Jeffrey Talbot

Picture of Jeffrey Talbot

Jeffrey Talbot sings Il talismano: Candido fiore


Jeffrey Talbot, Welsh tenor and singing teacher, died in Porthcawl, on 26 January 2019, aged 73. He was born on 4 February 1945 in Aberavon, South Wales and studied music and singing at the Cardiff College of Music. He furthered his studies for six months at the London Opera Centre and then with the Spanish tenor and singing teacher, Eduardo Asquez. He began his professional career after winning the Tenor Prize at the National Eisteddford of Wales in 1966 and the Welsh final of the Cinzano Opera Scholarship.

He trained for two years with Welsh National Opera and toured extensively with their Opera For All group, singing various roles, including amongst others Nemorino in "L’elisir d’amore".

In 1970, he moved to London to become a freelance artiste and subsequently toured with the English Opera For All group, singing the roles of Narciso in "Il turco in Italia" and Ferrando in "Così fan tutte". He also sang the role of Oronte in the British premiere of Alessandro Scarlatti’s "La Statira" at the Camden Festival. Later he toured extensively with the English Opera group performing at the Aldeburgh Festival and Drottningholm Court Theatre, Stockholm. He appeared in concert performances of two Bellini operas at Harewood House, "Bianca e Fernando" and "Adelson e Salvini".

He was a tenor with a high range and one of his specialized roles was that of Orphée in the Paris version of Gluck’s "Orphée et Eurydice", which he performed at both Camden and Harlow Festivals.

In 1973, he sang the role of Ernesto in "Don Pasquale" in Johannesburg, South Africa, and in the English Opera Group production of Mozart’s "Idomeneo". He was engaged at the English National Opera Company for whom he had sung the role of the Italian Singer in "Der Rosenkavalier" and in 1988 as Count Almaviva in "Il barbiere di Siviglia".

Jeffrey Talbot sang oratorio, gave numerous solo recitals in England and Wales and undertook extensive concert tours which took him all over the world, including a command performance for the Thai royal family in Bangkok, a gala concert at the San Carlos, Lisbon for the president of Portugal in 1988 and "Messiah" in Tokyo in 1991.

He was the first British tenor to be invited to sing at the Teatru Manoel in Malta in 1986, singing Alfredo in "La traviata" and Pinkerton in "Madama Butterfly".

In Wales, in 1986 he premiered the Andrew Lloyd Webber "Requiem" at St. David’s Hall, Cardiff. Together with the Welsh baritone, the late Sir Geraint Evans, he recorded four operatic programmes for the HTV network "The Story and the Song" in 1987. He made several recordings, most notably "The Golden Tenor" released by EMI.

Jeffrey Talbot was a widely respected singing teacher in London, his many pupils include Tina Baker, Nadine Benjamin, Sandra Ford, Susanna Hurrell, Ben Johnson, Colin Lee and Patricia Rozario to name but a few.
John Freere Perry

I wish to thank John Freere Perry for the obituary and the picture.

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