Egyptian soprano Fatma Said among BBC Radio 3's 2016 'New Generation Artists'

Ahram Online , Thursday 1 Sep 2016

Fatma Said is the first musician from Egypt or the Arab World to be selected for the scheme to promote musical talent

Fatma Said
Fatma Said (Photo: courtesy of the artist)

Egyptian soprano Fatma Said is one of six musicians selected by BBC Radio 3 to take part in its New Generation Artist Scheme from 2016 to 2018.

The other musicians are the Amatis Piano Trio from the Netherlands, cellist Andrei Ionita from Romania, bass-baritone Ashley Riches from the UK, Calidore Quartet from the United States, and violist Eivind Holtsmark Ringstad from Norway.

The scheme supports the chosen artists for 18 months by showcasing their talent to listeners across the UK via a series of BBC Radio 3 broadcasts presented by Clemency Burton-Hill. Over the past 18 years the scheme has supported a number of artists who have gone on to become internationally recognised.

Launched in 1999, the programme aims at nurturing young musical talent from around the globe.

Said is the first musician from Egypt or the Arab World to take part in the programme.

The 25-year-old soprano has won a number of accolades, most recently the 8th Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition in Dublin in January.

Said's singing career took a serious turn when at the age of 14 she enrolled at the vocal studio of Neveen Allouba.

After graduating high school she went to Germany to continue her music studies and enrolled at the Hanns Eisler School of Music in Berlin, where she studied under Renate Faltin.

In 2011, Said won the second award at the 16th International Schuman Lied Contest, as well as the Grand Award at the Giulio Peroti International Opera Contest. In 2012, she won both first prize and the audience prize at the 7th Leyla Gencer Voice Competition that took place in Istanbul, Turkey.

She then decided to apply for a scholarship at the prestigious La Scala Academy in Milan. Having passed through four rounds of very competitive screenings, Said found herself in a group of 11 young talents chosen by the Academy from thousands of preliminary applicants.

She is also the first Egyptian singer to be accepted in this world-renowned institution. Said completed her studies last July, and is now preparing for her first lead role in La Scala, in Mozart's Magic Flute, scheduled to premier later this month.

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