|Born||Harold David Rosenthal|
|Alma mater||University College London|
|Occupation||Music critic, writer|
Harold David Rosenthal OBE (30 September 1917 – 19 March 1987) was an English music critic, writer, lecturer, and broadcaster about opera. Originally a schoolmaster, he became drawn to music, particularly opera, and began working on musical publications. On the foundation of Opera magazine in London in 1950, Rosenthal was assistant editor, and became editor in 1953, retaining the post until 1986.
Opera is a monthly British magazine devoted to covering all things related to opera. It contains reviews and articles about current opera productions internationally, as well as articles on opera recordings, opera singers, opera companies, opera directors, and opera books. The magazine also contains major features and analysis on individual operas and people associated with opera.
He was a continual campaigner on behalf of opera, and was a strong opponent of its élitist image and inflated seat prices. In the early 1950s he was appointed archivist to the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, which led to his most substantial publication, Two Centuries of Opera at Covent Garden.
The Royal Opera House (ROH) is an opera house and major performing arts venue in Covent Garden, central London. The large building is often referred to as simply "Covent Garden", after a previous use of the site of the opera house's original construction in 1732. It is the home of The Royal Opera, The Royal Ballet, and the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House. Originally called the Theatre Royal, it served primarily as a playhouse for the first hundred years of its history. In 1734, the first ballet was presented. A year later, Handel's first season of operas began. Many of his operas and oratorios were specifically written for Covent Garden and had their premieres there.
Rosenthal was born in West Norwood, London, the son of Israel Victor Rosenthal, a schoolmaster, and his wife, Leah née Samuel. He was educated at the City of London School and University College, London, where he took his BA in 1940, continuing with post-graduate studies at the London Institute of Education. In World War II he served as a private in the British army. In 1944 he married Lillah Phyllis Weiner with whom he had a son and a daughter.
West Norwood is a largely residential area of south London within the London Borough of Lambeth, located 5.4 miles (8.7 km) south south-east of Charing Cross. The centre of West Norwood sits in a bowl surrounded by hillsides on its east, west and south sides. From many parts of the area, distant views can be seen, of places such as the City of London, Canary Wharf and Crystal Palace.
The City of London School, also known as CLS and City, is an independent day school for boys in the City of London, England, on the banks of the River Thames next to the Millennium Bridge, opposite Tate Modern. It is a partner school of the City of London School for Girls and the City of London Freemen's School. All three schools receive funding from the City's Cash. It is a member of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference (HMC).
A Bachelor of Arts is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, sciences, or both. Bachelor of Arts programs generally take three to four years depending on the country, institution, and specific specializations, majors, or minors. The word baccalaureus should not be confused with baccalaureatus, which refers to the one- to two-year postgraduate Bachelor of Arts with Honors degree in some countries.
After the war, Rosenthal became a schoolmaster, teaching history and English from 1946 to 1950.He became increasingly interested in music, appearing frequently as a critic and lecturer, particularly on opera. From 1947 to 1952 he was a correspondent for the American journal Opera News . A fellow enthusiast for opera, Lord Harewood, worked with him on the journal Ballet and Opera in 1948 and 1949. In 1950 Harewood founded the magazine Opera and invited Rosenthal to join him as assistant editor. Rosenthal resigned from his teaching post and devoted himself to music for the rest of his life. When Harewood left to take up work in opera administration, Rosenthal succeeded him as editor, holding the post from 1953 until 1986. In the early years of his editorship he was also archivist to the Royal Opera House (1950–56) which led to his most substantial book, Two Centuries of Opera at Covent Garden (1958). From 1955 to 1960 he was a correspondent for the journal Musical America.
Opera News is an American classical music magazine. It has been published since 1936 by the Metropolitan Opera Guild, a non-profit organization located at Lincoln Center which was founded to engender the appreciation of opera and also support the Metropolitan Opera of New York City. Opera News was initially focused primarily on the Met, particularly providing information for listeners of the Saturday afternoon live Metropolitan Opera radio broadcasts. Over the years, the magazine has broadened its scope to include the larger American and international opera scenes. Currently published monthly, Opera News offers opera related feature articles; artist interviews; production profiles; musicological pieces; music-business reportage; reviews of performances in the United States and Europe; reviews of recordings, videos, books and audio equipment; and listings of opera performances in the U.S.
George Henry Hubert Lascelles, 7th Earl of Harewood,, styled The Hon. George Lascelles before 1929 and Viscount Lascelles between 1929 and 1947, was a British music director and author. He served as director of the Royal Opera House, chairman of the board of the English National Opera (ENO) (1986–95); managing director of the ENO (1972–85), managing director of the English National Opera North (1978–81), governor of the BBC (1985–87), and president of the British Board of Film Classification (1985–96).
Grove's Dictionary of Music said of Rosenthal, "under his guidance [Opera magazine] came to provide an extensive coverage of operatic events throughout the world and exercised considerable influence on operatic life in Britain. … Rosenthal's work is highly regarded for its judiciousness, based on a thorough knowledge of the human voice and the operatic repertory."He was particularly noted for his opposition to the élitist image that resulted in exorbitant prices for opera tickets and for his key role in broadening opera's appeal after World War II. As a reviewer he was known for his generosity, giving the benefit of the doubt to performers, particularly when writing about young singers.
