Described by the BBC as “England’s Mario Lanza”, by The Times as “simply brilliant” and Opera Magazine as “the Danilo of one’s dreams…”, Alexander Grove is an award-winning English tenor performing internationally, known for his wide range of repertoire, intelligent and exciting interpretations, engaging stagecraft and acting ability and warm toned, yet flexible vocal ability. He is considered to be one of the most versatile tenors to emerge from the UK in recent years. A former chorister of St Paul’s Cathedral, London and trained for 7 years at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, Alexander’s career currently spans the opera, oratorio, concert and musical theatre stages, television, radio and recordings: from Abbey Road Studios, London to performing to capacity crowds of over 30,000 per night in some of Europe’s largest arenas such the O2, to leading roles in A stage opera houses and the West End. Alexander is also a resident member of the Gothenburg Opera, Sweden: one of Northern Europe’s leading opera houses.
Alexander has performed over 60 operatic / operetta roles, and is also in demand on the concert platform having performed the majority of the oratorio repertoire and given recitals and galas in festivals and tours covering the length and breadth of the UK for the majority of his life. Internationally his career has taken him all over the world from the USA and Europe to Japan and as far as Teatro Amazonas in Brazil.
Amongst others, he has been a soloist under the batons of Sir Georg Solti, Kent Negano, Simon Halsey, Sir Edward Downes, Sir David Wilcocks, Pier Giorgio Morandi, Edward Gardner, Noel Davies, Tobias Ringborg and Daniel Harding and studied under many world class artists including Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and Nicolai Gedda.
As a producer Alexander is creator of the international 3 Tenors Ensemble - TENORI, performing 3 tenors concerts for corporate and private clients; and co-producer of Fource: a four female opera rock group. He is also a published opera critic reviewing for various online classical music and operatic publications.
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Opera / Concert
Alexander has a broad repertoire and experience from buffo roles to leading men. Over the course of his career he has received consistent critical acclaim from the broadsheets and magazines: Opera Magazine hailed his professional debut in 2003 as Peter Quint in Britten’s Turn of the Screw as a “triumph”. Recent career highlights include the Son/Tenor 1 in Weill’s Seven Deadly Sins (De Sjudödssynderna) under David Radok at Göteborgs Operan, his Swiss debut in Die Zauberflöte under Daniel Harding at the Lucerne Festival, Switzerland; his Finnish debut as Don Ramiro under the baton of Pier Giorgio Morandi with the Finnish National Opera in a revival of the 1988 Michael Hampe production of La Cenerentola; his Swedish debut receiving acclaim for his interpretation of Magnus Gabriele de la Gardie in Foroni’s revived bel canto opera Cristina Regina di Svezia at the Vadstena Opera Festival under Tobias Ringborg; Don Ramiro, La Cenerentola for Malmö Opera under Brad Cohen; Don José (cover) and Remendado Carmen under Marcello Mottadelli at Opera På Skäret. His Count Danilo in Lehar’s The Merry Widow for Scottish Opera was described as “the Danilo of one’s dreams” (Opera Magazine). Other highlights include the roles of Le Nos, Pytor and Yarishkin in Le Nos (Shostakovich) at Royal Opera House 2; Trio, Trouble In Tahiti (Bernstein) and Charlie, Mahagonny Songspiel (Weill) all under the directorship of the Royal Opera’s associate director, John Fulljames for The Opera Group; Pierrot, Der Kaiser von Atlantis (Ullmann) under Edward Gardner and the Hallé Orchestra which he reprised for Upfront Opera; and Lupo with the composer Hans Werner Henze as conductor on his children’s opera Pollicino. Other roles include Bajazet, Tamerlano; Hippolyte Hippolyte et Aricie (Lully) and Telemachus Il Ritorno d’UIisse in Patria (Monteverdi) for Yorke Trust Opera; Pedrillo Il Seraglio for Scottish Opera; Count von Zedlau Wiener Blut and Eisenstein, Die Fledermaus for Clonter Opera; Chinese Man The Fairy Queen (Purcell) for Armonico Touring Opera; Dottore The Jewel Box (Mozart) for Bampton Classical Opera; Fenton Die Lustigen Weiber von Windsor (Nicolai) for Cumbria Opera; Mercury Orpheus in the Underworld (Offenbach) for BYO; Ben The Telephone (Menotti) for Ludlow Opera; Borsa Rigoletto (Verdi) for Mid Wales Opera; Remendado Carmen (Bizet) for Stowe Opera, Ralph Rackstraw HMS Pinafore (Sullivan) for Phoenix Opera; Colonel Fairfax Yeomen of the Guard (Sullivan) for West Cumberland Opera; Rapunzel’s Prince Into The Woods (Sondheim), Dr Caius Falstaff (Verdi), Chekalinsky Pique Dame (Tchaikovsky), Monsieur Taupe Capriccio (Strauss), Oronte Alcina (Handel), Egisto L’Egisto and La Théière L’Enfant et les Sortilèges, Ravel, all for the RNCM.
