Urlus, Jacques


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(b Hergenrath, 9 Jan 1867; d Noordwijk aan Zee, 6 June 1935). Dutch tenor. He studied at The Hague Conservatory, with Cornelie van Zanten and others in Amsterdam, and made his operatic début in Utrecht in 1894 as Beppe (Pagliacci). He sang with the Netherlands National Opera, 1894–9, then in Leipzig, 1900–14. One by one he mastered the leading Wagnerian parts, for which his robust yet sensitive singing and declamatory gifts well fitted him. He made his London début at Covent Garden in spring 1910 as Tristan during the Thomas Beecham opera season. In 1911 he was called to Bayreuth, where his first part was Siegmund. He sang regularly at the Metropolitan Opera, 1913–17, becoming its foremost Wagnerian tenor. From 1917 onwards he accepted no fixed engagements, but settled in the Netherlands and toured extensively in Europe and the USA. He was also an excellent concert singer. His many recordings, 1903–24, chronicle every facet of his career and confirm his fine-grained voice and innate sense of style. He published an autobiography, Mijn loopbaan (‘My career’; Amsterdam, 1930).

From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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