Forgotten Opera Singers

Forgotten Opera Singers

Dec 19, 2015

Robert Radford (Bass) (Nottingham, United Kingdom 13 May 1874 – London, England 3 March 1933)

He studied singing at the Royal Academy of Music in London under Albert Randegger, Battison Haynes and Frederick King and made his concert debut at the Norwich Music Festival in 1899. In 1904 he made his stage debut at Covent Garden in London as Commendatore in ''Don Giovanni'' under Hans Richter. He was again engaged for Richter's ''Ring cycle'' in 1908, taking the roles of Fasolt in ''Das Rheingold'', Hunding in ''Die Walküre'', and Hagen in ''Götterdämmerung''. In 1910 he appeared in the English première of d'Alberts ''Tiefland''. In  1909 he sang in the premiere of the opera ''The Angelus'' by Naylor. In 1910 he performed at the His Majesty's Theatre in operas of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, among other things as Osmin in ''Die Entführung aus dem Serail''. In  the 1911-1919 seasons he was engaged as the first bass by the Beecham Opera  Company. One of his best roles was Boris Godunov. In 1921 he belonged to the founders of the British National Opera Company, whose management he took over. In 1929 he became a professor of the Royal Academy of Music in London. His daughter, Winifred Radford (1901-1993), sang among other things at the Glyndebourne Festival. 

Chronology of some appearances

1904 London Covent Garden Don Giovanni (Commendatore)
1908 London Covent Garden Das Rheingold (Fasolt)
1908 London Covent Garden Die Walküre (Hunding)
1908 London Covent Garden Götterdämmerung (Hagen)
1910 London His Majesty's Theatre Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Osmin)


G&T, London 1906-09-11
Rocked in the cradle of the deep (Knight) 3-2788  8928b

Gramophone, London 1909-07-02
Samson (Händel): Honour and arms 02209 3411f

Zonophone, Hayes 1914-07-15
Philémon et Baucis (Gounod): Vulcan's song X-3-42126 ak 18121e
Faust (Gounod): The Calf of Gold X-3-42127 ak18124e

HMV, Hayes 1914-10-01
The call to arms (Thompson) 4-2508 ak18298e

Zonophone, London 1915-02-15
Zauberflöte (Mozart): O Isis and Osiris X-3-42484 Ho1157b

Zonophone, Hayes 1916-08-16
Entführung aus dem Serail (Mozart): Ah! My pretty brace of fellows X-3-42814 y20291e

HMV, London 1918-02-20
Boris Godounov (Moussorgsky): My power is absolute  D115 Ho3086af
Entführung aus dem Serail (Mozart): When a maiden takes your fancy D114 Ho3088af

Zonophone, Hayes 1918-03-26
Acis and Galatea (Händel): I rage, I melt, I burn... O ruddier the the X-3-42933 y21061e
I would I were a King (Sullivan) X-3-42990 y21062e

HMV, London 1920-11-23
The Tempest (Purcell): Arise ye subterranean winds D530 Ho4642-2af

HMV, London 1921-10-24
Shipmates o'mine (Sanderson) 4-2494x Bb583

HMV, London 1922-12-08
Walküre (Wagner): Brünnhilde's battle cry with Austral D680 (3-0819) 

HMV, London 1922-12-11
Walküre (Wagner): Wotan warns Brünnhilde not to disobey with Austral D680 (3-0820)

HMV, London 1923-02-13
Had a horse (Hungarian folk song, arr Korbay) unpubl Bb2580
Shepherd, see thy horse's foaming mane (Hungarian folk song, arr Korbay) E351 (5-2990)

HMV, London 1923-06-25
Reine de Saba (Gounod): She alone charmeth my sadness (Sous les pieds) 02294x Cc3146

HMV, London 1925-01-05 (ac)
Israel in Egypt (Händel): The Lord is a Man of war with Peter Dawson D967 (04386)

HMV, London 1925-07-31
Parsifal (Wagner): The Grail scene, pt 3 with Walker D1029 (4-0725)
Parsifal (Wagner): Gurnemanz leads Parsifal to Montsalvat (Vom Bade kehrt) with Widdop D1027 (4-0720)
Parsifal (Wagner): Gurnemanz reproaches Parsifal (Unerhörtes Werk! Du konntest morden) with Baker TRC: with Widdop D1026 (4-0719)

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