Sophie Rashbrook is a writer, opera dramaturg, presenter and translator. She holds an MPhil in Russian Studies and a first-class BA (Hons) in French and Russian from Cambridge University, and spent a year at the St Petersburg Conservatoire studying the cello. As an opera director, her productions include Orpheus and Eurydice (Clare College Opera), The Sandman (Size Zero Opera at Tete a Tete Opera Festival), and The Fairy Queen Re-Imagined (West Road Concert Hall). She has worked as Assistant Director/Russian Interpreter at the Royal Opera House, Opera Comique Paris, and Theatre du Capitole Toulouse.
She was Dramaturg at Welsh National Opera from 2013-2016, delivering 60+ pre-performance talks annually to audiences across Wales and England, producing English subtitles for all productions, and as WNO Programme Editor from 2015-16, introduced audiences to new operas Figaro Gets a Divorce by Elena Langer and In Parenthesis by Iain Bell. She is the recipient of an Arts Council of Wales Research and Development grant (Seven Deadly Sins lecture-recital at Cardiff University).
Until December 2017, she worked as Chamber Music Manager at the Royal College of Music, London, where she forged partnerships with venues including the Tate Modern, Austrian Cultural Forum, and RADA, programmed a series of Russian chamber concerts for the Philharmonia’s Voices of Revolution series, and ran a composition project, Vienna Calling!, culminating in live performances across two time-zones, with the use of live-streaming technology.
Now newly embarking on a freelance career, she is the author of a play about the legendary set designer Ralph Koltai CBE. In collaboration with Director Polly Graham, the play has received work-in-progress showcases in Cardiff and London (funded by Arts Council of Wales and private donations), and is now undergoing further development.
Recent and future projects include working as an opera expert for the Glyndebourne Opera Cup (Sky Arts TV), pre-concert speaker at St David’s Hall for the CBSO, project manager for Garsington Opera, and writing a feature article on Prokofiev’s War and Peace for Welsh National Opera. She is a director on the board of Polly Graham’s opera company, LOUD CROWD. Other artistic interests and inspirations include: art song, cabaret, Angela Carter, Kurt Schwitters, fairy tales, Chagall, Kandinsky, and cucumber…
Photo credit: David Massey