Dermod Gloster and Liesl Hartje are performing in “Operetta Soiree” at the Masque Theatre in June. 

Born in Ireland, Dermod Gloster was  awarded an Italian Government  scholarship , enabling him to study in Rome under opera singer Mario Borriello. Thereafter he continued his studies in London under Gustav Sacher and Joseph Hislop, before making his debut in a Rossini opera at Hampstead .

He soon graduated to heavier roles, and appeared  throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland, and also in Holland. Operas included  La Traviata, Il Trovatore,(Di Luna), Tosca, Madam Butterfly,  La Rondine,  Cavalleria  Rusticana, I Pagliacci, Il Pirata, Don Quichotte (Massenet), L’infedelta delusa (Haydn)  and several lesser known works. He sang the title role in Smetana’s opera “Dalibor”, and made several appearances  in the “Opera Nights” series at London’s Mermaid Theatre.

He sang regularly in oratorio, notably in the Verdi, Mozart and Dvorak Requiems, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solenelle, The Messiah, Schubert’s Mass in G, The Creation  and Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius.  Concert  work included a short Irish tour with Charles Lynch, that country’s leading concert pianist.

On the lighter side he sang leading roles in productions of The White Horse Inn, The Merry Widow, The Student Prince (in Zimbabwe with Ge Korsten), Schubert in Lilac Time (in Cork, Ireland) and An Evening with Ivor Novello. He completed 433 performances (over a year) of the leading tenor role in The Desert Song with British star John Hanson at the Palace Theatre on London’s West End.

 

Liesl Hartje was born in Cape Town, and in her final school year performed with the Bergvliet High Singers at the Grahamstown Festival and the Roodepoort International Music Festival prior to going on an East European tour. She sang, including as soloist, in Prague, Budapest, Bratislava , Bucharest and other lesser known Rumanian towns, and in Nuremburg.

She completed her performance Diploma at UCT under renowned mezzo-soprano Sarita Stern, and  Angelo Gobbato,  and  sang in several student operas there, including The Marriage of Figaro and Don Giovanni. She performed with the ‘sensational’ Three Sopranos (the others being Beverley Chiat and Violina Anguelov) for several  years at concerts around Cape Town, the Winelands, Hermanus and rther afield.

In 2011 she was chosen to sing the lead in Playbill’s ill-fated production of “The Merry Widow”, which had to be cancelled due to the illness of the director, but later sang in an opera and operetta concert with Dermod Gloster and Matthew Overmeyer, and in a highly successful  Gala Concert in aid of Fish Hoek Neighbourhood Watch. The following year she played Elsie in the G & S production “Yeomen of the Guard” at Artscape, and afterwards at Buxton in the UK.