Welsh operatic legend Bryn Terfel has claimed that there is not enough support for young musicians in the UK compared to its European neighbours.
Speaking to the Western Mail, the bass-baritone singer has revealed his frustration at the lack of support given to artists early in their careers.
Two years ago, he set up the Terfel Foundation to help young performers. The charitable body provides financial help to subsidise living costs and tuition debts to allow them to focus fully on finding jobs in the industry.
“I started the Terfel Foundation because I saw talented singers coming out of college with huge debts and being forced to take the first job offered,” he told the news provider. “It’s hard to comprehend how one could concentrate whole-heartedly on beginning a career with monetary worries always in the back of one’s mind.”
The Welsh National Opera star explained that it was important the young people exiting education are viewed as the future of opera singing in the country.
“People tend to think about past performers when it comes to something like opera,” he said. “The new generation has to inspire new audiences. I feel I gave it a good crack of the whip but we need new blood.”
The comments come as the star’s home country celebrates St David’s Day, with events staged in Wales and across the world.
Parades are taking place in Cardiff and Wrexham as part of the festivities, while the special event is also being celebrated as far away as China and New York.
Terfel is firmly of the belief that large events, such as the forthcoming National Eisteddfod (July 29th-August 6th) or St David’s Day, provide a good stage for budding singers and musicians in Wales.
“You are judged and adjudicated rigorously on style, intonation and pitch. It’s a highly-demanding platform,” he said of the Eisteddfod celebrations.
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