Madeleine Shaw

Madeleine Shaw

"Shaw’s brighter tone glowed with a Wagnerian penumbra befitting a piece that owes more to Parsifal than the English oratorio.” [Dream of Gerontius]

The Guardian

Representation: General Management

Photo: Zoe Barling


Madeleine studied at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and at the National Opera Studio supported by English National Opera, she was subsequently on the young artist programme at ENO, for whom she has sung several roles over the recent seasons.   Madeleine has also appeared in principle roles at Covent Garden, Welsh National Opera, Opera North and on the concert platform has guested with Noseda, Sir Andrew Davis, Edward Gardner and has made regular appearances with the Hallé Orchestra and Sir Mark Elder.


Full Biography

Samling Artist Madeleine Shaw studied at the RSAMD and the National Opera Studio supported by English National Opera.

Solo performances include Tippett A Child of our Time at The Sage, Gateshead (Zehetmair), Mozart Requiem in Spain (John Eliot Gardiner), Debussy La Demoiselle Élue with BBC National Orchestra of Wales (Thierry Fisher) and Glagolitic Mass with the Hallé Orchestra (Elder).  Further concert engagements include Elgar Sea Pictures, Copland In the Beginning, Bach B Minor Mass, Vaughan Williams Serenade to Music at the Edinburgh International Festival, Bach Christmas Oratorio, Tavener Lamentation for Jerusalem in Jerusalem and Bethlehem, and St Matthew Passion in Cambridge, Duruflé Requiem and Haydn Nelson Mass with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Duruflé Requiem at the Sage, Gateshead, Verdi Requiem in Ely and Gloucester Cathedral, Messiah with the Hallé Orchestra and in Norway (Sandefjord Kammerchor), Spain (Oviedo Cathedral), and at the Royal Festival Hall and Royal Albert Hall, The Three Cornered Hat with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Beethoven 9th Symphony and Child of our Time with the Hallé Orchestra, Berlioz La Mort de Cléopatre with the RLPO, Verdi Requiem (Ryan Wigglesworth) at the St. Endellion Festival, Dream of Gerontius with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra (Petrenko), as well as Elijah in Southwell Minster, Handel Samson with the Irish Baroque Orchestra (Matthew Halls), Messiah at the Royal Albert Hall and Mahler 8th Symphony in the Leeds International Concert Season and also at Ely Cathedral, Wesendonck Lieder with the RPO at Cadogan Hall and her US debut in 2018 in Dream of Gerontius with Boston Philharmonic.

Opera in concert engagements have included Flowermaiden/Squire 2/Voice from Above Parsifal (BBC Proms) and Wellgunde Götterdämmerung, with the Hallé Orchestra (Elder), Emilia Otello with the BBC Philharmonic (Noseda), She-Ancient A Midsummer Marriage with BBC Symphony Orchestra (Andrew Davis/BBC Prom), Giovanna Rigoletto with the London Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican (Noseda) and Siegrune Die Walküre and Wellgunde Götterdämmerung for Opera North.

Madeleine made her Covent Garden debut as Forester’s Wife/Owl The Cunning Little Vixen and has subsequently returned to sing Rossweisse Die Walküre.  At ENO her roles have included Annina Der Rosenkavalier, Beggar Woman Death in Venice (also at the Holland Festival, La Monnaie and at La Scala, Milan), Second Lady The Magic Flute, Mercedes Carmen, Kate Pinkerton Madama Butterfly, 1st Witch in After Dido (a joint venture by ENO/The Young Vic), Maddalena Rigoletto and performances of songs by Kurt Weill and Samuel Barber also at The Young Vic.

Her operatic repertoire further includes Juno La Calisto and Medea Giasone with the Early Opera Company (Christian Curnyn) and Cretan Woman in Idomeneo at the Salzburg Spring Festival, in Berlin and Lucerne with Sir Simon Rattle and Adonella in Zandonai’s Francesca da Rimini for Opera Holland Park, Magdalene Die Meistersinger for ENO, a return to Opera North as Wellgunde Das Rheingold/Götterdämmerung and Rossweisse Die Walküre in their complete Ring Cycles as well as Siegrune Die Walküre at the Edinburgh International Festival (Sir Andrew Davis), Annina Der Rosenkavalier and the title role in the world première of Elena Langer’s Rhondda Rips It Up! for Welsh National Opera and Witch Hänsel und Gretel in Salisbury.

Recent highlights include performances of Rhondda Rips it Up! for WNO, Brahms Alto Rhapsody at Canterbury Cathedral, Messiah at The Sage, Gateshead and also at the Royal Albert Hall, Bradamante Alcina for La Nuova Musica at St John’s Smith Square, Mass in B Minor for Sheffield Philharmonic, A Child of our Time with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Dream of Gerontius with the RPO at Snape Maltings, her role debut as Fricka Das Rheingold for Longborough Festival and The Apostles at Canterbury Cathedral.

Engagements in 2019/2020 include Dream of Gerontius at Exeter Cathedral, Ruckert Lieder with the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera at St David’s Cathedral, Maddalena Rigoletto for Glyndebourne on Tour, Messiah with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Beethoven Choral Fantasia with the Philharmonia Orchestra, Glagolitic Mass with the LPO at the Royal Festival Hall, Verdi Requiem with the Hallé Orchestra, Fricka Die Walküre at Longborough Festival and Dream of Gerontius at Saffron Hall.

Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to make sure you receive the most up to date version.  Email: Elin Jones



Christmas with Hazard Chase

December 2nd, 2019

Festive concerts throughout the Christmas season

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UK Summer Opera 2019

May 20th, 2019

Hazard Chase artists in this year’s summer opera festivals.

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‘Tis the Season

November 26th, 2018

HC artists’ concert performances this festive period

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Three Choirs Festival: Hereford 2018

July 24th, 2018

Hazard Chase artists appearing at this year’s festival

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Rhondda Rips it Up!

June 7th, 2018

Madeleine Shaw returns to WNO as the suffragette, Lady Rhondda

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Verdi RIGOLETTO – Glyndebourne on Tour

“…and Madeleine Shaw’s Maddalena was one of the best I’ve heard (or seen) on any stage”
Roger Parker, Opera Magazine (December 2019)

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Wagner DAS RHEINGOLD – Longborough Festival Opera

“Madeleine Shaw’s gleaming, imperious Fricka ”
Peter Reed, classicalsource (June 2019)

Handel ALCINA, La Nuova Musica

“Madeleine Shaw is a formidably spirited Bradamante”
Yehuda Shapiro, The Stage (January 2019)

“As Bradamante, Madeleine Shaw brought great strength, clarity and warmth to her mezzo-soprano”
Sam Smith, MusicOMH (January 2019)

“The La Nuova Musica director, David Bates, harried Madeleine Shaw’s Bradamante with hair-raising tempi in her bravura numbers”
Hugh Canning, The Times (January 2019)

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Elena Langer RHONDDA RIPS IT UP, Welsh National Opera

“Central to everything was a Brünnhilde of a performance by Madeleine Shaw as Viscountess Rhondda, with the requisite strength and sensitivity in her acting and all the vocal authority one has come to expect from this gifted singer”
Rian Evans, Opera Magazine (Aug 2018)

“Mezzo Madeleine Shaw is an excellent Rhondda, vocally rich and agile”
Steph Power, Opera Now (July/Aug 2018)

“The remarkable story of the viscountess is a gift, and the all-female creative team make the most of it, as does the mezzo-soprano Madeleine Shaw, who plays her with aplomb.”
Rebecca Franks, The Times (June 2018)

“Sudden mood shifts highlight the critical issues, with mezzo Madeleine Shaw proving a superb Rhondda, poignantly supported by singer-actor sisters.”
Steph Power, The Stage (June 2018)

“Madeleine Shaw was strong-voiced and believably charismatic in the role of Margaret Haig Thomas, moving from being light-hearted to serious, and from determined campaigner to besotted lover and back again, embracing musical styles from G&S to torch song with equal conviction.”
Cath Barton, Wales Arts Review (June 2018)

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Elgar THE DREAM OF GERONTIUS, Boston Philharmonic Orchestra

“When Gerontius passes away he is joined by his Guardian Angel, a part that was a fine fit for mezzo-soprano Madeleine Shaw. With a smooth tone that brought a child-like touch to the role, Shaw prepared Gerontius for his union with God and venture into Purgatory. Shaw’s singing spiced Elgar’s vocal writing in a few spots—her light, scooping phrases sweetened the word “agony” with a hint of dissonance.”
Aaron Keebaugh, Boston Classical Review (April 2018)

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“Madeleine Shaw, who seems to become an ever more accomplished singer in range and tone, was a very fine Annina”
Rian Evans, Opera Magazine (August 2017)

Handel SAMSON, Irish Baroque Orchestra

“Madeleine Shaw excelled as Micah; mellifluous, balanced and relaxed, she conveyed her heartfelt concern for Samson very well. There was deep nobility to the phrasing of “Ye sons of Israel, now lament” while the aria at the end of act one “Then long eternity” was profoundly moving.”
Andrew Larkin, Bachtrack (January 2016)

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Discography & Repertoire

W. S. Gilbert & Alfred Cellier – THE MOUNTEBANKS

John Andrews conducts the BBC Concert Orchestra and the BBC Singers with James Cleverton (Arrostino), Madeleine Shaw (Ultrice), Soraya Mafi (Teresa) and Geoffrey Dalton (Pietro)

Dutton Epoch (2018)

Edward Elgar & Arnold Bax – FOR THE FALLEN

Sir Mark Elder conducts the Hallé Orchestra & Choir with contributions from Madeleine Shaw (mezzo), Rachel Nicholls (soprano) and Joshua Ellicott (tenor)

HALLÉ (2017)


Cast includes Toby Spence (Philip), Alan Opie (The Devil), Laine (Elin Manahan Thomas), Madeleine Shaw (Jacqueline) and Catherine Wyn-Rogers (Joan).  Rory MacDonald conducts the BBC National Orchestra & Chorus of Wales.

CHANDOS (2013)

Artist Manager

John McHugh (Cambridge)
01223 706024

Associate Artist Manager

Elin Jones (Cambridge)
01223 706026