Deon van der Walt


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(b Cape Town, 28 July 1958; d Paarl, 29 Nov 2005). South African tenor. He studied singing at the University of Stellenbosch, and made his operatic début as Jaquino in 1981 in Cape Town. From 1982 he was attached to a number of opera houses in Europe, principally in Stuttgart and Zürich, where he sang Tonio in La fille du régiment (1989). He made his début at Covent Garden in 1985 as Almaviva and at the Vienna Staatsoper in 1989 as Tamino, singing Belmonte at Salzburg the same year. The lyric quality of his voice made him an ideal interpreter of the works of composers such as Gaetano Donizetti, W. A. Mozart and Gioachino Rossini. Although concentrating at first on lighter roles, he had more recently taken on more dramatic roles by Jules Massenet, Giuseppe Verdi, Giacomo Puccini and others. His most significant recordings include Così fan tutte and Fidelio (under Nikolaus Harnoncourt), Meistersinger (as David; Wolfgang Sawallisch) and many lieder recitals.

From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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