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(b Mannheim, Feb 20, 1746; d Munich, Jan 10, 1786). German soprano . Her parents, the tenor Pietro Sarselli and his wife Carolina, were singers at Mannheim. She accompanied her future husband to Italy in 1760 and after her return to Mannheim in 1761 was appointed a court musician. She married Franz Wendling, the violinist and brother of Johann Baptist, on 1 December 1764. Beginning with the role of Cirene in Traetta’s Sofonisba (1762), she was cast in the seconda donna roles at the Hoftheater, singing opposite her sister-in-law, Dorothea. She accompanied the court to Munich in 1778, and there created her most famous role, Electra in Mozart’s Idomeneo (1781). She also sang the title role in Salieri’s Semiramide (1782); her last role was Zelmira in Prati’s Armida abbandonata (1785).

F. J. Lipowsky: Baierisches Musiklexikon (Munich, 1811) F. Walter: Geschichte des Theaters und der Musik am kurpfälzischen Hofe...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Buttstadt, Oct 25, 1942). German contralto . She studied in Weimar and Frankfurt, making her début in 1971 at Heidelberg as Gluck’s Orpheus. She has sung in Stuttgart, Munich, Cologne, Geneva, Amsterdam, Paris, Rome and Houston. She sang Erda and First Norn at Bayreuth (1976–80), performed in Landi’s ...

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David Cummings

(b Tǔrnovo, Sept 23, 1928; d Bad Ischl, Aug 12, 2013). Bulgarian tenor. After study in Sofia and Dresden he sang in East Germany from 1965 (Döbeln, Magdeburg and Halle). He sang Tristan at Dresden in 1975, and became a member of the Berlin Staatsoper the same year. At the Bayreuth Festival (...

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(b Weterlingen, Dec 24, 1694; d Stade, 1753). German bass . According to Walther, he was engaged as a treble by the Margravine of Culmbach in 1704 before singing in the Landesschulen and royal chapels at Magdeburg (1710), Brunswick (1711) and Wolfenbüttel (1713). In 1718 he enrolled at the University of Helmstedt, but ‘at the request of Gumbrecht, then director of the opera’, he went to the Hamburg Gänsemarkt in 1719; apart from a spell in Copenhagen from 1721 to 1723, he remained there until 1733 as leading bass. His repertory included Handel’s Curius (Giulio Cesare, 1725) and Tamerlane, Lucas in Keiser’s Der Hamburger Jahrmarkt and Die Hamburger Schlachtzeit and roles by Porta, J. P. Kunzen, Lully, Porpora and Caldara. He sang in at least ten operas by Telemann including Sancio, Das jauchzende Grossbritannien and Die verkehrte Welt (Philosopher), appearing as Apollo in ...

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(b Fränkisch Crumbach, Sept 9, 1842; d Frankfurt, May 28, 1899). German bass. He studied in Paris and made his début in Zürich in 1870. He was principal bass at Frankfurt (1873–7) and moved to Leipzig in 1878, remaining until 1882. His only North American performances were with the Adams-Pappenheim Company, on tour in ...

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Cori Ellison

(b Stapelburg, Dec 21, 1919; d Hamburg, May 17, 1980). German bass. After vocal studies with Philomena Herbst-Latour in Hamburg and Bender in Munich he made his operatic début in Kiel in 1938. His career was interrupted by World War II, but he resumed singing in 1946. He was engaged by many major German and Italian opera houses, also appearing in Barcelona, Brussels, Copenhagen, London, Paris, Vienna and Zürich. He became a member of the Hamburg State Opera in ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Vienna, Feb 13, 1913). Austrian baritone. At first a concert singer, he made his stage début in 1953 at Graz as Boccanegra. He sang in Düsseldorf, Frankfurt and Berlin and was engaged at the Staatsopern in Vienna (from 1957) and Munich (from 1960). At Salzburg he appeared in Pfitzner’s ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Nieder-Hollabrunn, Lower Austria, Dec 31, 1791; d Oberdöbling, nr Vienna, Jan 1, 1860). Austrian tenor . He sang in various theatre choruses in Vienna, then in 1811 made his début at the Theater an der Wien as Ramiro (Isouard’s Cendrillon). He then sang Tamino and Boieldieu’s Jean de Paris. After engagements in Darmstadt and Kassel, in ...

