The Makeshift

Kent Opera is determined to make more work in Kent – and with Kent artists. We are thus delighted to collaborate with the soprano Li Li on a project she has been nursing for a number of years. A piece for three opera singers and a pianist which tackles the whole thorny subject of employability of artists on the British opera scene. Li Li, trained at the Birmingham Conservatoire, began the project with Kent Opera director Stephen Tiller before he took over the company in June 2017, but as she is Medway-based, this seems like the perfect moment to take it further. We envisage it as a 90 minute piece, telling the backstage story of what happens when a singer drops out of a concert and an ‘unknown’ takes over, but told in an entertaining and hopefully optimistic way.  And with lots of great classic arias and duets. Stephen and Li Li worked together with his other company, OperaMachine on the London production of Finding Butterfly which subsequently toured to Japan. She sang Cio Cio San on both occasions. 

Li Li was born in China and became a UK resident in 2008. She obtained both a Postgraduate Diploma and a Master of Music Degree with distinction at the Birmingham Conservatoire. She won the Cecil Drew Oratorio Prize, the Ellen May Cheshire Scholarship, the Mario Lanza Opera Prize (first runner-up), the Ashleyan Opera Prize, and Beijing Young Artist Vocal Competition. In the last few years, she has toured in over 100 opera gala tour productions in the UK & Ireland, including Buxton Opera House, The Fairfield Halls and Jersey Opera House. Her performances featured roles/arias from Rosina (Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Liu (Turandot), Almirena (Rinaldo), Papagena (Die Zauberflote), Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro)