Héloïse Werner is a performer particularly interested in music as drama and music for the stage, experimenting with different genres and techniques.
Héloïse is singer and co-director for award-wining contemporary quartet The Hermes Experiment (clarinet, soprano voice, harp and double bass), winners of the Tunnell Trust Awards 2016, Park Lane Group Young Artists 2015-16, UK Young Artists 2014 and winners of Nonclassical’s Battle of the Bands 2014. The ensemble regularly commissions new works as well as creating their own innovative arrangements and venturing into live free improvisation. The group also strives to create a platform for cross-disciplinary collaboration: in June 2015, they created a ‘musical exhibition’ with photographer Thurstan Redding, and in September 2016, they developed a new interpretation of Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale during an Aldeburgh Music Residency. Reducing the play to an hour’s duration in collaboration with director Nina Brazier, composer Kim Ashton & five actors, The Hermes Experiment become part of the drama alongside a wonderful group of actors. The show will première in London this winter, and is supported by Arts Council England, the RVW Trust, Britten-Pears Foundation and Hinrichsen Foundation. Recent praise for The Hermes Experiment: “The performance was meticulously nuanced, witty and chic.” The Times // “This clever mix of instruments is more versatile than you might first think” The Observer // “The combination of harp, clarinet, voice and double bass is not one you hear every day, but in the right hands it works brilliantly. The Hermes Experiment who sport this line-up have in a short few years commissioned prodigiously for it, opening a whole new expressive world” Evening Standard
Together with composer Jonathan Woolgar and director Emily Burns, Héloïse is currently working on Scenes from the End, a new one-woman opera about grief which premièred this summer at the Camden & Edinburgh Fringe Festivals, and will run at the Tristan Bates Theatre in December 2016 (“extraordinary” Classic FM, “The 10 hottest tickets in town” Evening Standard, “Exceptional and breathtaking” Mumble, “wholly eye opening” The Metropolist, “wonderfully expressive” Edfringe review, “powerful” Fringe Biscuit, “well-acted, quirky and charming production” London Theatre 1).
Other recent operatic roles have included: Doctor in Maxwell Davies’ Kommilitonen! (Welsh National Youth Opera), Anya in Mannequin, a new one-woman video opera by Maria Vatenina (Tête à Tête Festival Opera), The Vixen in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen (CUOS) and Love in Gluck’s Orfeo (CCMS). She also plays Marie–Antoinette in a new punk opera The Crocodile of Old Kang Pow by Darren Berry (from Razorlight and the Penguin Cafe) due to open later this year.
Héloïse is a founding member (vocals/cello) of five-piece folk band The Coach House Company. In recent years, the band has performed at the National Portrait Gallery, Cecil Sharp House, Green Note in Camden, Ronnie Scott’s jazz club, London Folk Festival, Wilderness Festival, and has released two original EP discs: The Coach House Company (2014) and Maiden Tales (2016). She is also a founding member of new vocal ensemble SHARDS, who recently performed as part of Nils Frahm’s weekend festival ‘Possibly Colliding’ at the Barbican. Héloïse regularly plays with various other bands including The Amazing Devil (cello/vocals) and has recently recorded for Steve Devereaux (from The Voice UK) amongst others. As an ensemble singer, she regularly performs with choirs such as Polyphony, Philharmonia Voices, The Temple Singers and Armonico Consort.
Over the past few years, she has been very active in the production side of the musical and theatre life of London and Cambridge. This has included producing and musically directing The Spanish Tragedy by Thomas Kyd in King’s College Chapel, Cambridge (Marlowe Society), working at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre (in their music department), producing Philip Glass’ In The Penal Colony at the Arts Theatre (West End) for Shadwell Opera and producing, performing with, and writing/arranging the music for acclaimed sketch trio Minor Delays at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2014 (Gilded Balloon). She is currently Media & Marketing Manager for the Tippett Quartet.
Héloïse was born in Paris and was a member of the ‘Maîtrise de Radio France’ for six years. At the same time, she studied the cello at the Conservatoire Maurice Ravel with Valérie Aimard. She then read music at Clare College, Cambridge, where she was also a choral scholar under Graham Ross. At Cambridge, she studied composition with Giles Swayne for two years, and in 2011, won the Clare College Carol Competition. In 2009, she was awarded the ‘Creation Prize’ from the Conservatoire Maurice Ravel for her songs for piano and voice, which she performed as part of her cello final diploma. She is currently completing her studies with Alison Wells on the MA course at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.
For more details on current / past projects, click here.