Watkins "effortless mastery ... totally spellbinding"
David and Michael often collaborate with Jane in varied concert programmes. David as accompanist in song and lieder recitals, and with Michael in programmes of Opera Arias. Their Purcell and Mozart opera evenings have been enthusiastically received. Jane has sung with the English National Opera, Opera North, the Scottish Opera and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. She also sang the part of the Countess in Mozart’s “Marriage of Figaro” in a recent television production.
Jane Leslie MacKenzie was born in British Columbia, Canada and following a degree in music from the University of Victoria where she studied with the Canadian recitalist Frances James Adaskin, came to London to continue her vocal studies. As part of her studies, she attended the Britten Pears School in Aldeburgh, attending masterclasses given by Sir Peter Pears, Nancy Evans, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and Galina Vishnevskaya and consequently performed at the Aldeburgh Festival performing with the Britten Pears Orchestra. She made her operatic debut with Kent Opera as Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni) and since then has performed with most of the major British opera companies. With English National Opera she has sung the Countess (Le Nozze di Figaro) and Marzelline (Fidelio); with Opera North, Pamina (Die Zauberflö te), Anne Truelove (The Rake's Progress), Marzelline, Euridice (Orfeo ed Euridice), Fiordiligi (Così fan Tutte) , Mimì (La Bohè me) and Donna Elvira; with Scottish Opera, Micaë la (Carmen), Pamina and the Countess, with Welsh National Opera, Mimi and with the City of Birmingham Touring Opera (now the Birmingham Opera Company) the title role in Zaï de, Margué rite (Faust) and the acclaimed production of Fidelio which was televised live for BBC4 and won Graham Vick the Southbank Show Award in 2003.
In 1994, she made her Covent Garden debut as the Countess in Massenet's Cherubin , a role she later performed with the Opera de Monte Carlo. Other performances abroad both in opera, concert and recital include Pamina in Edmonton, Winnipeg and Vancouver, Micaë la in Edmonton, the Governess (the Turn of the Screw), Dafne (Apollo e Dafne) in Batignano, First Lady (Die Zauberflö te) in Geneva, Margué rite and Alice Ford (Falstaff) for the New Israeli Opera in Tel Aviv. She and David have done several recitals together including a private recital in the presence of HRH The Prince of Wales at Gwydir Castle in Wales in 1998.
Miss MacKenzie now lives in Kent with her husband, two children and an odd assortment of livestock and bees!
“A beautifully drawn Elvira exquisitely sung by Jane Leslie MacKenzie”Sunday Times