Michael Chance

Biography

Born: March 7, 1955; Penn, Buckinghamshire  
Michael Chance is a leading British countertenor, in worldwide demand for male alto parts in opera, and as a recital, concert, and recording artist. He was a choral scholar at King's College, Cambridge -- an adult-voice singer at the famous Choir of King's College Cambridge, receiving a full scholarship for singing daily services in the College Chapel during the school term. His major subject at Cambridge was English, but he received thorough Read more musical and vocal training as a matter of course as a choral scholar.

After graduation, he studied voice with Rupert Bruce Lockhart. His operatic debut was in the Buxton festival, where he sang the part of Apollo in Ronald Eyre's production of Cavalli's Giasone in 1983. He was a member of Kent Opera for three seasons. In 1985, his European debut was in Lyon, as Andronico in Handel's Tamerlano (1985).

He rapidly established a strong reputation. He is one of the newer sort of countertenor, whose vocal production is well supported and natural-sounding. As the bulk of the countertenor repertory is in Baroque opera, he has sung Tolomeo in Handel's Giulio Cesare, Ottone in Handel's Agrippina and Monteverdi's L'incoronazione di Poppea, and as Orpheus in both the Gluck and Monteverdi operas.

However, he is equally admired for his performances in newer operas featuring countertenors, and his roles in twentieth century opera include Oberon in Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream, the Voice of Apollo in the same composer's Death in Venice, the Military Governor in Judith Weir's A Night at the Chinese Opera, and in Harrison Birtwistle's The Second Mrs. Kong. The latter two parts were written for him, for he is active in promoting new works. Composers he has worked with include Alexander Goehr, Richard Rodney Bennett, John Tavener, Anthony Powers, Tan Dun, and Elvis Costello.

He has sung at major opera houses such as the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, La Scala of Milan, at Covent Garden in London, and in opera houses in New York, Paris, Amsterdam, Lisbon, and Sydney.

Chance has made over 50 recordings, including the Grammy Award-winning release of Handel's Semele with John Nelson conducting. Other recordings include Mozart's Ascanio in Alba, Goehr's The Death of Moses, and Rolf's Carmina burana as well as the major oratorios and choral works of Handel and Bach. He appears in major festivals, such as the Glyndebourne Summer Opera, the Edinburgh Festival, the Salzburg Festival, and the Aix-en-Provence Festival. His concert appearances have taken him to major cities of Europe, the United Kingdom, North America, Japan, and Australia.

