Sarah Leonard is one of Britain’s most respected and versatile sopranos. She has a wide repertoire from baroque to contemporary music and has appeared throughout the world in major concert halls, opera houses and festivals. She has premiered many works by leading composers including Harrison Birtwistle, Pascal Dusapin, Jonathan Harvey and Helmut Lachenmann.
Her 30-plus recordings include a recital series of English Song with Malcolm Martineau, works by Varèse with Chailly and the Concertgebouw Orchestra and Ligeti’s Aventures, Nouvelle Aventures with the Schoenberg Ensemble.
For many years Sarah toured extensively as a guest soprano with The Hilliard Ensemble, singing and recording the music of Arvo Pärt. She sang with The Michael Nyman Band for over 20 years and featured on Peter Greenaway films The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover, and Prospero’s Books and many Nyman CD’s. Sarah has also worked with John Harle and is the voice in the title music of the long running TV series Silent Witness. In March 2014 she toured the UK with John and singer Marc Almond.
Sarah has given many oratorio performances and song recitals throughout the UK. These include recitals with her regular pianist Stephen Gutman, in the BMIC’s Cutting Edge series, Poole Lighthouse Centre for the Arts, and Benslow Music’s Summer Festival. In October 2012 they gave an American Song recital at The Clothworkers Centenary Hall, Leeds and in 2013 Sarah sang an English Song Recital with Stephen Varcoe accompanied by Nigel Foster in The London Song Festival.
Sarah is Chairman of the Association of English Singers and Speakers, a member of the British Voice Association and the Association of Teachers of Singing, and joint President with Stephen Varcoe of the English Poetry and Song Society. Alongside her performing career Sarah also teaches singing at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and Cambridge University. She holds very popular singing courses at Benslow Music and Jackdaws and gives regular workshops and master classes.
In January 2013 Hull University awarded Sarah Leonard a Degree of Doctor of Music, honoris causa for her services to music.