Opera Scotland

Arthur Hammond Suggest updates

Born Sheffield, 4 December 1904.

Died London, 12 November 1991.

English conductor and musicologist.

Arthur Hammond trained as a civil engineer before switching to music. In 1925 he joined BNOC as a coach on the recommendation of Beecham. He spent the 1926-7 season in Ireland with the Bowyer-Westwood company. On returning to Britain, he joined Carl Rosa, making his conducting debut at Glasgow Theatre Royal on 9 March 1928. He toured the USA as assistant to Albert Coates before joining Covent Garden in 1936.

He was musical director of Carl Rosa during its final decade from 1948 to 1960. During this period he prepared performing editions of Benvenuto Cellini, Tales of Hoffmann and Carmen. He worked with Israeli Opera from 1963-5, at a time whenn Plácido Domingo was a member of the company, and Hammond coached him in several parts, including Samson. On his return to Britain, he worked as a music consultant at Covent Garden until his retirement in 1988. His students included Janice Cairns.

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