Classics at Kippen

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The brainchild of Kathleen McKellar Ferguson, singing teacher at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, “Classics at Kippen” was born in 2012. Its purpose is threefold – to provide much needed performing experience for young music students from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, to raise money for charity and to provide a high-class concert performance which makes for a lovely community event for the people of Kippen and further afield. To date “Classics at Kippen” has raised over £20,000 for charities including Crossroads,” Raucous Rossini”, Erskine and Kippen Parish Church.


The next Classics at Kippen Concert will take place in Kippen Parish church on Saturday 23 March at 7.30pm. This will take the form of a duet recital by two former students of Kathleen’s from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Soprano Hannah Sandison and mezzo soprano Annabella Ellis have both sung at Glyndebourne and are forging very promising and successful international singing careers. The concert will include light classics and some “fun stuff”! Tickets can be obtained via our website  , where you can also be added to our mailing list, or you can contact Kathleen at

unknownAward winning soprano Hannah Sandison is a graduate of The Royal College of Music International Opera School and The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland where she won The Governers Recital Prize. She was the recipient of several awards throughout her studies, including from the AHRC, The Countess of Munster Musical Trust, and Help Musicians UK.

Hannah has since gone on to sing for English Touring Opera, Mid Wales Opera and most recently Glyndebourne Festival Opera where she made her debut as The Cockerel in The Cunning Little Vixen, and also covered the role of Helena (A Midsummer Night’s Dream). Other operatic roles include Fiordiligi (Cosi Fan Tutte), Micaela (Carmen), Drusilla (L’incoronazione di Poppea), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), and Metella (La Vie Parisienne). As a busy oratorio and concert performer, recital venues include the London Handel Festival, The Oxford Lieder Festival, at the Pushkin House, London, and The Rachmaninov Hall, Moscow. She has performed Gala’s with the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, two Gala’s in Corfu, and Mahler’s Second Symphony with the London Mahler Orchestra. Hannah has performed as a soloist at St. Martin’s in the Field, the Royal Festival Hall, The Sage, Gateshead and The Royal Albert Hall.

She has performed live on BBC Radio Scotland and BBC Radio 3 In Tune. She looks forward to several concerts including Elijah (Mendelssohn), and a Haydn Harmoniemesse. In 2019 she will sing Tatiana (Eugine Onegin) and Lisa (Pique Dame) with the Milton Keynes City Orchestra.

English bio

Annabella Ellis was born in Norwich, Norfolk. At the age of six Annabella commenced her studies at Central School of Dancing and Performing Arts, where she specialised in theatre and dance. She continued her education at Guildhall School of Music & Drama, gained her Master of Arts at the Royal Academy of Music, and completed her Master of Music in Opera Studies at the Royal Conservatoire Scotland.

Annabella has participated in Masterclasses with Dimitr Vdovin, Elizabeth Vidal, Jennifer Larmore, Irina Gavrilovici, Kathryn Harries, Helmut Deutsch, Christoph Prégardien, Rachel Nicholls, Benjamin Luxon, Edith Weins, Susan Youens and Emma Kirby.
In 2012 Annabella is awarded First Prize in the Competition “Norfolk Young Musician”, in 2014 she is a finalist in the Maureen Lehane competition and obtains Second Prize in the English Song and Third Prize in the Isabella Jay Aria competitions at the Royal Academy of Music.

From the opera repertoire she has performed Rosina (Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Orlovsky (Die Fledermaus), Fiordiligi (Cosí fan Tutte), Mrs Coyle (Owen Wingrave), Mercédes
(Carmen), Tonina (Prima la music e poi le parole), Sirene (Rinaldo), Drusilla/Amor (L’incoronazione di Poppea), Belinda/ Second Witch/ Sailor (Dido and Aeneas) in festivals like Dorset Opera, Longborough Festival Opera, British Youth Opera or Glyndebourne Festival Opera.

In the realm of the symphonic repertoire she recently made her French début singing alto solo in Mozart’s Requiem at the Halle aux Grains in Toulouse and has also appeared as alto solo in Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, Bach’s C Minor Mass, amongst others. Notable recital performances include performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, in the Sighisoara Music Festival, Britten 100 and at the Wigmore Hall.