Due to his background, one of Alexander’s specialisations is modern repertoire and repertoire in the English language. Alexander has created 10 roles in world premiere British operas with renowned British composers, librettists, poets and novelists. For Scottish Opera: the title role in Gesualdo (Ian Rankin + Craig Armstrong); the title role in Dream Angus (Stephen Deazley + Alexander McCall Smith); the role of Steve in Money Man (Lyell Creswell + Ron Butlin); the Ghost 74 Degrees North (Paul Mealor + Peter Stollery); Vitya, The Letter (Bernard Maclaverty + V Khodosh). For The Opera Group the roles of: Suit, Walking Not Driving (Tim Coker); Dean, Anything Money Can Buy (Laura Bowler); Wilson Out of the Ordinary (David Bruce); For Yorke Trust Opera: Lord Nelson, The Sailor’s Tale (Rupert Bawden) which was also recorded on the NMC Record Label (available here). For Unicorn Theatre: Karl / Prince Florian Clockwork (Stephen McNeff + Philip Pullman.
In competition, Alexander is a multi-award winner: most recently as male winner of the BBC Kiri Prize recorded by the BBC with the BBC Concert Orchestra on BBC Radio 2 and televised for BBC’s Last Night of the Proms. Other competition wins include the Anne Ziegler Competition and 2nd prize in the Frederic Cox Award.
On the oratorio and concert platforms Alexander’s performed repertoire covers the majority of the major works and his performances have been heard in many of the major venues and cathedrals in the UK. Highlights include the tenor cantata Rinaldo (Brahms) with the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra and the Orphei Dränger male chorus in Sweden under Cecilia Rydinger Alin; concerts with soprano Louise Sjöstedt at the Royal Albert Hall, London, in Salzburg and at Berwaldhallen, Stockholm; with the BBC Concert Orchestra at the Hackney Empire, London in A Tribute to Mario Lanza recorded live for BBC Radio 2 under Gavin Sutherland; Beethoven 9th Symphony and Messiah under Simon Halsey and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra at Birmingham Symphony Hall; L’Enfant du Christ under Kent Negano at the Bridgewater Hall; Viennese Operetta Gala at The Sage, Gateshead under Wyn Davies and the Northern Sinfonia; Rossini Petite Messe Solenelle under David Lloyd-Jones; A look back to the Good ‘ol Days with the BBC Concert Orchestra under Roderick Dunk + Martyn Yates; Der Kaiser von Atlantis (Ullman) at the Imperial War Museum North under Edward Gardner and the Hallé Orchestra; The Jewel Box (Mozart) at St John Smith’s Square, London. World premieres include A Song for St Stephen (John Joubert) with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra under Simon Halsey.
Recording credits include the world premiere of Bawden’s The Sailor’s Tale on the NMC label in which he created the role of Lord Nelson; a world premiere for Independent Ballet Wales of Turner’s Bride of Flowers; the soundtrack of James Horner, Stephen Spielberg and George Lucas’s animated movie The Land Before Time and various prominent cinema and television soundtracks. Alexander has been heard live on BBC Radio 2, BBC Radio 3, the BBC World Service, SVT, Sveriges Radio amongst others. Alexander is also featured on multiple Hyperion recordings as a Treble.
