Victoria Songwei Li is a London-based Singaporean soprano. She began her musical education as a pianist and violinist from a young age.
A graduate of the Royal Academy of Music and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, she trained with Yvonne Kenny and Jennifer Dakin. During her time at the Guildhall, Victoria was the Leverhulme Arts Scholar and William Ganz Vocal Scholar. She is also the recipient of a UK Exceptional Talent Visa.
Victoria started singing lessons at the age of 17 in Singapore with Korean soprano Jeong AeRee, and made her operatic debut as Giannetta with New Opera Singapore in their 2012 production of Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore. Since then, opera roles have included Elle in La Voix Humaine (Poulenc), Tytania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Britten), Blanche in Les Dialogue des Carmélites (Poulenc) 2018, Poppea in L'incoronazione di Poppea (Monteverdi) 2017 and Cupidon in Orpheus in the Underworld (Offenbach) 2016 with New Opera Singapore, Cricket and Pepik (cover) in The Cunning Little Vixen (Janacek) as well as the Soprano solo in Riders to the Sea (Vaughan- Williams) in 2015 with the British Youth Opera, and First Singing Apple (cover) in Jonathan Dove's The Little Green Swallow also with the British Youth Opera in 2014, as well as being in the chorus of the world premiere of John Sharpley's political opera Fences in 2012. She also sang in the chorus of Royal Academy Opera's Suor Angelica (Puccini) in 2014. In scenes, she has sung the roles of Marie (La Fille du Regiment), Despina (Cosi fan tutte), Sandrina (La Finta Giardiniera), Susanna (Le Nozze di Figaro), Zerlina (Don Giovanni), 2nd Lady (Die Zauberflote), Virtu (L'incoronazione di Poppea), and Echo (Ariadne auf Naxos).
For the English National Opera, she has sung the roles of Mrs Delgado in Jake Heggie’s It’s A Wonderful Life, A Handmaid in Poul Ruders’ The Handmaid’s Tale, and covered the roles of Pepik and Woodpecker in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen.
Opera aside, Victoria is a keen song performer, and has performed song recitals in the Barbican Hall, Wigmore Hall, LSO St. Luke's, amongst others. She was also a part of the Royal Academy of Music/Kohn Foundation Bach Cantata during her time at the RAM.
In 2020, Victoria was the winner of the Opera Class in the David Clover Festival of Singing (UK) and the recipient of the Cyril Greaves Bursary.
In 2019, she was awarded First Prize and the Osaka Governor Award at the 20th International Osaka Music Competition in Japan.
She was also a finalist in the 2016 Singapore Lyric Opera - ASEAN Competition, and a semi-finalist in the VII Concurso Internacional de Canto Alfredo Kraus, the Jack Donnelly National Mozart Singing Competition 2017 and the Royal Over-Seas League Annual Music Competition 2018.
Orchestral work include soloist engagements with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel in their 2018 European tour, and the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. She also performed with the Guildhall Cantata Ensemble as a soprano soloist in Handel and Buxtehude Cantatas at the London Handel Festival conducted by James Johnstone.
She has had the opportunity to work in public masterclasses with Dame Sarah Connolly, Edith Wiens, Dennis O'Neill and Susan Bullock.
Victoria has been generously supported by The Leverhulme Trust, the Guildhall Trust, William Ganz Scholarship, Hamish Dyer Young Musicians' Scholarship, and the Countess of Munster Musical Trust Derek Butler Award.