From star turn… to security guard: Opening ceremony soprano who sang in front of Prince Charles has two roles at Commonwealth Games
- Samantha Oxborough, 28, sang in opening ceremony of Commonwealth Games
- Tomorrow, the mezzo-soprano will don her overalls as a security guard at event
- She said: ‘It was a shock… it’s the biggest thing I have ever done in my whole life’
Last night, she sang an operatic rendition of the National Anthem in front of Prince Charles at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony.
Tomorrow, Samantha Oxborough will be at the Games again – donning her overalls to work as a security guard.
The 28-year-old mezzo-soprano was the main singer of the anthem at Birmingham’s Alexander Stadium. In her other role, she will be keeping the public safe.
She undertook training to gain her Security Industry Authority licence during lockdown to allow her to work in the industry, having been a steward since 2014, a job she did alongside her musical training.
She said: ‘It was a shock [to be asked to sing at the opening ceremony] because it is the biggest thing I’ve done in my whole life – I have never done anything like this.
Mezzo-soprano Samantha Oxborough, 28, performed an operatic rendition of the National Anthem at the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham
‘My former lecturer at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, Paul Wingfield, was approached by the Games’ organisers and he put my name forward. They contacted me and said, “We would love you to be the main singer for the national anthem”.
‘I was a bit overwhelmed, but I am excited for the opportunity. I was asked in April but I had to sign an NDA (non disclosure agreement), so I was not allowed to tell anyone the situation. It is going to be incredible.’
Miss Oxborough began singing aged six at Sabden primary school in Lancashire, where her talents were spotted by school choir master David Wilkinson – who trained with one of famed Italian tenor Luciano Pavarotti’s singing teachers.
Though she is also focused on her other job which will see her provide security at the event’s various venues.
But on Friday, Ms Oxborough – who has a Security Industry Authority licence – will perform another role at the games as a security guard
She said: ‘It’s pretty cool. It is going to be interesting going from one to another, but it (security) is what I know and what I do. I am very professional and understand security is very important to keep everyone safe.
‘Even though I’ll still be buzzing from my performance, I will have to put that aside to focus on what is important for the client which are the Commonwealths.’
The opera singer has previously performed in front of the Prince of Wales at a Prince’s Trust charity evening a decade ago and is relishing today’s opportunity.
She added: ‘It’s amazing to be able to share my talent and be part of such an incredible ceremony.’
Duran Duran will headline the opening ceremony, which will take place in front of a live audience of 30,000 people and will be watched by an estimated television audience of more than one billion. It will be broadcast live on BBC One.
It will also feature Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.
Peaky Blinders’ writer and creator, Steven Knight, is executive producer.