Opera Scotland

Heddle Nash Suggest updates

Born London, 14 June 1896.

Died London, 14 August 1961.

English tenor.

Heddle Nash had a long and successful career as a lyric tenor both in opera and oratorio.  He was an ideal interpreter of Mozart, while still having the power to project some of the leading roles by Verdi, Puccini and Massenet.  His interpretation of David in Die Meistersinger was also much admired.  After initial training in London he also studied with Giuseppe Borghatti in Milan, where he made his debut as Almaviva in 1924.

On returning to Britain in 1925 he sang under the Lilian Baylis management at both the Old Vic and Sadler's Wells.   He then joined BNOC until its demise.   From 1928-39 he was with its successor company at Covent Garden.   He also appeared in the early Glyndebourne seasons (1934-38).  During the war he toured with Carl Rosa before rejoining Covent Garden for the opening 1947-48 season.

One highlight of his concert career was the creation of one of the sixteen solo roles in the Serenade to Music by Vaughan Williams for Sir Henry Wood's birthday in 1938.

Towards the end of his career, he worked with the New Opera Company at Sadler's Wells, creating the part of Dr Manette in The Tale of Two Cities (Arthur Benjamin 1957).

In 1927 two early complete opera recordings, Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci, were made by the Columbia company using BNOC forces.  Heddle Nash can be heard as Turiddu in Cavalleria. and Beppe in Pagliacci.

His son, John Heddle Nash (1928-94) was a baritone who worked with both Carl Rosa and Sadler's Wells in leading roles.

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