Opera Scotland

Doris Woodall Suggest updates

Born c1880.

Died Iver, Bucks., February 1954.

English contralto.

Doris Woodall had a long and successful career as a dramatic contralto, singing both in concert and opera. She trained in Germany, and one of her first professional engagements was in Russia, where she gave her first performance as Carmen, a role she would sing more than a thousand times during her career.

She joined the Carl Rosa company in 1905, and worked regularly with them for the next quarter-century. She also appeared with other companies, including Denhof and O'Mara. Her repertoire included Dalila, Amneris, Azucena and Ortrud. With Carl Rosa in 1910 she sang the title role in the British premiere of The Queen of Sheba by Goldmark.

Perhaps the highlight of her concert career came in 1914, when she took part in the first performance in Britain of Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde, conducted by Sir Henry Wood. In 1922, while continuing to sing leading roles, she became artistic supervisor of the Carl Rosa company, with overall responsibility for the dramatic presentation of all the works in the programme. Perhaps she was the first woman to hold such an influential position in a major company, at least in Britain.

Roles in Scotland

Mrs Page Frau Reich, wife of Page, Anne's mother
Lustigen Weiber von Windsor 1907
Lustigen Weiber von Windsor 1920
Azucena a Biscayan gypsy woman
Trovatore 1907
Trovatore 1920
Trovatore 1922
Trovatore 1923
Klytämnestra widow of Agamemnon
Elektra 1912
Carmen a gypsy
Carmen 1915
Carmen 1916
Carmen 1922
Carmen 1923
Fricka Wotan's estranged wife
Valkyrie 1921
Valkyrie 1922
Ortrud Friedrich's wife
Lohengrin 1921
Lohengrin 1922
Lohengrin 1923
Amneris daughter of the King of Egypt
Aïda 1921
Aïda 1923
Maddalena sister of Sparafucile
Rigoletto 1922
Dalila a Philistine priestess
Samson and Delilah 1922
Samson and Delilah 1923
Cherubino the Count's page
Nozze di Figaro 1923
Mignon stolen in childhood
Mignon 1923

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