As a chamber recitalist he often works with the Baroque viol ensemble Fretwork and with Trevor Pinnock and the English Concert. He teaches at the Royal College of Music as a Visiting Professor. Read less
Countertenor Duets & Solos - Purcell, Blow / Bowman, Chance
Release Date: 04/08/2014   Label: Helios  
Catalog: 55447   Number of Discs: 1
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Countertenors - James Bowman, Michael Chance, Andreas Scholl
Release Date: 10/28/2008   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 4391   Number of Discs: 1
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Monteverdi: L'incoronazione Di Poppea / Rousset, Grant Murphy, Chance
Release Date: 11/18/2008   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 925   Number of Discs: 2
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Tavener: Fall & Resurrection / Hickox, Rozario, Chance
Release Date: 04/28/2009   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 841   Number of Discs: 1
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Browse 26-50 of 156 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Purcell: Dido And Aeneas, The Indian Queen / Hogwood, Bott, Kirkby, Ainsley, Thomas
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001650902 Release Date: 03/13/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  Emma Kirkby,  Gerald Finley,  Thomas Williams,  Catherine Bott  ... 
    Conductor:  Christopher Hogwood
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music Chorus,  Academy of Ancient Music Chamber Ensemble,  Academy of Ancient Music
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  • 27.
    Bach: Cantatas Bwv 27, 34, 41, 56, 82, 206, 207a, Motets
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 976758 Release Date: 03/06/2012   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Christoph Prégardien,  Peter Kooy,  Ruth Ziesak,  Michael Chance  ... 
    Conductor:  Frieder Bernius,  Gustav Leonhardt,  Frans Brüggen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Choir,  Concerto Cologne,  Tölz Boys Choir  ... 
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  • 28.
    Bach: Easter Cantatas / Koopman, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra
    Label: Challenge   Catalog: 72231 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Christoph Prégardien,  Paul Agnew,  Kai Wessel,  Sibylla Rubens  ... 
    Conductor:  Ton Koopman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra,  Amsterdam Baroque Choir
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  • 29.
    Choral Classics - Palestrina: Masses
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94266 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Giovanni Palestrina
    Performer:  Brian Etheridge,  Stephen Roberts,  Gordon Jones,  Michael George  ... 
    Conductor:  Mark Brown,  Bruno Turner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Pro Cantione Antiqua
    CD: $24.99
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  • 30.
    The Decca Sound [50-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001619902 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Manuel de Falla,  Claude Debussy,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Enrique Granados  ... 
    Performer:  Teresa Berganza,  Alfredo Campoli,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Cecilia Bartoli  ... 
    Conductor:  Ernest Ansermet,  Ataulfo Argenta,  Anatole Fistoulari,  Vladimir Ashkenazy  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $175.49
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  • 31.
    Shakespeare - Come Again, Sweet Love / Daniel Taylor
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 72722 Release Date: 06/28/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henry Purcell,  Edward Johnson,  Robert Jones,  Thomas Robinson  ... 
    Performer:  Daniel Taylor,  Emma Kirkby,  Elizabeth Kenny,  Jacob Heringman  ... 
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  • 32.
    Bach: Christmas Oratorio / Herreweghe, Collegium Vocale
    Label: Virgin Classics   Catalog: 96334 Release Date: 05/03/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Barbara Schlick,  Michael Chance,  Howard Crook,  Peter Kooy
    Conductor:  Philippe Herreweghe
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Collegium Vocale
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  • 33.
    Bach: St. Matthew Passion / Kirkby, Chance, Cleobury [3 Cds+dvd]
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94126 Release Date: 04/19/2011   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Michael Chance,  Rogers Covey-Crump,  Michael George,  David Thomas  ... 
    Conductor:  Stephen Cleobury
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Brandenburg Consort,  Cambridge King's College Choir
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  • 34.
    Purcell: Odes / Pinnock, The English Concert And Choir
    Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog: 427663 Release Date: 04/07/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  Michael Chance,  Tim Wilson,  Stephen Richardson,  Jennifer Smith  ... 
    Conductor:  Trevor Pinnock
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Concert,  English Concert Choir
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  • 35.
    Bach: St. Matthew Passion / Cleobury, Chance, Hill, Kirkby, King's College Choir
    Label: House Of Classics   Catalog: 220305 Release Date: 01/25/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Michael George,  Martyn Hill,  Emma Kirkby,  Rogers Covey-Crump  ... 
    Conductor:  Stephen Cleobury
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Brandenburg Consort,  Cambridge King's College Choir
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  • 36.
    Bach: Sonatas For Viola Da Gamba And Harpsichord, Arias / Pandolfo, Hunninger
    Label: Glossa   Catalog: 920411 Release Date: 12/21/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Paolo Pandolfo,  Markus Hunninger,  Harry Van der Kamp,  Michael Chance  ... 
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  • 37.
    Buxtehude: Membra Jesu Nostri, Laudate Pueri Dominum / Kirkby, Thomas, Fretwork, Purcell Quartet