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Charles A. Jahant

revised by Elizabeth Forbes

(b Danville, va , Oct 18, 1922; d Bloomington, IN, Jan 29, 2012). American soprano . She studied in Philadelphia and New York, and made her début in 1946 as Butterfly with New York City Opera; she remained with the company until 1954, singing Aida, Mimì and Nedda. She also appeared in Philadelphia and with other companies in the USA and Canada; her repertory included Ilia and Marguerite. In ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

[Thomas ]

(b Burry Port, Llanelli, Aug 2, 1902). Welsh baritone . He studied in London at the Royal Academy of Music. From 1937 to 1945 he was engaged at Sadler’s Wells Opera. In 1947 he joined the newly formed Covent Garden Opera company, making his début as Balstrode (Peter Grimes...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Glasgow, c1936). Scottish soprano. She studied in Manchester and made her début in 1960 at Sadler’s Wells as a mezzo-soprano in the title role of La Cenerentola. She also sang Rosina for the WNO and Second Lady at Glyndebourne. As a soprano she created Jenny in The Mines of Sulphur (1965) and sang Ninetta (La gazza ladra) and Lisa (The Queen of Spades) at Sadler’s Wells and Mimì, Musetta and Ellen Orford for the WNO. For Scottish Opera she created Fulvia in Hamilton’s Catiline Conspiracy (1974) and the title role of Musgrave’s Mary, Queen of Scots (1977), also singing Countess Almaviva, Helena (A Midsummer Night’s Dream), the Governess (Turn of the Screw), Female Chorus (Rape of Lucretia), the Marschallin and Verdi’s Alice Ford. She sang Nicolai’s Mrs Ford at Wexford (...

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Katherine K. Preston

(b Edinburgh, Dec 25, 1800; d Quebec City, July 9, 1849). Scottish tenor. He studied with Lanza and Crivelli, and made his operatic début in Edinburgh (March 1830); subsequently he was very successful at Covent Garden and Drury Lane. His American début (15 October 1838) was with the National Theatre, New York, and he then toured for 20 highly successful months with Jane Shirreff, performing in New York, Boston, Providence, Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia and Charleston. He returned to London in May 1840. Wilson and Shirreff were the most successful English singers to perform in the USA in the late 1830s and early 1840s; they helped to cultivate further the growing American taste for opera. One of the most successful 19th-century performers of Scottish song, Wilson published an Edition of the Songs of Scotland in 1842. He returned to North America for another tour in ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Lubbock, tx, June 4, 1956; d New York, Aug 21, 2000). American tenor. Making his début in 1980 at Wolf Trap as Fenton, he created Dog in Mollicone’s Starbird for Texas Opera Theater, Houston (1981), then toured with the company. He made his European début in ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(Liebenthaler )

(b Vienna, Jan 30, 1833; d Vienna, Sept 24, 1891). Austrian soprano . She studied in Vienna and made her début in 1865 at Graz as Donna Anna. In 1866–7 she sang Norma at Covent Garden (under the name Maria Vilda). From 1867 to 1877 she was engaged at the Vienna Hofoper, singing Elvira (Don Giovanni) at the opening of the new Opera House (1869) and Aida at the first performance of Verdi’s opera in Vienna (1874). She created Sulamith in Goldmark’s Königin von Saba (1875). Returning to Covent Garden she sang Marguerite de Valois, Lucrezia Borgia, Alice (Robert le diable) and Semiramide (1874–5). Moving to Leipzig, she sang Brünnhilde in one of the first complete Ring cycles outside Bayreuth. In 1886 she returned to Vienna and in 1887 she sang Donna Elvira at Salzburg in the centenary performance of Mozart’s ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Duisburg, March 3, 1924). German tenor . He studied in Hanover, making his début in 1957 at Bayreuth as Augustin Moser (Meistersinger) and Shepherd (Tristan und Isolde). Engaged at Zürich (1958) and Cologne (1960), he also sang in Frankfurt, Vienna, Berlin, Munich, Hamburg, Geneva, Madrid and Bologna. He returned to Bayreuth (1977) as Parsifal, made his American début at Chicago (1980) as Don Ottavio, created Publisher Mech in Cerha’s Baal at Salzburg (1981) and made his Covent Garden début (1984) as the Captain in Wozzeck. His repertory ranges from Mozart’s Idomeneus to Lohengrin, Erik, Loge and Florestan. A powerful actor and a fine musician, he excels in 20th-century roles such as the Emperor, Duke Cattaneo (Schoeck’s Massimilla Doni), Prince/Marquis (Lulu), Peter Grimes (which he sang at Zürich in 1989...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Ebensee, 1885; d Rottach-Egern am Tegernsee, Feb 15, 1954). Austrian tenor . He studied in Munich and made his début in 1906 at Bayreuth as the Young Sailor (Tristan und Isolde) and an Esquire (Parsifal). Engaged at Frankfurt from 1906 to 1922, he was the first German Pelléas (...

