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Maureen Forrester


Canada’s most well-known contralto, Maureen Forrester, began her vocal research with Sally Martin in Montreal and later on studied with Frank Rowe and Bernard Diamant. Her initial professional appearance emerged in a recital at Montreal in 1953, and she started a musical cooperation with pianist John Newmark which lasted until his loss of life in 1991. In 1955 she visited Paris to get a recital, and her NY debut recital was twelve months later on. That recital brought her to the eye of Bruno Walter who asked her to sing the contralto solos in the next Symphony of Mahler with the brand new York Philharmonic the next time of year. This appearance was the start of her international popularity, as Walter regarded as her a superb interpreter of Mahler’s music. Through the early years of her profession, she focused on concert and recital applications. Her first essential operatic appearance arrived in 1962 at Toronto in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice. In 1966 she debuted at the brand new York Town Opera as Cornelia in Handel’s Giulio Cesare with Beverly Sills and Norman Treigle. She produced her Metropolitan Opera debut as Erda in Das Rheingold in 1975. Her superb comic timing brought crucial acclaim on her behalf appearances because the Step-Mother in Massenet’s Cendrillon, the Witch in Hansel and Gretel so when the Fairy Queen in Sullivan’s Iolanthe at Stratford. In her old age, she is at great demand because the Countess in Tchaikovsky’s Queen of Spades and in Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmelites. From 1965 to 1974, she was an associate from the Bach Aria Group and produced many trips of america and Canada with this group. Her single recital tours required her all over the world and, ever a staunch supporter of Canadian composers, she frequently included their tunes on her applications. The main of the functions she championed was Fleming’s The Confession Rock. Although her orchestral repertoire ranged from Bach and Pergolesi to Elgar and Casals, it had been as an interpreter of Mahler that Forrester is most beneficial remembered, especially for the next Symphony and Das Lied von der Erde. Maureen Forrester’s tone of voice was a dark, wealthy contralto, but with an simplicity in the top register which allowed her to sing some mezzo-soprano parts like the Verdi Requiem and Brangäne in Wagner’s Tristan and Isolde. Although a big voice, it had been very versatile which produced a demand on her behalf within the oratorios of Bach and Handel, and also other Baroque composers, which she sang all around the globe. In the 1960s and 1970s, she averaged around 120 shows annually, while increasing five kids. Forrester loved teaching, and from 1966 until 1971, she going the voice division in the Philadelphia Academy of Music. After departing the Academy of Music, she continuing to instruct privately in Toronto also to provide master classes together with her recitals. In 1983, she started a five-year term mainly because chairman from the Canada Council for the Arts. She released her autobiography, From Personality, in 1986, exactly the same 12 months she was called a Companion from the Purchase of Canada. Maureen Forrester continued to be among the great contraltos from the twentieth hundred years throughout her lengthy performing profession.

