AN EXPERIENCED COMPANY OF SINGERS AND MUSICIANS, BRINGING CLASSICAL, OPERA AND MUSICAL THEATRE TO AUDIENCES
AN EXPERIENCED COMPANY OF SINGERS AND MUSICIANS, BRINGING HIGH QUALITY AND INNOVATIVE CONCERT PERFORMANCES
TO THE HERTFORDSHIRE AREA,
RAISING FUNDS FOR CHARITIES
Felici Opera 2023 Programme
Saturday 9th September
Romance is in the air!
A romance themed concert at the end of the annual church open day for harvest, in support of St Peter's church. A delightful programme of romantic songs from stage and screen
Sunday 24th September
We are delighted to be returning to Copped Hall for an Italian opera treat. This concert was orriginally programmed for September 2022 but was postponed following the death of Her Majesty, the Queen. Our performers will treat you to a beautiful assortment of favourite arias from Mozart, Puccini and Verdi.
Saturday 7th October
Mozart, Verdi & Puccini in the drawing room at St Paul's Walden Bury, the home of our patrons Sir Simon and Lady Caroline Bowes Lyon. Money raised will be donated to Health and Hope: Transferring rural communities in Myanmar (formally Burma).
Saturday 9th December
Join us for a festive feast of Christmas and winter themed songs – classical and modern.
THE FELICI ETHOS
Felici means "the happy ones" and so we aim to provide high quality and creative musical events - bringing happiness to audiences and performers alike. Although we are delighted to perform all over the United Kingdom we are particularly focused on Hertfordshire.
Supporting charities is central to our ethos. Since our founding in 2016 we have raised over £23,300 for a wide variety of charities including the NKF (National Kidney Federation), Macmillan Nurses and Medicins Sans Frontiers as well as local hospices, community projects and church maintenance and renovation.
We seek to support and nurture young people by including them in our events, introducing opera and classical song to school-age pupils and to support the career of young professionals.
We understand that our performers have diverse commitments and we always seek to be as flexible as possible with our rehearsal schedules whilst never compromising on the quality of our performances.
We are supported by Godfrey Laws, Chartered Accountants.
FELICI OPERA FOUNDERS
Margaret Johnson and Zoe Jasko
(Founder/ Musical Director)
As Co-Director, Margaret brings a wealth of experience from a number of fields.
She trained at the Royal College of Music. After graduation and a year of advanced studies, including work in the RCM Opera School, she completed her Diploma in Education at the Institute of Education. For many years her work as a professional musician continued alongside a career in education, teaching all ages from Early Years to adults. As a Primary Headteacher, she was involved in research projects with a number of higher education establishments such as Westminster College, Oxford (Study of Gifted and Talented pupils) and De Montfort University (MA Modules in Educational Management). During this time she gave presentations on many aspects of leadership, especially Strategic Leadership and Team Building.
As a professional musician, Margaret has worked with soloists, ensembles, choirs, choral and operatic societies and orchestras over many years, primarily in the North Herts area. She has a particular interest in and passion for the voice – possibly not that surprising, given her Welsh and Italian heritage! She currently works as a singing teacher and repetiteur/vocal coach as well as MD//Conductor. She met Zoe when, as MD, she worked with her on a production of Sondheim’s Into the Woods. Ultimately this led to the formation of Felici – a fusion of two highly creative minds!
Margaret is also a qualified Spiritual Director and a licensed lay Minister in the Church of England. Life coaching and counselling skills are endemic to her work. Her particular interest has always been the encouragement of personal growth and the development of innate talents and skills. She has spent a lifetime working to enable people to realise potential, particularly those in the musical profession.
In addition to her professional musicianship and her leadership and communications skills, she has an ability “think outside the box" alongside a passion to provide performing opportunities, especially operatic ones, and especially for young professional singers.
Zoe is an experienced performer, creative designer and events manager. As an author, her first book What the Wind Saw: Short Stories from the Heart of Hertfordshire (2022) and her debut novel Hope is Daffodil Bright (2023), both published by The Endless Bookcase in April 2022.
Coming from an arts background focusing on literature, theatre and art history (French and History BA Hons Exeter, Victorian Studies MA, Birkbeck University of London) Zoe has worked in the areas of product development, designing and delivering training courses and corporate strategy in the private and public sectors as well as small businesses.
As an events manager she has lead the Music and Performing Arts Team in the Welwyn Garden Centenary Foundation’s birthday celebrations for the town and was responsible for overseeing a programme of events that involves all areas of the performing art, including performers of all ages and ability and raises the profile of live entertainment in the community.
Zoe loves working with the talented Felici performers on diverse creative musical events. She is delighted that her love of singing and event organising enables funds to be raised for national and local charities. Singing the role of Zerlina in the Felici Opera's production in the Marble Hall inside Hatfield House has been just one of the highlights of the journey so far!