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Careful planning and biding time

Kate Royal’s rapid rise and busy varied schedule may look like someone on a ‘fast track’ scheme, but it has taken some tough decisions, learning by experience and a lot of careful planning to achieve. Between performances at Glyndebourne, Kate told Rachel Dyson about her journey so far and her plans for the future.

How would you describe your time at Guildhall?

I had a fantastic six years at Guildhall. At the start I found it quite overwhelming but I realised pretty quickly that it was a competitive world even at that stage. I got my head down and worked hard. And in my last two years there I started working with Rudolf Piernay who is still my teacher and mentor. Once you have left the college environment you suddenly realise how much you took for granted and how much all that coaching and tuition is actually worth! There were some elements to the course that I


ignored (talks about tax and organising finances etc) and I wish now I had attended!

When you left the Guildhall you went straight to the National Opera Studio, then you won the Kathleen Ferrier Award and two years later you signed an exclusive contract with EMI Classics… Was that how you expected your career to start?

I went to the NOS as I didn’t feel ready to go into the profession. As anyone at college will know there is no ‘fast track’ though it might seem like there

is looking at my CV. In fact everything has been carefully planned and an awful lot of work turned down in order to keep producing what I hope is high quality work. I have been very lucky but I’ve also worked very hard.

What impact did winning the Kathleen Ferrier Award have on you?

The Ferrier win was a great stepping stone and gave me the confidence I needed to make that leap into the profession. It was a night I will never forget as it really did feel like a turning point for me.

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