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date: 17 October 2019

Brannigan, Owenlocked

  • Noël Goodwin


(b Annitsford, Northumberland, March 10, 1908; d Newcastle upon Tyne, May 9, 1973). English bass. He studied part-time at the GSM, London, and won its gold medal in 1942. He made his début in 1943 with the Sadler’s Wells Opera as Sarastro, and sang with the company until 1948, and again from 1952 to 1958. As well as specializing in Mozart and buffo characters, he created Britten’s Swallow (Peter Grimes, 1945), Collatinus (The Rape of Lucretia, 1946) and Superintendent Budd (Albert Herring, 1947); Britten later composed Noye (Noye’s Fludde, 1958) and Bottom (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 1960) for him; in the latter role he remains unsurpassed, as can be heard in his recording under the composer. Brannigan also created roles in operas by Malcolm Williamson and John Gardner. He performed at Glyndebourne from 1947 and at Covent Garden from ...

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