The Classical Crossover Revival: Ones to Watch

As the Classic Brits returns after a five-year hiatus, and Katherine Jenkins re-signs to Decca, the future of classical music has never looked brighter.

Naturally, the revival of classical music is ushering in a spate of new, boundary-pushing artists. We’ve narrowed down the list of ones to watch to these three newcomers, each of which bring something completely different and refreshing to the table. Let us introduce you to the new generation of crossover artists…

Uno Prism – Nu-Jazz Electronica

Though the vibraphone or ‘vibes’ has been around since Louis Armstrong’s era (circa 1930), it’s an instrument that’s slipped in and out of popular culture. But this seems set to change once again with the introduction of Uno Prism aka Emma Welsby, whose slick nu-jazz inflected electronica combines a vibes expertise with bone-rattling bass rhythms, sweeping cinematic strings, gossamer-like vocals and electronic thrums. Though her weapon of choice may seem obscure to many, her sound will resonate with fans of Bonobo, Cinematic Orchestra and Boards of Canada.

Despite being likened to the more commercially-appealing experimentalists, Emma boasts a classical background in percussion. In her former years she racked up accolades such as BBC Young Musician of the Year quarter finalist and BBC Fame Academy finalist, before going on to play drums at festivals around Europe for Harley Davidson motorbikes and contributing to a number one hit album. Having garnered a reputation as an in-demand percussionist, Emma is now utilizing her talents in a songwriting capacity. Stayed tuned for more music.

Jane Maria – Opera

Jane Maria is not your average opera singer. Born in China, the singer has overcome countless hurdles in order to be recognised around the world, and yet she has succeeded at every stage.

Combining opera, traditional Chinese folk song and contemporary pop and RnB on her forthcoming album, the lead track, ‘Casta Diva’ (from Bellini’s opera, Norma), sees Jane interpreting the aria with impeccable style, showcasing her spine-tingling soprano voice.

Now, Jane Maria is on a mission to become one of the first Chinese artists to grace the UK charts. With her superhuman work-ethic and astounding talent, it seems like there’s no time like the present to conquer the UK market. Stay tuned for the singer’s first release.

Lady Geraldine – Musical Theatre

Often, the most captivating storytellers have survived the greatest tragedies. This couldn’t ring more true of  Lady Geraldine, an artist who has triumphed over a lifetime of heartbreak in order to deliver most recent masterpiece ‘Little Miss Blue‘. The Scottish singer spent her former years profoundly deaf until an operation in her early twenties partially recovered her hearing. Gaining just a part of this sense ignited her love of music in a way no-one who has always been able to hear could possibly imagine.

But for every triumph, a tragedy followed. Geraldine suffered through an abusive and violent marriage before the clouds parted once again and she found solace in two successful businesses, which then led her to a legendary producer and songwriter. The pair got chatting and it became clear that there was a natural affinity and his background with the likes of Wet, Wet, Wet through to Big Country, touched an emotional chord with her. Together, they went on to pen the songs that would make up ‘Little Miss Blue’, an embodiment of Geraldine’s stoicism and an ode to female empowerment.

 

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