Photo of Lewis Gaston Conducting
Music Director Lewis Gaston

Lewis Gaston ( works as a conductor in the UK and abroad. His work has been recognised in international competitions, masterclasses and he enjoys a schedule of work that combines performance and research. As well as conducting across the UK he has worked with the Brasov Philarmonic (Romania), Toscana Classica Orchestra (Italy), Berlin Sinfonietta (Germany), Camerata di Fiorentina (Italy) and the State Opera Rousse (Bulgaria). Lewis is currently Music Director/Assistant Music Director to a number of orchestras and opera companies within the UK.

Lewis is Music Director to the English Schools’ Orchestra and Assistant Musical Director to the Easter Orchestral Society. He works as Guest Conductor to orchestras around the country. 
Lewis specialises in Opera conducting with a repertoire of around 50 operas. As a lecturer and conductor for Opera Prelude, Lewis has given the UK premiere of Mercadante’s opera Don Chisciotte alle nozze di Gamaccio  and lectured on a wide variety of opera subjects.

Photo of Stage Director Valeria Perboni
Stage Director Valeria Perboni

Valeria started her career as a performer (singer and actress) in Italy, while studying Piano accompaniment and Opera Studies (BA) at the local Conservatoire where she studied classical piano, classical singing, jazz singing and musical theatre. She graduated in 2016 and her thesis Fratellanza a teatro (a work on the role of Mantova’s main opera theatre in the musical and historical events of the Italian Risorgimento) won an award for best dissertation, and was subsequently published by LIM. 

In 2018 she completed her MA in Musical Theatre at the Royal Academy of Music and received the DipRAM award for Outstanding Performance. Since then, she has been performing both on stage and on screen in London and internationally for amongst others the Barbican Centre, BBC, Channel 4, Abbey Road and BBC Radio. Valeria holds a master’s degree in Music Psychology and Neuroscience (MSc, Goldsmiths University of London) and has been working as a music psychologist and music consultant for companies like BBC Sounds, Institute of Contemporary Arts and Music Tree.

Valeria started shifting her focus to directing in 2018, firstly as a theatre facilitator and movement director, then moving into experimental immersive new media and immersive film, with her project The Synaesthesia Room being amongst only 6 finalists at Cannes Film Festival XR Development Showcase, and then expanding to one of her oldest passions: opera.

In 2021 she started an MA in Opera Directing with Verona Opera Academy, which allowed her to work with and learn from internationally recognised directors, and over the summer 2022 Valeria was assistant director for the Zeffirelli production of Turandot at the Arena di Verona Opera Festival, where she had the pleasure to work with world-renowned artists such as Anna Netrebko, Yusuf Eyvazov, Ferruccio Furlanetto, Oksana Dyka, Maria Teresa Leva, Ruth Iniesta, Riccardo Fassi, Carlo Bosi and more. 
In 2022 she directed a production of Lucia di Lammermoor for Instant Opera, which marked Valeria’s directorial debut in the UK, and she has recently been invited back to directed their next production: La Traviata. In 2023, Valeria directed amongst others Verdi’s Macbeth at Hoxton Hall for Uncovered Opera, Suor Angelica for Opera Greenwich’s debut production and La Boheme for Amick Productions’ London and South East tour. She also worked as 2023’s Artist in Residence at Brunel University London, where she focused on multisensory art and neurodiversity, culminating with the International Synaesthesia Art Exhibition at OXO Tower in central London, which Valeria produced and curated, and where she exhibited some of her own multisensory work.
Click here for Valeria’s website.

Pianist Judith Flint
Rehearsal pianist Judith Flint

Judith Flint L.R.A.M.  – Accompanist – Judith studied piano accompanying, clarinet and singing at the Royal Academy of Music. Since leaving in 1976, she has worked as a freelance accompanist for singers and instrumentalists, and as a rehearsal pianist for choral, opera and dance groups. Judith now lives in New Malden, Surrey and is rehearsal pianist for Park Opera, and Guildford Opera.  She is also a regular accompanist for concerts arranged by Music in Hospitals.