There are few gifts more powerful than an inspiring mentor and in dramatic soprano Vera Wenkert, local singer Charlotte Whittle has found just that.
Now, after training, firstly with Lundin Links stalwart George Gordon and now monthly in Switzerland with Vera, Charlotte returns to town to share the stage with her coach, adviser and guide.
For one night only on October 8, the two operatic voices will combine to give audiences a truly emotional performance. For both Vera and Charlotte are fiercely passionate about portraying a story, about opera and about putting on a good show.
Vera said: “I love to guide young singers in finding their unique voice. My way of life and my singing career has made me an empathetic teacher and I believe in Charlotte’s beautiful big voice.”
With hopes of becoming a teacher Charlotte had not thought it was possible to make a career from music but has since had a glimpse of achieving her dream.
“My first ever singing teacher, George, introduced me to the world of classical music. It was completely new for me and I didn’t know you could make a career from it. And now I have the desire to make it!
“People often assume because opera was traditionally an art of the well-off that it still is, or that those of us involved in the art are well-off. Getting into an opera studio is the stepping stone to becoming a professional but it isn’t cheap.” Guiding Charlotte towards a career in singing, Vera believes strongly in her talent and hopes these concerts will help Charlotte gain as much exposure as possible. But her dream to be accepted into an international opera studio also comes down to pennies.
Charlotte teaches at Buckhaven Community Centre’s class ‘Strike a Chord’ to help supplement her training but also because she loves it. “It is the highlight of my week, it’s so much fun. This gives me a chance to combine both my passions.”
Charlotte and Vera will also make an appearance together at Cellardyke Parish Church on September 3 when they will be joined by 10 other young international singers. Audiences will have the opportunity to drop into a masterclass on September 1 to see Vera’s teaching in action.
“Opera is very foreign in our daily life but this concert is a wonderful opportunity to get a cosy look into the magical land of opera. Visitors will love it as every part will be explained and that helps to give a better understanding,” said Vera. For tickets, call 07854 147946.