The Australian tenor’s latest role debut sees him reflecting on repertoire and mixing a musical cocktail or two.

Meeting Stuart Skelton, you get the impression early on that here is man firmly in control of his career. He knows the scope and limitations of his rare heldentenor voice and chooses new roles very carefully. This will be the first time he has broken into the Verdi repertoire and has been waiting for all the boxes to be ticked. Orchestra, conductor and director and an opera company he is comfortable with.

I am sure both he and English National Opera are hoping to reproduce the huge success that the same team made of Peter Grimes(a role that Australians saw him encompass a few years ago in Neil Armfield’s excellent production). It soon becomes clear in our interview that David Alden (director) and Edward Gardner (conductor) have been highly influential in Skelton’s career development and he is very comfortable to try something new with their support.

Stuart Skelton in OA’s Peter Grimes

Chatting over the double expresso that kick-start’s his day, we talk about what challenges faced him tackling...