Music at Woodhouse 

15 anniversary year

Monika Saunders
Artistic director

Monika Saunders founded the Woodhouse Music in 2000 and the Woodhouse Opera in 2005.

Having studied piano in her youth, after a non-musical career path, Monika returned to her biggest passion first as a producer.

In 2007 she debuted as a stage director. Works directed by her include: Dido and Aeneas by Purcell, The Cunning Little Vixen by Janacek, Hansel und Gretel by Humperdinck, Acis and Galathea by Handel, Cosi fan Tutte, Don Giovanni and Le Nozze di Figaro by Mozart just to name a few.

Monika has made it her life's work to creating opportunities and a platform for young professional singers and musicians at the beginning of their careers.

Marcio da Silva

Born in 1983, in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Marcio da Silva began his musical studies at the age of 9 with piano lessons and choral singing. As a young boy-soprano he performed as a soloist in Germany, Italy and Brazil for audiences of over 32.000 people.

In 1998 he graduated from the Phoenix Boys Choir, (USA), came second at the Arizona State Singing Competition and performed the Ave Maria by Schubert with pianist Nelson Freire.

At the age of 15 he founded the vocal ensemble Grupo Angels. The group was awarded the Silver Diploma at the Cäcilia Choir Days Competition in Limburg, Germany and was finalist at the II Funarte Choral Competition in Brazil.

In 2001 he became assistant musical director to the Sons de Minas Allegretto children´s choir working with Maestro Carlos Alberto Pinto Fonseca.

In 2006 he received his Diplôme d´Éstudes Musicales in voice from the Conservatory of Toulouse, in France, where he also studied Choral conducting with Prof. Rolandas Muleika and Orchestral conducting with Prof. Stephan Cardon.

In April 2008 he joined the Musikhochschule Freiburg, Germany, as an orchestral conducting student of Prof. Scott Sandmeier. In July 2011 he obtained his Bachelor of Music. 

In 2008 he was awarded the fourth prize at the Giuseppe Patané Conducting Competition in Grosseto, Italy.

Marcio da Silva was one of the three conductors to take part in the 2012 London Symphony Orchestra Conducting Master Class with Sir Colin Davis.

He is also the musical Director of the Grange Choral Society, Hastings Philharmonic Choir, Newham Youth Orchestra, Woodhouse Opera Festival and Ensemble OrQuesta.

In July 2013 he obtained his masters in orchestral conducting  at the Royal College of Music, in London, UK, in the class of professors Peter Stark and Robin O´Neill.

In November 2014 he was one of the three finalists at the Princess Astrid International Conducting Competition in Trondheim, Norway with the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra.

He also acts as a composer. His repertoire includes choral a capella pieces, art songs with piano accompaniment and a Te Deum for soloists, chorus and orchestra.

Stephanie Gurga
Assistant music director (Cenerentola, Falstaff)

American pianist and harpsichordist Stephanie Gurga completed studies in piano and organ at DePauw University, Indiana, and at the Ecole Normale de Musique, in Paris, France, before specializing in performance practice on historical keyboards.  She went on to complete a "Kunsterlische Ausbildung" in harpsichord performance, as well as a master's degree in fortepiano performance, from the Musikhochschule Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany.  Featured internationally as soloist, recitalist, accompanist, and chamber musician, on harpsichord, fortepiano, and the modern piano, she is also on staff as accompanist at the Haute Ecole de Musique Vaud Valais Fribourg, in Lausanne and Sion, Switzerland, since 2010.

Miklós Veszprémi
  repetiteur (Cenerentola/Falstaff)

Miklós Veszprémi (*1994) received his initial musical education in Barcelona. Having moved to Basel in 2001, he entered the Klasse für Studienvorbereitung of the Hochschule für Musik at age 15. Among his teachers were Jean-Jacques Dünki and Sviatoslav Pochekin for piano as well as Roland Moser for composition.

In Switzerland, he won the national music competition’s first prizes for composition, piano duo and piano solo. Beginning at age 14, he performed as a soloist with orchestras in Basel (Mozart Concerto No. 27) at the Menuhin Festival Gstaad (Grieg Concerto) and most recently Miranda’s Concertino as well as Manuel de Falla’s Harpsichord Concerto with members of the Royal College of Music orchestras in London. After graduating from high school early and cum laude in 2011, he began his music and piano studies at the RCM, where he has been involved in much chamber music, studying piano with Niel Immelman and composition with Harris Kittos. His compositions have been published by Pizzicato Verlag and lately have won the first prize at the EPTA UK Composers Competition. Currently, he is on an exchange at Yale University, studying music at Yale School of Music, piano with Boris Berman and molecular biochemistry with Dieter Söll, thanks to support of the Fritz Gerber Stiftung. His studies are further promoted by the Schweizerische Studienstiftung, which offers extra-curricular lectures and seminars on eclectic topics.