KELLY POUKENS 2019 ⓒ
Belgian soprano Kelly Poukens (*1992) is the winner of the Stiftung Blatow prize in the International Anton Rubinstein Competition (Germany, 2018), the silver award in the Manhattan International Music Competition (USA, 2017), she was runner-up in the Honda Competition for Classical Music (2017, Brussels, Belgium), won the Prix Sophie, Laureates Award and Audience Price during the finals and preliminaries of the Princess Christina Competition (2012, The Hague, the Netherlands).
She made an international impression singing the leading roles of “Designer” in the contemporary opera’s: WEAR (short listed for the Scottish New Music Awards 2019), “Storyteller’ in ROBE (nominated for the creative Edinburgh awards 2019 and reviewed by BBC as “impressive excellent”) and “Human” in WOAD composed by A.White. (London, United Kingdom). .
Other recent opera highlights have included “Trio Girl” in Trouble in Tahiti (Bernstein - Dutch National Opera, The Netherlands), “Sand und Taumänchen” in Hänsel und Gretel (Humperdinck – Reisopera, The Netherlands), “Frasquita” in Carmen (Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, De Doelen, The Netherlands), “Regan” in King Lear (Verdi/Markies - Holland Opera, The Netherlands), “Anitra” in Peer Gynt (Grieg - Brussels philharmonic, Het banket, Belgium) “Marie” in the children opera “Meermeisje” (Van Geel - Holland Opera, The Netherlands). She was part of the ensemble in Un Ballo Mascara (Verdi – Opera Zuid) and C(H)OEURS 2020 (Alain Platel -Vlaamse Opera & ballet, Belgium). She performed the speaking role of “La servante” in Manon (Massenet -Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Paris) and played the role of “Marie-Christine” in the music theatre play Landru (Het Banket, Belgium) together with Belgium well known actor Jan Decleire..
As a chamber musician Kelly has given solo lied recitals in famed venues as the Henry Le Boeuf hall BOZAR Centre for Fine Arts (Belgium) and Het Muziekgebouw Frits Philips (The Netherlands). She made her Concertgebouw debut under the baton of Christian Arming (The Netherlands) as “Uxor Pilati” in the Mathew Passion under the baton of Marc Albrecht. Other highlights have included the soprano solo’s in the music of Morricone in Liege and Brussels, the orchestral song “I shall love but thee” (van der Roost) for soprano solo and wood/brassband with the Royal Symfonic Band of the Belgian Guides.
Kelly made recordings of her role in the opera ROBE & WOAD (White) both released by the Métier Records (2020/2021), the orchestral song “I shall love but thee” (van der Roost) and “Dream with me” (Bernstein) released by NLBB (2019, Belgium) and broadcasted by the BBC sounds, the song cycle “De Innigheid der dingen” (Swerts) released by Kurt Bikkembergs (2014, Belgium).
At the LUCA School of Arts (Leuven, Belgium) she obtained her Master’s degree in classical singing (suma cum laude) and later on her Master’s degree in Chamber Music. At the Fontys School of Fine and Performing Arts, Kelly was named talent–laureate as she obtained her Master’s degree suma cum laude in Classical Music theatre (Tilburg, the Netherlands, 2017). She felt delighted and honoured to be accepted as a participant in the London Masterclasses at the Royal Northern College of Music (Manchester, United Kingdom, 2017). She was artist in residence for TalentLab (Luxembourgh, 2021).
Currently Kelly is coached by the Dutch mezzo-soprano Jard van Nes and American soprano Roberta Alexander. She regularly takes private classes with the English soprano Dame Felicity Lott and the American mezzo soprano Jennifer Larmore.
Jennifer Larmore, Benjamin Zander, Robert Holl, Rudolf Jansen, Marien van Nieukerken, Maarten Koningsberger, Miranda van Kralingen, Stefan Veselka, Ed Spanjaard, Alexander Oliver, Karin Bloemen, Pia Douwes, Roberta Alexander, Jard van Nes, Dame Felicity Lott