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 775 Release Date: 11/16/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Dietrich Buxtehude,  Matthias Weckmann
    Performer:  Peter Harvey,  Charles Daniels,  Emma Kirkby,  Michael Chance  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Fretwork,  Purcell Quartet
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  • 38.
    Bach Edition - Complete Works Of J. S. Bach
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94050 Release Date: 09/14/2010   Number of Discs: 157
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Christine Schornsheim,  Dmitri Sitkovetsky,  Menno Van Delft,  Mark Lubotsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Pieter-Jan Belder,  Robert Haydon Clark,  Burkhard Glaetzner,  Peter Schreier  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Musica Amphion,  Consort of London,  Leipzig New Bach Collegium Musicum  ... 
    CD: $168.99
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  • 39.
    Bach: Weihnachts-Oratorium / Herreweghe, Schlick, Chance, Crook, Kooy
    Label: Virgin Classics   Catalog: 90781 Release Date: 04/22/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Howard Crook,  Barbara Schlick,  Michael Chance,  Peter Kooy
    Conductor:  Philippe Herreweghe
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Collegium Vocale
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  • 40.
    The Handel Collection / The Sixteen [12-CD Set]
    Label: Coro   Catalog: 16080 Release Date: 04/13/2010   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel
    Performer:  Jonathan Best,  Matthew Vine,  Michael George,  Catherine Wyn-Rogers  ... 
    Conductor:  Harry Christophers
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen,  The Symphony of Harmony and Invention
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  • 41.
    Purcell: Songs / Michael Chance, Florilegium
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 93937 Release Date: 03/09/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  Michael Chance
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Florilegium Ensemble
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  • 42.
    Con Gratia, et Maniera / Galatea
    Label: Stradivarius   Catalog: 33822 Release Date: 02/09/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bartolemé de Selma y Salaverde,  Giovanni Battista Bovicel,  Florentio Maschera,  Giorgio Mainerio  ... 
    Performer:  Michael Chance,  Gianluca Capuano,  Bruce Dickey,  Craig Marchitelli  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Galatea,  Galatia (Ensemble)
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  • 43.
    Maxwell Davies: Taverner / Knussen, Asbury, Bbc Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Nmc   Catalog: 157 Release Date: 11/24/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Maxwell Davies
    Performer:  John Graham Hall,  Peter Hall,  Peter Sidhom,  Michael Chance  ... 
    Conductor:  Stefan Asbury,  Oliver Knussen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra,  New London Children's Choir,  London Voices  ... 
    Recommendation
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  • 44.
    Label: Nmc   Catalog: 954236 Release Date: 11/24/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Maxwell Davies
    Performer:  Martyn [Tenor Vocals] Hill,  Fiona Kimm,  Peter Sidhom,  David Wilson-Johnson  ... 
    Conductor:  Oliver Knussen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts,  Fretwork
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  • 45.
    Musica Sacra - Bach: St. Matthew Passion / Cleobury
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 93941 Release Date: 11/10/2009   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Emma Kirkby,  Michael Chance,  Rogers Covey-Crump,  Michael George
    Conductor:  Stephen Cleobury
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge King's College Choir,  Brandenburg Consort
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  • 46.
    Purcell: The Fairy Queen
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 4686981 Release Date: 10/26/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  Sylvia McNair,  Barbara Bonney,  Robert Holl,  Michael Chance  ... 
    Conductor:  Nikolaus Harnoncourt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Concentus Musicus,  Arnold Schoenberg Choir
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  • 47.
    The World Of Ian Bostridge
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 467788 Release Date: 10/21/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Michael Nyman,  Igor Stravinsky,  Benjamin Britten,  Gerald Finzi  ... 
    Performer:  Catherine Bott,  Ian Bostridge,  Hilary Summers,  Rosemary Hardy  ... 
    Conductor:  Dominique Debart,  Reinbert De Leeuw,  Sir Colin Davis,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Normandy Orchestral Ensemble,  Schönberg Ensemble,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 48.
    England My England - Music From Original Soundtrack
    Label: Voiceprint   Catalog: 1572 Release Date: 09/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  David Blackadder,  Michael Chance,  James Bowman,  Jennifer Smith  ... 
    Conductor:  John Eliot Gardiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Baroque Soloists
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  • 49.
    Henry Purcell - England, My England
    Label: Tony Palmer Films   Catalog: 1475 Release Date: 09/15/2009  
    Composer:  Henry Purcell
    Performer:  Paul Agnew,  Michael Chance,  Nancy Argenta,  Lynne Dawson  ... 
    Conductor:  John Eliot Gardiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Monteverdi Choir,  English Baroque Soloists
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  • 50.
    Bach: Cantatas Bwv 140 & 147 / John Eliot Gardiner
    Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog: 431809 Release Date: 08/31/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Stephen Varcoe,  Anthony Rolfe Johnson,  Michael Chance,  Ruth Holton
    Conductor:  John Eliot Gardiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Monteverdi Choir,  English Baroque Soloists
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