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Harold Rosenthal

(b Bremen, March 19, 1911). German tenor . He studied in Bremen and made his début there in 1930. After engagements in Wiesbaden as Nando (Tiefland) and in Breslau, he sang David at Bayreuth (1943–4), returning in 1952 as Loge, a role to which he was particularly suited and which he sang at Covent Garden during the 1950s. He sang regularly at the Berlin Staatsoper and Städtische Oper, where in 1947 he was the first Berlin Grimes. In 1957 at short notice he sang the role of Walther in English in his own production of Die Meistersinger at Covent Garden. In 1961 he was appointed chief resident director at Frankfurt and in 1967 resident director at the Berlin Staatsoper. He appeared at the Metropolitan Opera during 1938–9 in roles including Froh, Mime and the Holy Fool in Boris Godunov. A highly intelligent singer, he lacked the voice necessary for an international career....

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Cleveland, oh , Feb 15, 1926). American baritone. After studying in the USA he was engaged in 1952 at Stuttgart, where he sang for over 30 years. He appeared at Hamburg and Frankfurt, sang Olivier (Capriccio) in 1963 at Glyndebourne, took the part of Alfred Ill in the American première of Einem’s ...

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Richard LeSueur

revised by Elizabeth Forbes

(b Atlanta, ga , Nov 6, 1928; d Lakeland, FL, August 14, 2005). American mezzo-soprano . She studied in Atlanta and Philadelphia. In 1952 she made her début as Dinah in Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti (CBS TV) and also sang Dinah for her début with New York City Opera (1958). She took part in the première of Menotti’s Labyrinth (NBC TV, 1963). She created the title role of Douglas Moore’s Carry Nation at Kansas University, Lawrence (1966), then sang the role in San Francisco (the first professional performance) and for New York City Opera (1968). Other roles included Cherubino, Siébel, Carmen, Sextus (Giulio Cesare), Sara (Roberto Devereux) and Leona in the première of Menotti’s The Most Important Man (1971). She also appeared in Chicago, San Diego and Cincinnati, in a repertory that included Desideria (Saint of Bleecker Street...

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Noël Goodwin

(Geoffrey )

(b Chester, Jan 16, 1937). English tenor . He was educated at Chester Cathedral Choir School, becoming head chorister, then studied at the RCM. After singing with the Glyndebourne Festival chorus, 1962–4, he joined the BBC Singers in 1964 and the ENO in 1972, making a notable début as Pierre Bezukhov in War and Peace (Prokofiev). He spent 12 years with the ENO as principal tenor, his roles there and elsewhere including Calaf, Radames, Siegfried, Rienzi, Bacchus and Herod. He has sung in several Janáček and contemporary operas, including Owen Wingrave (Britten) and The Bassarids (Henze). He created roles in The Royal Hunt of the Sun (Hamilton), Toussaint (Blake) and A Gentle Spirit (Tavener), and his Covent Garden début was in 1988 as Aegisthus (Elektra). Abroad he has sung in most continental and Scandinavian countries, and with the ENO at the Metropolitan in 1984 (War and Peace...