Opera Scotland

Willard White Suggest updates

Sir Willard White.

Born St Catherine, Jamaica, 10 October 1946.

Jamaican bass.

Sir Willard White studied music at the Jamaica School of Music.  In 1968 he received a scholarship to complete his musical education in New York at the Juilliard School of Music, where he perticipated in a famous series of master classes held by Maria Callas.  He began his professional career at the New York City Opera.

His European debut, in 1976, was with Welsh National Opera (Osmin) and he made his London debut, under Simon Rattle, as Porgy.  Since then he has appeared with all the major British companies. At Glyndebourne he has sung Sarastro in the John Cox production of Die Zauberflöte, designed by David Hockney.  He returned for Porgy in Trevor Nunn's staging of Porgy and Bess, conducted by Simon Rattle..

Appearances with Scottish Opera include Cavalli (Vulcan Orion);  Mozart (Osmin, Leporello);  Wagner (Wotan Das Rheingold & Die Walküre),  Dvořák (Vodnik Rusalka).

He has worked with European companies include Florence, Munich, Geneva and Amsterdam.

His operatic roles cover a wide range, including Monteverdi (Seneca); Handel (POlyphemus);  Mozart (Osmin, Leporello, Don Giovanni, Sarastro); Beethoven (Pizarro);  Wagner (Dutchman,  Fafner,  Wotan);  Verdi (Banquo, Ferrando, Monk Don Carlos, Ramfis);   Musorgsky (Pimen);  Tchaikovsky (Gremin);  Dvořák (Vodnik); Debussy (Golaud);  Strauss (Orestes);  Schoenberg (Moses); Gershwin (Porgy).

His concert repertoire includes Verdi (Messa da Requiem);  Britten (War Requiem);  Adams (El Niño).

As a straight actor he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company for a season to play the title role in Othello directed by Sir Trevor Nunn (who had directed the Glyndebourne Porgy and Bess) and with Sir Ian McKellen as Iago.

Roles in Scotland

Osmin the Pasha's overseer
Entführung aus dem Serail 1978
Leporello Giovanni's servant
Don Giovanni 1979
Don Giovanni 1985
Orest son of Klytämnestra and Agamemnon
Elektra 1979
Vulcano god of fire
Orion 1984
Timur exiled King of Tartary
Turandot 1984
Turandot 2014
Messa da Requiem 1984
Wotan leader of the gods
Rheingold 1989
Wotan father of the Valkyries and Volsungs
Valkyrie 1991
War Requiem 1991
Moses und Aron 1992
Niño 2010
Vodník a water goblin, Rusalka's father
Rusalka 2016
Don Fernando the King's Minister
Fidelio 2022

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