Quick Facts

Date Of Birth July 25, 1930
Died June 16, 2010, Toronto, Canada
Profession Voice Actor, Opera Singer
Nationality Canadian
Spouse Eugene Kash
Children Linda Kash, Daniel Kash, Gina Kash, Paula Kash, Susan Kash
Parents Thomas Forrester, May Arnold
Awards Canadian Music Hall of Fame
Music Songs Symphonie No.9 op.125: Presto - "O Freunde, nicht diese Töne!" - Allegro assai, Das Lied von der Erde: II. "Der Einsame im Herbst", Lauda per la natività del signore, Cantata No. 54, BWV 54: Widerstehe doch der Sund, Samson, HWV: Return O God of Hosts, Passion According to St. Matthew, BWV: Erbarne dich, Cantata No. 169, BWV 169: Stirb in mir, Christmas Oratorio: Bereite dich, Zion, Zigeunerlieder, Op. 103: IV. Lieber Gott, du weißt, Das Lied von der Erde: VI. "Der Abschied", You'll Never Walk Alone, Lieder Nach Gedichten Von Eduard Morike: No. 46: "Gesang Weylas", Ruhe, Meine Seele, Op. 27, No. 1, 5 Gedichte, Op. 19: IV. Der Schmied, Songs of Sunset: A song of the setting sun!, VII. Kommt dir manchmal in den Sinn, IV. Lieber Gott, du weisst, I Never Saw Another Butterfly: V. The Narrative, II. Hochgeturmte Rimaflut, VIII. Rote Abendwolken ziehn, Cradle Song, I Never Saw Another Butterfly: III. The Little Mouse, I Never Saw Another Butterfly: VI. The Butterfly, Nur wer die Sehnsucht kennt, III. O Tod, o Tod wie bitter bist du, Messiah, HWV: He was despised, A Real Nice Clambake, Das Lied von der Erde: Von der Schönheit, June Is Bustin Out All Over, Songs of Sunset, Two Songs for Alto, Viola and Piano,, Op. 91, No. 2: "Geistliches Wiegenlied", Mahler: Symphony No.3 in D minor - Part 2 - 6. Langsam. Ruhevoll. Empfunden
Albums Handel: Serse, Symphony No. 2 Resurrection, Mahler: Symphony No. 2 in C Minor - "Resurrection", Das Lied von der Erde, Brahms / Wagner: Lieder, Mahler: Symphony No. 2 - "Resurrection", Masterpieces Presents Gustav Mahler: The Song of the Earth (Das Lied von der Erde), Julius Caesar, The Stratford Ensemble, Le lied (Mono Version), Des Knaben Wunderhorn, Mahler The Song of the Heart, Symphony No. 9 in D minor, op. 125, Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde, Maureen Forrester - A Brahms-Schumann Recital, The Artistry Of Maureen Forrester (Digitally Remastered), Porträt Maureen Forrester, Forrester, Maureen: Handel Arias From Oratorios and Operas, Mahler: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 3, Singer Portrait - Maureen Forrester, Vol. 2, Mahler, Obras Escogidas, Frère André, un homme de prière: musique pour la réflexion et la méditation, Maureen Forrester Sings Bach and Handel, Expressive and loveable lieder, Classical Music Masterpieces, Vol. X, Singer Portrait - Maureen Forrester, Vol. 1
Nominations Juno Award for Classical Album of the Year – Solo or Chamber Ensemble
Movies The Art of Igor Markevitch, Wagner: Tristan und Isolde: Montreal Symphony Orchestra, Menotti: The Medium: Maureen Forrester, Iolanthe: Gilbert & Sullivan: Stratford Festival

  • Facts
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1 She is the Head of the Voice Department at the Philadelphia Academy of Music in Pennsylvania. [June 2007]
2 Her father was a Scottish cabinet-maker; her mother was Irish.
3 As a teenager, she left school and worked as a secretary and a telephone operator, saving money for voice lessons.
4 She received the nickname "Big Mo" while playing on her neighborhood basketball team.
5 She made her professional debut at 21, with the Montreal Elgar Choir.
6 She was awarded the C.C. (Companion of the Order of Canada)on July 6, 1967 for her services to music.
7 Mother of actress Linda Kash and actor Daniel Kash



The Adventures of Tintin 1991-1992 TV Series Bianca Castafiore
Street Legal 1991 TV Series Janet Fontaine
Iolanthe 1984 TV Movie Queen of the Fairies / The Diva
The Medium 1977 TV Movie Madame Flora
NET Opera Theater 1970 TV Series Witch
Selections from the Christmas Oratorio by J.S. Bach 1964 Short Contralto



Les passagers 1999 performer: "Cantate no 170"
Alien: Resurrection 1997 performer: "Julius, Priva son d'ogni conforto"



Life and Times 2000 TV Series documentary Herself
Singing: A Joy in Any Language 1983 Herself
Musicanada 1975 Documentary
Festival in Puerto Rico 1961 Short documentary Herself
Preview: Beethoven's Ninth Symphony 1958 TV Movie Herself (contralto)

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