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Saturday, December 7, 2013

Vale Tom Krause (July 5, 1934 − December 5, 2013)

Tom Krause - Don Giovanni
The great Finnish Bass-Baritone Tom Krause passed away on Thursday sadly.  He was one of the more renowned Don Giovanni's of the Twentieth Century and his dark voice led him to portray some of the other great roles for bass-baritone written by Mozart, Verdi, Rossini and Wagner.  

Krause was also a well known and loved recitalist and fortunately there is plenty of recorded material in both opera and song that he left behind.  During his later years he devoted his time to teaching and held regular masterclasses, some of which you can see excerpts from on Youtube.

For me his greatest achievement was Orestes from Richard Strauss' Elektra.  His recording with Solti remains to this day a benchmark of recorded performance.  I grew up with this and I do remember him being my first Escamillo (the Thomas Schippers set) as well.

Looking at his discography via his website, his voice graces many of my most treasured recordings.  Tom Krause you will be greatly missed but your contribution to opera will long be with us.

Here below is Escamillo's Toast from that recording, a fitting tribute to a great performer and teacher.  In Peace.


                                 



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