Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.

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Artist Hyperion Records
Purves, Christopher (baritone)
© Chris Gloag

Christopher Purves (baritone)

Born in Cambridge, Christopher Purves was a choral scholar at King’s College, Cambridge, where he studied English. On leaving university he joined the highly innovative rock and roll group Harvey and the Wallbangers, before he was offered the opportunity to sing Don Pasquale with Opera 80. He subsequently appeared in Mozart’s C minor Mass in Aix-en-Provence with Harry Christophers and The Sixteen, followed by his debut at English National Opera as Masetto in Don Giovanni.

Purves has a great affinity for contemporary repertoire and has created roles in a number of notable works, most recently singing Walt Disney in the premiere of Philip Glass’ The Perfect American at the Teatro Real in Madrid and ENO. He also sang in the first performance of George Benjamin’s Written on Skin to widespread critical acclaim, and for composer Sir James MacMillan Purves has created roles in The Sacrifice at Welsh National Opera, Inés de Castro at Scottish Opera and Parthenogenesis at the Edinburgh International Festival.

On the concert platform, highlights include Mozart’s Requiem with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Bach’s St John Passion at the Concertgebouw and St Matthew Passion with the Academy of Ancient Music, and Elgar’s The Kingdom at the first night of the BBC Proms with Sir Andrew Davis and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. A keen recitalist, Purves works regularly with pianist Simon Lepper, and has appeared at the Aldeburgh Festival, Opera North and Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge.

Recent operatic highlights include the title role in Richard Jones’ new production of Don Giovanni for English National Opera, The Protector in Written on Skin for the Royal Opera House, the title role in Barrie Kosky’s production of Saul at the Adelaide Festival, Alberich in Götterdämmerung at the Bayerische Staatsoper, and Balstrode in Peter Grimes at the Teatro alla Scala.

His extensive discography includes numerous operas, and solo appearances alongside The Sixteen and the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge. His first solo recording, Handel’s Finest Arias for Base Voice with Arcangelo and Jonathan Cohen, drew widespread praise as ‘a splendid and fearful spectacle’ (The Times) and ‘the most outstanding album of its kind I’ve ever heard from any singer’ (Early Music Today).


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