Photo: Robert Piwko
Clare Norburn is a singer, playwright, producer, freelance arts fundraiser & artist mentor. She read music at Leeds University and singing at London College of Music.
As a playwright, she has developed a new genre of concert/plays including, Beethoven’s Quartet Journey (six concert/plays to accompany a full cycle of his string quartets) for The Dante Quartet (2016), Purcell, the Musical (2018) for Ceruleo; and with director Nicholas Renton: Breaking the Rules (2015) for The Marian Consort, Creating Carmen (2019) for CarmenCo and Galileo (2020) for Monteverdi String Band/Marian Consort.
With her medieval group The Telling, her Empowered Women Trilogy has had 22 performances, including two of the concertplays being filmed during lockdown and being selected by The Guardian as an online classical highlight alongside the Salzburg and Edinburgh Festivals. Her most recent project, Love in the Lockdown (2021), is an online play with music in 9 episodes, starring Alec Newman and Rachael Stirling. Her productions have toured UK festivals and LSO St Luke’s, Bridgewater Hall and St John’s Smith Square.
As a singer she has sung as a soloist with many medieval ensembles including her own group The Telling, Mediva (finalists in the York International Young Artists Competition and selected for Southbank Centre’s Fresh Young Artists Series), Eclipse and Vox Animae with whom she has recorded and performed medieval abbess, Hildegard of Bingen’s music drama Ordo Virtutum. She has performed throughout the country with these ensembles including at The Purcell Room, The Bridgewater Hall and at leading festivals including Spitalfields Music, Brighton Festival, Newbury Spring Festival and Buxton Festival.
Together with Deborah Roberts, Clare co-founded Brighton Early Music Festival. She stepped down in 2017 after 15 years to concentrate on writing and singing. She is Artistic-Director of Stroud Green Festival, North London’s quirkiest acoustic music festival. She has trained and mentored young ensembles for RADA, Handel House, Royal Academy of Music and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama. She ran the training element of the Early Music Live! scheme for 10 years at Brighton Early Music Festival, and has supported a number of young ensembles at Stroud Green Festival, helping them develop new projects, secure bookings with promoters and funding. She also works as a freelance arts fundraiser.