Winner of the Maureen Forrester Prize and the German Lied Award at the 2018 Concours Musical International de Montréal, Winner of the 2017 Wigmore Hall / Kohn Foundation International Song Competition, the 2017 Kathleen Ferrier Awards, and the 2015 Maureen Lehane Vocal Arts Award, British / New Zealand baritone Julien Van Mellaerts studied at the University of Otago, before joining the International Opera School of the Royal College of Music. His studies have been supported by the 2016 Kiwi Music Scholarship, a 2016 Countess of Munster Award, the Hunn Trust and the ongoing support of the Dame Kiri Te Kanawa Foundation. He graduated from the RCM in Summer 2017, having been a Fishmongers Company Scholar, supported by a Toeman Weinberger Award studying with Russell Smythe. On Graduation, he was awarded the Tagore Gold Medal. He is also a scholar and alumnus of the 2017 Verbier Festival Academy, the 2018 Heidelberger Frühling Lied Academy with Thomas Hampson, and the 2018 Bayreuth Festspiele Stipendium.
At the Royal College of Music, he sang Mr Gedge Albert Herring, Maître Pausanias Une education manquée, Nardo La finta giardiniera, Le Mari / Le Directeur Les mamelles de Tirésias and Gabriel von Eisenstein Die Fledermaus.
His engagements elsewhere have included Gustavo Faramondo for the London Handel Festival, Count Danilo The Merry Widow for Ryedale Festival Opera, Apollo L’Orfeo for Otago Opera, Schaunard La bohème for Haddo House Opera and Opera Holland Park as a Christine Collins Young Artist, Dandini La cenerentola for Diva Opera and Second Nazarene / Second Soldier Salome at the 2017 Verbier Festival.
Concert highlights have included the St John Passion and Messiah with the Orchestra of St John’s, Paul Carr’s Requiem for an Angel with the Bournemouth Symphony Chorus and the world première of Lewis Murphy’s Land Unknown at New Zealand House, The Genius of Mozart with the Orion Orchestra and Carmina Burana at The Snape Maltings. Recital engagements have included performances with Christopher Glynn at the Ryedale Festival and with Nigel Foster at the London Song Festival. His broadcasts include In Tune (BBC Radio 3), Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn (Rádio Clásica España) and Salome (Medici TV).
Highlights of 2017 / 2018 included performances with Julius Drake for the BBC Lunchtime Series at the Wigmore Hall, the Enniskillen International Beckett Festival and the Juan March Foundation, Madrid, The Referee Mozart vs Machine for Mahogany Opera Group, Harlekin Ariadne auf Naxos for Longborough Festival Opera, the title role in Eugene Onegin for Cambridge Philharmonic Society, Mr Fezziwig in the premiere of Will Todd’s A Christmas Carol for Opera Holland Park, Fauré Requiem with the English Festival Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall, Vaughan Williams Hodie with The London Chorus at Cadogan Hall, recitals for Leeds Lieder, Lewes Festival of Song and the London Song Festival and Elizabeth with the Royal Ballet at the Barbican Hall.
During 2018 / 2019, he tours with James Baillieu for Chamber Music New Zealand. His current engagements include further recitals with Julius Drake at the Pierre Boulez Saal, Berlin and at Temple Song, London, Schaunard La bohème for New Zealand Opera, the title role in Stanford’s The Travelling Companion for New Sussex Opera (to be recorded by SOMM Recordings), Britten War Requiem in Lincoln and Salisbury Cathedrals, Mahler Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen on tour with the Israel Camerata, A Heine Liederkreis at Oxford Lieder 2018, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa Foundation Concert at the Wigmore Hall, and recitals with Simon Lepper for the Canterbury Music Club and the Lied Festival Victoria de los Ángeles (LIFE Victoria), Barcelona.