Tenor Ryland Davies has died age 80
Wednesday, November 8, 2023
Making his professional and Glyndebourne debut at 21, he championed the character roles of Mozart and Rossini
The Welsh tenor Ryland Davies has died at the age of 80. The lyric tenor was noted for his roles in the operas of Mozart and Rossini which he played in major opera houses across the world. Born in the mining village of Cym in south Wales, Davies trained at the Royal Manchester College of Music under Frederic Cox, then at the age of 21 he made his professional and Glyndebourne debut as Count Almaviva in Rossini’s The Barber of Seville. There in 1965 he became the first recipient of the John Christie Award. A few years later he made his Royal Opera House debut as Hylas in Berlioz’s Les Troyens conducted by Sir Colin Davis. Davies was in demand across the world; Otello at the Salzburg Festival (under the baton of Karajan), Così fan tutte at the Met and the Paris Opéra. Later in his career he took to more heavier character roles; Alfredo in Puccini’s La Traviata, Wether in Massenet’s Werther and Oberon in Weber’s Oberon.
Davies made numerous recordings over his career – mostly in the form of video. His Glyndebourne performances of A Midsummer Night's Dream, as well as Love for Three Oranges, Kátya Kabanová and Die Entführung aus dem Serail were all filmed. He featured as Ferrando under the baton of Solti in a recording of Così fan tutte, Normanno in Lucia di Lammermor with Sir Charles Mackerras and numerous vocal recordings including the Mozart Requiem and C minor Mass under Sir Colin Davis.
Davies was Professor of Singing at the Royal Academy of Music and gave masterclasses all over the world from the UK, Argentina, Chicago and Houston.
Born February 9, 1943; died November 5, 2023