Barbara Maria Rathbone was born in London to an Irish mother and an English father. Her love of singing and performance began when she debuted, aged two and a half, in 'Berry's', the local newsagent singing 'Twinkle, twinkle, little star’. Barbara Maria went on to study at Trinity College of Music, London where she studied with Morag Noble and John Wakefield, and since privately with Margaret Lobo, Dinah Harris, and Colin Baldy. She has taken part in a variety of masterclasses and opera programmes and worked with the likes of David Harper, Mark Shanahan, Robert Lloyd, David Lowe and Victor Morris.
Her opera debut was as Barbarina in 'Le Nozze di Figaro’. She has also sung Mozart’s Despina and Susanna and Gianetta in L’Elisir d’Amore.
Barbara Maria’s professional career has included being a recitalist on cruise ships and in venues across London. She has performed at the Barbican Centre, National Portrait Gallery, Royal Festival Hall, St James’s Church, Piccadilly, Royal Albert Hall in the BBC Proms, Arena di Verona, Chiswick House, the English Church in Rome, and the Bergen Festival, Norway.
Barbara Maria took a long sabbatical from singing to pursue a career as an artist’s manager and set up her own company Musica Universalis, successfully representing artists nationally and internationally and co-curating concerts at Wigmore Hall and the BBC Proms. Missing performance and singing, she returned to her former career in 2016, re-training as a versatile lyric soprano and studying vocal pedagogy in-depth. She set up a successful private teaching practice in 2017 and trained as a learning facilitator at the Royal Opera House for its outreach programme. This season she has performed with Fulham Opera in Verdi’s ‘Don Carlo’. Upcoming performances include Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta with Rose Opera, as an apprentice in Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg with Fulham Opera, and Frau Herz in Mozart’s Der Schauspieldirektor.