ESO Committee 2022-2023:

President: Holly Gowen

Holly is in her final year of studies at the University of Edinburgh, reading French and Classics, and her fourth year of performance with ESO. She holds the position of President for the second time on the committee. After being Head of Choir at Rugby School, Holly completed two Eton Choral Courses, and now regularly records for the Rodolfus Foundation. She was selected as a final soloist for the Malvern Festival Chorus in 2018, performing extracts of Handel's Messiah. Last year she played the role of Hansel in ESO'S Hansel and Gretel. She now is the Alto choral scholar at Old Saint Paul's Episcopal Church, directed by John Kitchen, is part of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra's Young Singers Programme, and has vocal lessons with Irene Drummond. Dream role: anything in travesti, its so fun pretending to be a boy!

Secretary: Elizabeth Gibb

Elizabeth is a 4th year biochemistry student. This year she is excited to be the Secretary on the ESO committee. This will be her 4th year both singing with ESO and on committee. She has had some amazing singing opportunities while involved with ESO, including playing Gretel in last year's production of Hansel and Gretel, as well as getting to take part in the chorus and covering the part of Lola for our 2020 production of Cavalleria Rusticana. In 2019 she achieved her ARSM diploma and spent a year in the English national opera youth company, providing her with a great introduction into opera. Additionally she enjoyed singing in many different choirs and productions during her time at school.
Dream role: I have a lot of love for many different operas, but if I was to pick a dream role to sing it would have to be Tosca, it was the first opera I ever saw and I love the melodramatic and thrilling nature of this opera.

Treasurer: Claire Gilchrist

Claire is a fourth year medical student and in her fourth year with ESO. This year she is acting as treasurer on the committee. Claire has had much experience singing in choirs. Most recently she was part of NYCOS and the associated chamber choir, as well as holding a choral scholarship with Marchmont St Giles. She has a more limited experience in terms of opera but really enjoyed taking on the role of Gretel in last years production of Hansel and Gretel.

Dream role: Violetta from La Traviata

Publicity Manager: Ellen Macrae

This is Ellen's second year singing with ESO, last year performing the role of Sandman in Hansel and Gretel as well as designing the poster. This year she is also putting her creative skills to the test as the society’s publicity manager. She was introduced to opera through the Garsington Youth Company (2015-2021), and had her first lead role as “Dido” in her school’s production of Dido and Aenaes (2019). She currently performing with Opera Anywhere in their production of The Pirates of Penzance and has previously performed with Oxford Opera (Carmen 2019, La Boheme 2020), Oxfordshire Contemporary Opera (@Emele 2021), and Opera Anywhere (Suor Angelica 2017-2019, The Pirates of Penzance 2019-2022). Ellen has sung with many choirs and groups, including the Rodolfus Choral Course 2019 and the Edinbellas. Ellen has also been involved behind the scenes, as a stage manager at Garsington Opera for the Adult Community Company production Weather the Storm 2021, and head of wardrobe and props for Opera Anywhere’s new production of Iolanthe 2022. Dream role: Rusalka! The aria to the moon is stunning, and part of me really wants to be a water nymph with a Little Mermaid story.

Sponsorship Manager: Fiona Macrae

Fiona is 3rd Year Classics student, and has been with ESO since 2020. Her first opera experience was in Garsington Opera's Youth Opera Company (2015-2021), and she was a participant on the Rudolfus Foundation Oxford choral course in 2019. She had her first lead role as the Sorceress in her school's production of Dido and Aeneas, but has previously sung in productions with Opera Anywhere (Pucini's Heroines, Amahl and the Night Visitors), Oxford Opera Company (La Bôhéme, Carmen) and Oxford Contemporary Opera (@Emile). Last year she sang the role of Dew Fairy in ESO's production of Hansel and Gretel. She looks forward to being involved again this year. Dream role: Don Giovanni, for all the awesome arias (perhaps a gender-bent version is needed? 👀), but a close tie with the Queen of the Night (for the DrAmA 🤩)!

