After years of training and performing in opera productions at many of the world's greatest venues, five classically-trained singers have taken a radical step and formed the first ever opera band- Amici Forever. With stunning looks and amazing voices. Amici Forever have been widely touted to be the biggest phenomenon since the Three Tenors brought opera to the world stage. The three male and two female voices perform some of the great opera classics as well as more contemporary creations.
Amici forever has performed live to a television audience of more than 500 million worldwide at the Champions League Final, the climax of the European soccer season, and have appeared on stage with some of the U.K.'s top pop acts, including Atomic Kitten, Big Bruvvas, and Will Young. They also performed with Dame Shirley Bassey on her national U.K. Tour, and last November they were invited by the Queen to perform at London's Royal Albert Hall for The Festival of Remembrance which was televised live to over 6 million viewers.
Amici forever comprises Jo Appleby – Soprano, from England; Tsakane Valentine - Soprano, from South Africa; Geoff Sewell – Tenor, from New Zealand; David Habbin – Tenor, from England; and Nick Garrett – Bass- Baritone, from England.
Nick Garrett (Bass Baritone)
Nick was born in London, England. Having developed an interest in conducting and composition, Nick earned a degree from Trinity College of Music and went on to win the Wolfson Foundation Award for voice. Nick took time out immediately after his degree and joined the world-famous Swingle Singers, touring with them worldwide.
As a soloist, Nick has sung over 30 roles at some of the greatest opera houses in the world including the Royal Opera House, English National Opera, Scottish Opera, Opera North and Opera National de Paris. As well as performing important opera roles, Nick has also sung all the major oratorio roles throughout Europe. As a composer, he contributes to the writing and arrangements of some of the pieces performed by the band.
BIRTHDAY: 13 April
STAR SIGN: Aries
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Black
FAVOURITE MOVIE: ‘English Patient'
FAVOURITE ARTIST: Thom York
FAVOURITE FOOD: Seafood
FAVOURITE DRINK: Dom Perignon
FAVOURITE CAR: Lotus Esprit Classic 77 version
FAVOURITE DESIGNER: William Hunt
Jo Appleby (Soprano) Born in Blackpool, England. As every little girl does she studied ballet, tap, modern and jazz and it was later that singing became her passion. She completed her vocal training at the Royal Northern College of Music where she graduated with honours.
Sponsored by the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, she made her debut at the Royal Festival Hall in London. Since then, she has performed some of the leading operatic roles including Despina in Cosi Fan Tutti, Servilia in La Clemenza di Tito, Jano Jenufa and First Soprano in James Macmillan's Busqueda. Jo has also performed with the Carl Rosa Opera and Glyndebourne Festival Opera.
BIRTHDAY: 7 April
STAR SIGN: Aries
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Baby blue and turquoise
FAVOURITE MOVIE: ‘Dirty Dancing' and ‘Dangerous Liaisons'
FAVOURITE ARTIST: Renee Fleming
FAVOURITE FOOD: Chocolate
FAVOURITE DRINK: Bollinger
FAVOURITE CAR: Jaguar (must be new, sporty and a soft top!)
FAVOURITE DESIGNER: Ann Wiberg
David Habbin (Tenor) David was born near Bournemouth, England. Throughout his teens, David performed in rock bands but it was only when he started taking singing classes from a retired international opera singer that his interest for opera emerged. He studied music and acting at Mountview Drama School in London which led him to launch a successful career performing in London's West End shows including Les Miserables and earned him the lead in the revival of the original London production of West Side Story.
David then turned to operatic performances and graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music. He joined the prestigious Glyndebourne Festival Opera Company. He has since performed a number of high-profile roles including Alfredo in la Traviata, Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Alfred in Die Fledermaus and Ernesto in Don Pasquale, with various UK opera companies.
BIRTHDAY: 14 October
STAR SIGN: Libra
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Blue
FAVOURITE MOVIE: ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid'
FAVOURITE ARTIST: David Bowie
FAVOURITE FOOD: Shellfish
FAVOURITE DRINK: Jack Daniels
FAVOURITE CAR: Aston Martin Vanquish
FAVOURITE DESIGNER: All Saints
Tsakane Valentine (Soprano)
Born in Johannesburg, South Africa and grew up in Giyani. Tsakane has been singing African music in choirs since childhood. She studied music at The University of Pretoria and furthered her operatic training at Technikon Pretoria.
As a soloist, Tsakane has performed at a number of high-profile events and performed for world leaders, including Mandela and Mbeki and German Chancellor Schroder. Tsakane has played Musetta from La Boheme, the title role in Grafin Mariza, Contessa Ceprano in Rigoletto, and Maria in West Side Story at the prestigious Spier Opera Festival in Cape Town, before moving to London and joining Amici forever.
BIRTHDAY: 14 February
STAR SIGN: Aquarius
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Blue
FAVOURITE MOVIE: ‘Desperado'
FAVOURITE ARTIST: Bob Marley
FAVOURITE FOOD: Biltong
FAVOURITE DRINK: Baileys
FAVOURITE CAR: BMW Z4 in black
FAVOURITE DESIGNER: Trash Couture
Geoff Sewell (Tenor)
Geoff grew up in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand and sang as a boy soprano in school choirs until the age of 18. He trained as a chartered accountant at Victoria University of Wellington and worked for four years with a merchant bank. Following the tragic death of his older sister and a subsequent family trip to Memphis in the United States, Geoff decided to follow his dream and moved to the US to study music at the prestigious Boston Conservatory.
After completing his vocal training Geoff established a successful entertainment company in London, during which time he performed as an operatic tenor in front of royalty and celebrities including Prince William and Sir Elton John. Other performances include concerts at the Royal Albert Hall accompanied by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and a special unique performance of the New Zealand National Anthem in July 2002 during the Commonwealth Games.
BIRTHDAY: 13 March
STAR SIGN: Pisces
FAVOURITE COLOUR: Green
FAVOURITE MOVIE: ‘Dead Poet's Society'
FAVOURITE ARTIST: Elvis Presley
FAVOURITE FOOD: New Zealand mussels
FAVOURITE DRINK: New Zealand wine – all of it!
FAVOURITE CAR: Porsche 911
FAVOURITE DESIGNER: Gianni Versace
Amici Forever debut album The Opera Band has gone platinum, and it has been awarded Gold Disk. It is also No. 1 on the Classical Charts for the 4th week running. Amici forever are honoured to have been nominated for the ALBUM OF THE YEAR AWARD 2004 at The Classical Brits which will take place at The Royal Albert Hall and are delighted they will be performing at this prestigious event.
With a visual appeal to match their musical ability, Amici Forever have already captured the imaginations of millions, and are set to become household names with the release of their debut album- The Opera Band. The five classically trained singers have created a unique sound as never before have five mixed voices been brought together to produce such electrifying harmonies.
Amici Forever concert will take place on the 15 th of August 2004 in Latvian National Opera.