michael john white 

stage and performance photography

Michael has had a keen interest in the arts since childhood.

He was musically gifted as a child, studying the piano and violin from an early age, gaining a place at the Yehudi Menuhin School where he was a pupil from the age of ten. He was an undergraduate at the Royal Northern College of Music, studying the piano as well second study in conducting. After post-graduate studies at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst, Frankfurt am Main and participating in international piano competitions he decided to do further study, this time in the field of opera, accepting a place at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama as a répétiteur scholar. He subsequently underwent further training as a répétiteur at the National Opera Studio as well as taking on the post of Trainee Répétiteur at English National Opera. He has worked for number of opera companies in the UK, including Scottish Opera and The Royal Opera, Covent Garden. He continues to work in this field.

As a photographer, Michael is primarily self-taught. From an early age he has had a camera, and even as a pre-adolescent boy he was attempting to do more than take snapshots with a point and shoot camera, including things like shooting multiple images to create a panoramic shot, then assembling the photos in the photo-album. As a teenager he was given his first SRL 35mm camera, quickly learning how to save film by attempting to avoid taking too many dud shots by keeping a notebook with the full details of lens, ISO, shutterspeed and aperture in order that he could study what worked and what didn’t. During this time he started to develop an interest in various technical aspects and their possibilities in expression. Since owning a DSLR Michael’s style has developed further, covering a wide range of photographic subjects and differing techniques. His art photography is linked together by the way in which repetition and form interact, whether it be the rigour of architecture, or the freedom of abstracts, something for which he is particularly fond due to its artistic possibilities. His performance photography combines his technical skill as a photographer with an insider’s knowledge of theatre and he enjoys the challenges of working in an environment of constant change, with the difficulties encountered both in capturing the varying light states and of the movement and expressions of the performers.


© Cosimo Matteini 2015. Photo reproduced with kind permission.