Press Release: Auckland bass-baritone qualifies for final round of the 2014 Sydney Eisteddfod McDonald’s Operatic Aria

2 September 2014 

New Zealand bass-baritone James Ioelu recently graduated from the Manhattan School of Music after completing a Master’s in Performance Voice under the tutelage of Maitland Peters. Now anxious to obtain a place in a young artist program with an established company, James hopes to return to the United States before the year ends to take further vocal, craft and language studies in preparation for the forthcoming American and European audition seasons.

James’ recent performances include the role of Mephistopheles in Gounod’s Faust, Trinity Moses in Kurt Wiel’s The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny and Bruno in Michael Williams’ The Juniper Passion that premiered in Rome. Later this year, he will perform Raimondo in Lucia Di Lammermoor, and in the meantime, he is understudying the bass solo in Haydn’s Creation with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

Always in with an excellent chance, James has sung in the final round the Sydney Eisteddfod McDonald’s Operatic Aria three times since 2010. Last year, he finished runner-up to soprano Amina Edris, and this year he is hoping to improve on that result. Due to singing engagements in New Zealand, James had to fly across the Tasman three times in four days to compete in the heats, quarter and semis finals of this competition, James flew across the Tasman four times in three days. It was a marathon effort, and as he handled every test magnificently, many believe he deserves to win.

The final of the 2014 Sydney Eisteddfod McDonald’s Operatic Aria will take place at the Concourse Concert Hall, Chatswood, on 21 September at 5pm. Tickets costing $38 (adult) or $31 (concession) can be booked online at,au or, by calling Ticketek on 1300 795 012 or visiting The Concourse Box Office from 9am-6pm Monday to Friday.

For immediate release

Jennie Lees, PhD,
Media Liaison & Public Information