About Michael

Michael Goldthorpe was born in the mediaeval city of York. He was educated at Nunthorpe Grammar School, sang at St Michael-le-Belfey (opposite the Minster) and later studied at Trinity College Cambridge where he served in the OTC and the college choir whilst reading for an English degree. He then moved to London where he studied at King's College for a Post Graduate Certificate of Education, and taught in various schools whilst studying further at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, before joining the BBC Singers and the music profession.

After his début at the Purcell Room in 1970, Michael travelled widely with Intimate Opera, The London Opera Group, Kent Opera, The Chelsea Opera Group, The English Bach Festival, L'Atelier Lyrique de Tourcoing and The Royal Opera Company Covent Garden. He broadcast recitals and concerts for the BBC and stations in Europe and Singapore. He became closely identified with the French Baroque revival of the seventies and eighties, making many records and television appearances.

He specialised in difficult high tenor parts by such composers as Bach, Rameau, Rossini, Janáček and Britten. His associations with Scandinavia, particularly Iceland, Norway and The Faroe Islands have taken him many times for concerts in Northern latitudes. In 1986 he made his American stage debut in the Miami International Festival's production of Liszt's only opera, Don Sanche, which he also recorded for the BBC. The performance of Lucrezia Borgia filmed in 1980 at Covent Garden for BBC Television, in which he sang with Alfedo Kraus and Dame Joan Sutherland, has been released on DVD. He is also featured on the Scottish Early Music Festival's video of Cavalli's La Didone.

Michael has always been interested in light music. He has appeared regularly in BBC Radio 2 programmes such as Among Your Souvenirs and Friday Night is Music Night. He has taken principal roles for The World of Gilbert and Sullivan and has performed with them on the QE2. He sang many times for Max Jaffa on the Spa at Scarborough. In 1994 Michael was awarded a Wingate Scholarship to research, catalogue, record and perform 19th Century British and American Ballads. This led to the formation of his touring group,
The Bold Balladiers.

He has taught for London University, The London College of Music and Trinity College of Music. He has taught voice at both Oxford and Cambridge Universities, and still teaches singing privately in London and Hampshire. He helped to devise the syllabus for the Associated Board’s Mentoring Scheme, and has directed courses and classes for Dartington and Benslow. He is particularly interested in cambiata - the changing voices of boys and girls in adolescence, but is equally at home with mature voices and choral directing. He was Musical Director of Lymington Choral Society from 2006 until 2020.

Interests beyond music are the theatre, literature, foreign languages, travel and computing.

To hear sound tracks please click here