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X Factor star to perform in Somerset at 10th anniversary celebrations

Jonathan Ansell
Jonathan Ansell

X FACTOR star Jonathan Ansell is joining a special performance in Somerset of an internationally acclaimed oratorio by local composer Martin Emslie.

The G4 and Les Musicals tenor will be one of top soloists taking part in the event at Westlands, Yeovil, on April 16.

He will be joined by Castle Cary-based mezzo soprano Marta Fontanals-Simmons, who recently performed at the Royal Opera House, and bass baritone John Savournin of the English National Opera.

The show marks the 10th anniversary of the world premier of Omega and Alpha, which was first staged at Wells Cathedral.

The oratorio is a retelling of the Easter Passion story, in a fusion of sacred and theatrical music. Since the premiere, it has been performed nationwide to critical acclaim.

The piece was written by classical music director Martin Emslie, of Castle Cary, who will be conducting on the night with a 60 member choir.

Jonathan Ansell will sing the role of Jesus in the oratorio.

He shot to fame on the first series of the X-Factor in 2004 where he, as part of pop opera group G4, came second and went on to top the charts with three albums and four sell-out tours.

He is one of the UK's best known tenors and has sold more than two million albums.

Jonathan starred in the popular ‘Les Musicals’ tour in 2022 with Britain’s Got Talent Winner Jai McDowall.

He says: “I hope everyone will come and enjoy this brilliant work when it is performed live in Yeovil.

"I am delighted to be back with this music 10 years on since we premiered it at Wells Cathedral.”

Composer Martin Emslie said: “This is a very special anniversary celebration for me, for so many reasons.

"The original performance at Wells Cathedral had the most incredible reception, it led to Omega and Alpha being performed widely and translated into German and Spanish.

"Choirs are preparing to perform the work in countries as far away as India, Cuba, Germany, Mexico, and Venezuela.

“It will be wonderful to perform my oratorio again on my ‘home turf’ and I am honoured that Jonathan, Marta and John have agreed to take part."