Opera Scotland

Constance Willis Suggest updates

Born 1894.

Died 1940.

English contralto.

Constance Willis was one of the leading British mezzos of the inter-war period. She also worked as a straight actress, including several performances of Shakespeare. In opera, she was particularly noted for her interpretations of dramatic mezzo roles such as Ortrud and Carmen. and sang with Carl Rosa, BNOC, Sadler's Wells and Covent Garden.

She created Aunt Jane in Hugh the Drover (Vaughan Williams 1924). At the opening season of Glyndebourne in 1934 she sang (and recorded) Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro.

Roles in Scotland

Lazarillo a poor apprentice
Maritana 1918
Antonia's mother a spirit voice
Tales of Hoffmann 1918
Marcellina Bartolo's housekeeper
Nozze di Figaro 1918
Nozze di Figaro 1927
Frédéric a young nobleman
Mignon 1920
Suzuki Cio-Cio-San's servant
Madam Butterfly 1920
Madam Butterfly 1921
Madam Butterfly 1938
Cherubino the Count's page
Nozze di Figaro 1920
Nicklausse Hoffmann's friend
Tales of Hoffmann 1920
Tales of Hoffmann 1921
Carmen a gypsy
Carmen 1920
Carmen 1925
Carmen 1936
Angel of Death
Angelus 1921
Azucena a Biscayan gypsy woman
Trovatore 1921
Brangäne Isolde's attendant
Tristan und Isolde 1926
Maddalena sister of Sparafucile
Rigoletto 1926
Zita a cousin of Buoso, aged sixty
Gianni Schicchi 1926
Gianni Schicchi 1927
Hansel and Gretel 1926
Quickly Mistress Quickly, a confidante of Alice and Meg
Falstaff 1927
Magdalene Eva's nurse
Mastersingers of Nuremberg 1927
Fricka Wotan's estranged wife
Valkyrie 1927
Amneris daughter of the King of Egypt
Aïda 1927
First Norn
Götterdämmerung 1927
Waltraute a Valkyrie, Brünnhilde's sister
Götterdämmerung 1927
Meg Mistress Page
Falstaff 1929
Ortrud Friedrich's wife
Lohengrin 1929
Erda mother of the Norns and Valkyries
Siegfried 1936
Mrs Peachum
Beggar's Opera 1940

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