at the Proms.
Opera highlights include Nancy Albert Herring for The Grange Festival in the festival’s debut season, as Hermia A Midsummer Night’s Dream with the Aix-en-Provence Festival and in Beijing; the world premiere of Vasco Mendonça’s The House Taken Over directed by Katie Mitchell, with performances in Antwerp, Strasbourg, Luxembourg, Bruges and Lisbon; Rosina Il barbiere di Siviglia and Stewardess in Jonathan Dove’s Flight (Opera Holland Park); Hermia A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Bergen National Opera); Kate Owen Wingrave (Opéra National de Lorraine); Dorabella Cosi fan tutte (English Touring Opera) and Ippolita / Pallade in Cavalli’s Elena in Montpellier and Versailles for the Aix-en-Provence Festival; and Eurydice Orfeo with English National Opera at Bristol Old Vic theatre.
Kitty is in high demand as a recitalist and concert artist. In her season 2016/17, she premiered a new work by Sally Beamish at the Three Choirs Festival; gave a recital at the Oxford Lieder Festival, and stepped in at the last minute to give an acclaimed recital at Wigmore Hall. She has given performances with most of the UK’s major orchestras, including Duruflé’s Requiem and Mozart’s Requiem (in Oslo with the Dunedin Consort and Royal Philharmonic Orchestra), Bach’s B Minor Mass (Royal Northern Sinfonia and Scottish Chamber Orchestra), Beethoven’s Mass in C Major (Philharmonia Orchestra), Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Ulster Orchestra), Haydn’s Nelson Mass (Britten Sinfonia on tour in Spain and the Netherlands), Bach’s Magnificat (Britten Sinfonia and Choir of King’s College Cambridge), Elgar Dream of Gerontius at St John’s Smith Square and Handel Messiah at the Royal Albert Hall. Kitty has given recitals at Wigmore Hall, Leighton House, and the Edinburgh International Festival, Oxford Lieder, Leeds Lieder and Buxton festivals, working regularly with renowned accompanists Roger Vignoles, Graham Johnson, Malcolm Martineau, Gary Matthewman, James Baillieu and Joseph Middleton.
Kitty made her BBC Proms debut in Sir Peter Maxwell Davies’ Suite from Act II of Caroline Mathilde, and also appeared in a Chamber Music Prom singing the music of Stephen Sondheim, and as Nancy in a concert performance of Britten’s Albert Herring. Her frequent performances with the BBC orchestras include De Falla’s The Three Cornered Hat (BBC National Orchestra of Wales) as well as recordings of Ravel’s Sheherezade with BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, Canteloube’s Songs of the Auvergne with BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and songs by Rodgers & Hammerstein, Jerome Kern and Cole Porter with BBC Concert Orchestra.
Last season, Kitty released her second album, Nights not spent alone, to critical acclaim. Recorded in a co-production between Champs Hill Records and the BBC, and accompanied by distinguished pianist Simon Lepper, the disc presents complete works for mezzo-soprano by Jonathan Dove. It includes a song cycle of the same name dedicated to Kitty, which she premiered at the Cheltenham Music Festival in 2015.
In season 2017-18 Kitty appears as Sesto Giulio Cesare with English Touring Opera, Coraline’s mother in Mark-Anthony Turnage’s latest opera Coraline based on the novel by British writer Neil Gaiman and Dorabella Così fan tutte for Opera Holland Park. On the concert platform Kitty sings Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Messiah with the City of Birmingham Chorus and a recital with accompanist Joseph Middleton in Hexham.
Mark-Anthony Turnage – CORALINE (Royal Opera House, Barbican Theatre)
‘Kitty Whately acted it all out to perfection on stage. […] all eyes were, as they should be, on Whately, a charismatic presence as both “good” and “bad” mums.’ David Nice, The Arts Desk (5 April 2018)
‘Kitty Whately is excellent as the mother and her mirror counterpart’ Richard Fairman Financial Times (1 April 2018)