Events Organiser: Hester Zijlstra

This is Hester (she/they), our new events manager. She is a third year classics student, and this is her second year in ESO, having been in the chorus of last year's production of Hansel and Gretel. Her first introduction to opera was through an original opera, Styx, which was written for and performed by Holland Opera, and portrayed a sequel to the Antigone, where Antigone ends up at the river Styx without an obol and has to find a way to convince Charon to let her cross. She has sung in multiple school and church choirs in the Netherlands, and is currently singing in the Edinburgh University Singers, directed by Calum Robertson. ESO has been her first real venture into opera. Dream role: Her dream role is anything in which she would get to scream on stage in grief, fear or anger, and she is not entirely sure why.

Ordinary Member: Katarina Keck

Katarina is an ordinary member of the society this year, so she helps out where she can and supports the other members in organizing the fantastic events they have planned for this year. She is a fourth-year History and Politics student at the university and has no singing experience beyond what her shower head hears 🙂. She got involved with the society last year as part of the production team and worked on Hansel & Gretel as Assistant Director. That means she was able to enjoy everything the society has to offer both in terms of talent and fun, “even with my rather lackluster operatic singing skills”. She has previously worked in other production roles, including costume assistant for EUSOG’s Ruddigore, directed and produced Matilda at Harrogate Ladies College, and was Dramatic Advisor on Die Fledermaus at the Vienna Volksoper this summer. Dream role: Rather than singing it would actually be to direct either Mozart's "Die Zauberflöte" or Strauss' "Die Fledermaus" which are both, being from Vienna, very near and dear to my heart.

ESO Committee 2021-2022

President: Lucy Bridgeman

Secretary: Grace Moran

Treasurer: Claire Gilchrist

Publicity Manager: Giselle Nascimento Dias

Sponsorship Manager: Holly Gowen

Community Outreach Manager: Eleanor Glynn

Social Secretary: Elizabeth Gibb

Events Manager: Fiona Macrae

ESO Committee 2020-2021

President: Holly Gowen

Secretary: Claire Gilchrist

Treasurer: Elizabeth Gibb

Publicity Manager: Eleanor Glynn

Community Outreach Manager: Georgina McNamara

ESO Committee 2019-2020

President: Àine Cassidy

Secretary: Olivia Stevens 

Treasurer: Grace Moran

Publicity Manager: Lucy Bridgeman

Sponsorship Manager: Grace Moran 

Community Outreach & Alumni Manager: Eleanor Glynn

Social Secretary: Hannah Leggatt

Events Manager: Eleanor Craig-Fisher

Ordinary Members: Holly Gowen (cast representative), Marysia Fijol, Elizabeth Gibb.

ESO Committee 2018-2019

President: Hannah Leggatt

Secretary: Izi Thomas

Treasurer: Patrick Dodd

Publicity Manager: Serena Linley-Adams

Sponsorship Manager: Olivia Stevens

Community Outreach & Alumni Manager: Rhys Inward

Social Secretary: Eleanor Roy

Ordinary Members: Mhairi Brannigan (cast representative), Belle Rockett, Grace Moran.

ESO Committee 2017-2018

President: Flynn Le Brocq

Secretary: Serena Linley-Adams

Treasurer: James Field

Publicity Manager: Moorea Corrigan

Sponsorship Manager: Frederick Hervey-Bathurst

Community Outreach & Alumni Manager: Samantha Redfern

Social Secretary: Alexandra Maliphant

Ordinary Members: Sally Pitts (cast representative), Lewis Gilchrist, Patrick Dodd.

ESO Committee 2016-2017

President: Flynn Le Brocq

Secretary: Samantha Redfern

Treasurer: James Field

Publicity Manager: Lorna Stubbs Davies

Sponsorship Manager: Sasha Holland

Community Outreach Manager: Vasia Passaris

Social Secretary: Alexandra Maliphant

Ordinary Members: Carey Andrews (cast representative), Patrick Dodd, Serena Linley-Adams.