Alexander has worked frequently In the commercial side of the music business. In 2006 for 2 consecutive years, Alexander toured the UK and Ireland’s largest venues with a range of popular artists such as Beverley Knight, Lee Ryan (Blue), Alexandra Burke, Sabrina Washington (Mystique) and one of the world’s premiere beatboxer and urban artists, Beardyman at the MEN Arena, Birmingham NIA, O2 Millennium Dome, Royal Albert Hall, The Point Dublin and The Odyssey Arena, Belfast with the worlds largest concerts for young people - Young Voices Concerts. The largest live audiences exceeded 250,000 a week and 35,000 a night.
In the football world, Alexander has performed for Manchester United and Bury Football Clubs including a private fundraiser for Gary and Phil Neville. In 2009 Alexander was invited to sing at the UEFA Champions League Final in Rome.
Alexander has appeared in various UK television series including Clocking Off, Brookside, Coronation Street, Hollyoaks, At Home With The Braithwaites, Emmerdale and North Square for Granada Television and Yorkshire Television.
Alexander has also appeared in the BBC Proms and on the operatic spoof “Anarchy in the UK” for Kombat Opera.
In 2010 he was invited by Channel 4 Television to appear alongside Peter Stringfellow and Lee Ryan in Channel 4 television’s “Celebrity Come Dine with Me”.
Through his performing, Alexander has helped support various charities over the last decade including Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital, CLIC Sargent Cancer Care, Cancer Research UK, The Kidney Research Fund and the British Heart Foundation.
Alexander was born in London. At 6 years old, he won a place as a chorister at St Paul's Cathedral, London under respected organists John Scott and Christopher Dearnley. For the next 5 years, (as well as learning the oboe, piano and theatre skills) he was trained intensively as a Treble. He rehearsed and performed in public with the choir and as a soloist every day in the cathedral, and frequently as a paid soloist in grand venues and on foreign tours, and by the age of 10 was a consummate professional.
On recording he featured on the Hyperion label and made numerous appearances on television, at special events, private concerts, film soundtracks and royal engagements.
Solo performance highlights of his chorister career include:
- At Mansion House, Londonfor the Lord Mayor of London;
- With Big Bird and the Muppets for creator Jim Henson’s memorial service.
- With José Carreras under Sir Georg Solti at the Royal Festival Hall, London;
- For President George H W Bush at the White House, Washington;
- For Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother’s 90th Birthday at Horse Guards Parade, London,
- With Harry Secombe on “Highway” (ITV).
During his career as a chorister, Alexander performed in the majority of the major venues and Cathedrals in London such as the Barbican, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Royal Festival Hall and Royal Albert Hall.
When his voice broke at 13 years old, Alexander continued to develop his acting and musical skills while at Bishop’s Stortford College and began performing in musicals, while continuing his study as a baritone, working through his ABRSM singing and oboe exams and playing in the orchestra. His vocal tutors included: Susan Waters, Ben Parry (Swingle Singers) and David Porter-Thomas (Kings Singers).
Alexander was accepted as a choral scholar to Kings College, Cambridge, but wanting a more performance based course won a place on the undergraduate course at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester studying with renowned English tenor, Anthony Roden and later with bass, Colin Iveson.
Alexander studied further at the Ferrandou Summer School in France with baritone David Wilson Johnson and Peter Harrison; at the Georg Solti Accademia di Bel Canto in Italy with Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Frederica von Stade and Corradina Caporello and studied privately in Switzerland with Nicolai Gedda; in Italy with Susanna Rigacci and in Sweden tenor Sten Sjöstedt. He has also undertaken many masterclasses from eminent artists including Anne Howells, Geoffrey Shovelton, Nigel Douglas, Martin Isepp, Rafael Rojas, Joseph Ward, Sir Thomas Allen, David Lloyd-Jones, Bruno Rigacci, Robin Stapleton, Francesca Patané, Anna Sweeney, Anthony Legge, Paul Whelan and received coaching from artists such as Jean Mallandaine, Jim Holmes, Paul Griffiths, Chris Squires, Adele Leigh and John Cameron.