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WAO Playlist Series XVIII Curated by Chelsea Kluga

Wesfarmers Young Artist Chelsea Kluga shared her playlist while she is busy preparing for her role as the Chief Counselor /Death in our upcoming production of The Nightingale. Read about and stream Chelsea's playlist below which includes music from the likes of Judy Garland as well as classic arias from Tosca, Cavalleria Rusticana and The Nightginale's composer Imant Raminsh. You can see Chelse in The Nightingale at His Majesty's Theatre from October 3-4. Book your tickets now. 


Khachaturian - Spartacus Suite No. 2 Adagio 

I was introduced to this piece when I was a Clarinetist at WAAPA playing with the Faith Court Orchestra before I had changed to study opera. We were conducted by the wonderful Peter Tanfield and listening back I can still remember which friends were playing, the atmosphere and energy of the room and even the amount of bars I had to count before the first clarinet entry! 

Dawn Upshaw - Three Songs for Soprano and Orchestra - How Slow the Wind composed by Osvaldo Golijov 

Many of us have experienced a life-changing performance that stays with us for years to come and this piece was one of those moments for me. I was still a clarinetist at the time but when this piece started I knew that singing was all I wanted to be doing. The ACO with Dawn Upshaw created something so special that evening and I’m grateful I had the opportunity to witness it.

Imant Raminsh - The Great Sea 

We’re are in such a privileged position at West Australian Opera to be able to be back in the theatre creating and performing, and I’m very excited to be singing in the upcoming production of The Nightingale by Imant Raminsh. I was unfamiliar with his work so I’ve been listening to a lot of his choral music featuring orchestra to understand his compositional style.  This choice was one of his more theatrical compositions and will give listeners a sneak peek of what they can expect from The Nightingale. 

Brigit Nilsson - Liebestod 

Utterly sublime and completely transcendental. I can’t imagine what it would have been like to sit in the theatre and witness this live.

Tosca - Tre sbirri...Una carozza...Presto - Te Deum 

I’ve been in the West Australian Opera chorus since 2016 and during that time I’ve had the opportunity to work with such great singers in Perth and sing some incredible music. I always feel an immense gratitude for what I do during moments like these on stage, just over a minute of singing but utterly electric to be part of.

Fiorenza Cosotto - Cavalleria Rusticana - Inneggiamo 

Much like Liebestod, this piece speaks for itself. Her technical mastery of the voice is unlike any other mezzo-soprano.

Elena Obratsova - A Dark Red Shawl 

While I love all the big operatic repertoire of Elena Obratsova, her two albums of Russian folksongs are enchanting. This song is one that I always come back to, so simple in its melody and harmony but she makes it completely magical.

Lawrence Brownlee - All Night, All Day 

This song was featured during the live-streamed concert ‘Giving Voice’, a concert to celebrate diversity put together by tenor Lawrence Brownlee and the Houston Grand Opera (which is still available on youtube). It perfectly encapsulates the grace and ease Brownlee possesses as an artist.

Judy Garland - If Love Were All 

It took a lot of restraint to pick just one song from this album of Judy Garland live at Carnegie Hall! Every song is perfection, but this heartbreaking rendition of the Noël Coward classic is something else.  In 2016 after finishing my masters in New York I delayed my flight home so I could see the concert ‘Rufus Does Judy’, an identical tribute concert featuring Rufus Wainwright. Being in Carnegie Hall and hearing the same orchestrations and setlist was so moving. It made me fall in love with the original album all over again

Rufus Wainwright - Peaceful Afternoon 

This piece was a new song by Rufus Wainwright that he premiered during the Perth Arts Festival this year. He has always been a favourite artist of mine, and that evening I was hoping to hear songs from his album ‘Rufus Does Judy' (worth a listen if only for the hilarious stories and anecdotes between songs). As
is always the case, the song I had never heard before was my favourite of the night. With such frank and honest lyrics and such a beautiful sentiment, it had all of us in tears. For the next week, I was searching youtube to watch more live versions and sending it to all my friends.