Many talented singers perform in the Lark Chamber Opera ensemble, these include: Emma Jayakumar (Composer), Tommaso Pollio (Composer), Harriet Marshall (Soprano), Ileana Rinaldi (Mezzo-Soprano), Robert Hofmann (Bass), Jonathan Brain (Tenor), Joshua Webster (Percussion), and Shubhadra Young (Soprano).
Behind the scenes, you may also find many other dedicated collaborators, including: Rachel McDonald (Director), Andries Wiedemann (Choreographer), Matthew McVeigh (Designer), Iona McAuley (Designer), Claire Lenyk (Development), and Rowcliffe Browne (Web Developer).
Emma Jayakumar (nee Worthington-Lees) and Tommaso Pollio are co-directors of Lark Chamber Opera and long time friends and colleagues.
Composer / Director
Australian born soprano Emma Jayakumar recently returned to Australia from London where she studied Opera at the Royal Academy of Music gaining a Graduate Diploma of Opera and performing the roles of Nella in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi and Lucia in Benjamin Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia. After graduation from the Academy Emma performed the role of Miss Wordsworth in the British Youth Opera’s 2007 production of Benjamin Britten’s Albert Herring in which a Times review praised her as “a particularly good Miss Wordsworth, twittering away in Emma Jayakumar’s silvery soprano”.
In 2008 Emma moved onto a year-long tour with the acclaimed Armonico Consort in which she performed the roles of Cherubino and Susanna in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro and Belinda in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, which toured to major Summer Festivals in Brighton, Norwich, Warwick, Chichester and further afield to festivals in Ireland and Israel.
Emma has also performed at the prestigious Vienna State Opera as Zweites Blumenmaedchen in Wagner’s Parsifal as winner of the Opera Foundation Australia’s Vienna State Opera Award in 2004 and has been the recipient of several prestigious scholarships and competitions including the Herald Sun Aria (2005), the OAC Dame Joan Sutherland Scholarship (2006) and the Meistersinger Audience and Faculty vote award in Graz, Austria where she studied at the American Institute of Music in 2003.
For West Australian Opera Emma recently toured to the Kimberleys for the Opera in Education programme and the Boab Festival in Derby.
Emma studied voice at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (Masters Music) and the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (Bachelor of Music) where she performed the leading roles in all school productions including Madame Herz in Der Schauspieldirektor, Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro, Susannah in Susannah, Apollo in Il Parnaso Confuso, Poppea in The Coronation of Poppea and Ophelia in The Falling.
Emma recently co- founded the new chamber opera ensemble Lark Chamber Opera with her long time colleague, renowned pianist Tommaso Pollio, for whom she has also composed and devised original chamber music for children.
Orchestrator / Accompanist / Director
Tommaso Pollio graduated with honours in piano performance from the University Of
Western Australia School Of Music and later continued his studies at the Cincinnati
School of Music in the United States.
He has developed a fine reputation as a chamber musician with a variety of ensembles such as The Western Australian & Australian Youth Orchestras, the Western Australian Opera & Ballet Companies and Opera Australia.
Tommaso’s many scholarships have included the IBM National Music Camp Award (1992), The Ralph Thompson Memorial Prize (1998) and the Cincinnati School of Music Scholarship and Teachers’ Award (1995).
In 1998 and 1999 after a brief period of study in London, Tommaso toured Italy with The Trio Di Romanza performing in Rome, Frisa, Atessa, Ravenna and the Island of Ischia (off the Coast of Naples).
He has been a part of the faculty for the WA Academy of Performing Arts at Edith
Cowan University from 1994 – 2006 and has recorded several recitals both as soloist
and accompanist both for the Young Australia and Sunday Live Programmes. In 1999 Tommaso affiliated himself with two prestigious schools: Penhros and Perth College running chamber music master classes with the Enaria Ensemble a piano trio which later developed into the Darlington Piano Trio.
In the European summer 2000, Tommaso was invited to be part of the Lucca Opera
Festival, Italy working as repetitieur to a production of Così Fan Tutte as well as
performing in recital at Castelmare, Naples.
As well as keeping up a busy schedule of teaching and freelance accompanying, Tommaso had co-founded the Chamber Opera Group Millio Opera with the acclaimed director John Milson preparing 1 act operas for WAAPA (2000), Terrace Proms (2000, 2001, 2003), Perth International Arts Festival (2003), and The ABC Sunday Live Radio Opera Broadcasts (1999-2003).
His latest venture is the Lark Chamber Opera, a new ensemble of West Australian Artists committed to bringing classical music and Opera to a wider audience, beginning with young people. In 2011 Lark Performed to over three thousand school children in their first ever Metro tour.