Opera Scotland

Victor Godfrey Suggest updates

Born Deloriane, Manitoba, 10 September 1934.

Died Meerbusch, Düsseldorf, 25 September 2012.

Canadian bass-baritone.

Victor Godfrey had a successful career in a variety of styles, including leading Wagnerian roles. He began working at Covent Garden, but was, for most of his career, based on the continent.

He studied initially in Winnipeg, then at the National School of Opera in London (1957-9), before spending a year under the guidance of Hans Hotter in Munich. He made his Covent Garden debut in 1960 as the Doctor in Macbeth, working there regularly in principal bass roles until he moved to the continent in 1968. He was on the roster of the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf until 1971, also appearing in Hanover and Berlin. Italian appearances included Florence and Naples. He worked in Amsterdam and Berlin, also with Scottish Opera in Edinburgh and Glasgow.

He created roles in two important British operas: Hector in King Priam (Covent Garden Opera at Coventry in 1962, and several revivals), and Abednego in Britten's Burning Fiery Furnace (Aldeburgh 1966).

Roles in Scotland

Scythian
Iphigenia in Tauris 1961
Bonze a priest, Cio-Cio-San's uncle
Madam Butterfly 1965
Fasolt a giant
Rheingold 1967
Varlaam an itinerant monk
Boris Godunov 1968
Gunther a Gibichung
Götterdämmerung 1968
Wotan leader of the gods
Rheingold 1971
Wanderer Wotan in disguise
Siegfried 1971

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