“Brilliant Teacher… Excellent Instruction… Fabulous, capable and oozing enthusiasm"
Professional. Patient. Passionate.
Indian-Scottish Neil Balfour, is the first opera singer to be booked by the Glastonbury Festival as an artist “I cannot believe how powerful his voice is. I have never seen opera like he does it” - Haggis McLeod, head-programmer. He is the first performer to beatbox in an opera at Longborough Festival Opera and has premiered the roles of Nikolaus’ Father in Mysterious 44 (the first electronic opera) and La-La (role sponsored by the opera awards) in A Shoe Full of Stars (YAM Awards Best Opera 2018). "Neil is without a doubt one of the top singers I've ever worked with.” - Ruth Mariner, Director.
Currently an emerging artist at the National Opera Studio, a Concordia Artist, the first classical sE Artist, director of www.artsongstory.com (compelling videos of classical art-song and their stories) and founder of the Koko Koncerts (emerging classical stars in a coffee shop). Neil is also in partnership with Penhaligon’s British perfume house, Moment lenses, GIK Acoustics, Soundbrenner watches, Percival clothing and Kapow meggings. His voice-overs for YouTube channels have over 100 million views.
Due to the unfortunate circumstances surrounding Covid-19, Neil’s performance of Dark Cabaret (premiere) for Glastonbury Music Festival, La fanciulla del West for Opera North, Colline La bohème for Devon Opera, Comedy of Errors for the Royal Shakespeare Company and Guglielmo Così fan tutte for Mananan Opera (Isle of Man) have been cancelled.
Upcoming performances include song recitals for the Leeds Opera Festival, &Piano Festival and MadewithMusic.
Recent performances include Colline La bohème for Mananan Opera & OFMAN Opera Studio (Madrid), Mercurio La Calisto for Longborough Festival Opera, the nationwide tour of Aida with the Chorus of Opera North, Porgy & Bess at Leeds Town Hall and soloist for the Dore Male Voice Choir during a concert tour of Sicily.
Contemporary works have included recording Early Stroll (written for performance during Covid-19 lockdown) by Richard Barnard as well as premiering roles in A Shoe Full of Stars by Omar Sharyar, Nikolaus’ Father in Mysterious 44 by Kevin Malone, Best Man in Cheese by Lucy Armstrong (premiere at The Bridgewater Hall), Sam in a contemporary re-telling of Dorian Gray for Proper Job Theatre and Magnificat by Oliver Tarney and Convivium Records.
Neil has been a Young Artist for Buxton International Festival, sung Claggart Billy Budd for The Royal Opera House (L&P Department), covered Don Alfonso Così fan tutte for Opera Holland Park and the title role in Le nozze di Figaro for Longborough Festival Opera.
Neil teaches privately from his studio in Leeds as well as by request via high-quality video call using Zoom.
MMus at Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM)
PGDip Advanced Studies at RNCM
BA (Hons.) Music at Leeds College of Music
Grade 8 - Singing ABRSM
Grade 8 - Singing Rockschool
Grade 8 - Piano ABRSM
Grade 8 - Guitar NMA