In addition to his writing, Rosenthal was recruited in an administrative capacity in a variety of musical roles. He was a member of the British Arts Council Patrons of Music Fund (1960–70) and chairman of the music section of the Critics' Circle of Great Britain (1965–67). From 1962 he served on the council of the Friends of Covent Garden. He also played an administrative role in international festivals, notably Edinburgh.He was made a cavaliere ufficiale of the Order of Merit of the republic of Italy in 1977, and was awarded the British OBE in 1983.
The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire is a British order of chivalry, rewarding contributions to the arts and sciences, work with charitable and welfare organisations, and public service outside the civil service. It was established on 4 June 1917 by King George V and comprises five classes across both civil and military divisions, the most senior two of which make the recipient either a knight if male or dame if female. There is also the related British Empire Medal, whose recipients are affiliated with, but not members of, the order.
Rosenthal also received an Honorary Doctorate from Heriot-Watt University in 1985
Rosenthal died in London in 1987, aged 69.
Rosenthal's principal books include:
Isidore de Lara, born Isidore Cohen, was an English composer and singer. After studying in Italy and France, he returned to England where he taught for several years at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and became a well known singer and composer of art songs. In the early 1880s he began to compose music for the stage, eventually achieving his greatest successes with opera in Monte Carlo from the late 1890s through the outbreak of World War I. His most popular opera, Messaline (1899), enjoyed frequent revivals throughout Europe and in the United States during the first quarter of the 20th century. He returned to London and spent much of the 1920s trying to create a permanent National opera company in England without much success.
Thomas Augustine Arne was an English composer. He is best known for his patriotic song Rule Britannia, a version of God Save the King, which became the British national anthem, and the song A-Hunting We Will Go. Arne was a leading British theatre composer of the 18th century, working at Drury Lane and Covent Garden.
English National Opera (ENO) is an opera company based in London, resident at the London Coliseum in St Martin's Lane. It is one of the two principal opera companies in London, along with The Royal Opera, Covent Garden. ENO's productions are sung in English.
Rafael Jeroným Kubelík was a Czech-born conductor and composer.
Albert Coates was an English conductor and composer. Born in St. Petersburg where his English father was a successful businessman, he studied in Russia, England and Germany, before beginning his career as a conductor in a series of German opera houses. He was a success in England conducting Wagner at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 1914, and in 1919 was appointed chief conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra.
Sir Geraint Llewellyn Evans was a Welsh bass-baritone noted for operatic roles including Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, and the title roles in Falstaff and Wozzeck. He sang more than 70 different roles in a career that lasted from his first appearance at Covent Garden in 1948 to his farewell there in 1984.
The Royal Opera is a company based in central London, resident at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Along with the English National Opera, it is one of the two principal opera companies in London. Founded in 1946 as the Covent Garden Opera Company, it was known by that title until 1968. It brought a long annual season and consistent management to a house that had previously hosted short seasons under a series of impresarios. Since its inception, it has shared the Royal Opera House with the dance company now known as The Royal Ballet.
Claus Adolf Moser, Baron Moser, was a British statistician who made major contributions in both academia and the Civil Service. He prided himself rather on being a non-mathematical statistician, and said that the thing that frightened him most in his life was when Maurice Kendall asked him to teach a course on analysis of variance at the LSE.
Giorgio Ronconi was an Italian operatic baritone celebrated for his brilliant acting and compelling stage presence. In 1842, he created the title-role in Giuseppe Verdi's Nabucco at La Scala, Milan.
Lyuba Welitsch was an operatic soprano. She was born in Borisovo, Bulgaria, studied in Sofia and Vienna, and sang in opera houses in Austria and Germany in the late 1930s and early and mid-1940s. In 1946 she became an Austrian citizen
Walter Midgley was an English operatic tenor who sang leading roles at the Royal Opera House and elsewhere from the 1930s to the 1950s.
Karl Rankl was a British conductor and composer who was of Austrian birth. A pupil of the composers Schoenberg and Webern, he conducted at opera houses in Austria, Germany and Czechoslovakia until fleeing from the Nazis and taking refuge in England in 1939.
Antonio Giuseppe Anselmi was an Italian operatic tenor. He became famous throughout Europe during the first decade of the 20th century for his stylish performances of lyric roles. He never sang in the United States.
Joseph Hislop was a Scottish lyric tenor who appeared in opera and oratorio and gave concerts around the world. He sang at La Scala, Milan, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London, and the Opéra-Comique, Paris, as well as forging a remarkable career in Denmark and Sweden, where he was made a Knight of the Dannebrog and a Knight of the Order of Vasa. He toured America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand on several occasions and made a large number of recordings, some of which are available on CD re-issues. Hislop is notable for having been the final teacher of the Swedish tenor Jussi Björling and for developing a number of fine British singers through his post-War work at the Guildhall School of Music and at Sadler's Wells. After retiring to Fife, he taught the Scottish baritone Donald Maxwell.
The British National Opera Company presented opera in English in London and on tour in the British provinces between 1922 and 1929. It was founded in December 1921 by singers and instrumentalists from Sir Thomas Beecham's Beecham opera company (1915–1920), which was disbanded when financial problems over buying The Bedford Estate forced Beecham to withdraw from the music scene for a short period. The new venture was financed by the issue of 40,000 preference shares at £1 each. Among the musicians who met at the inaugural meeting of the new enterprise at the Queen's Hall were Sir Alexander Mackenzie, Sir Charles Stanford, Harry Plunket Greene, Aylmer Buesst and Sir Henry Hadow. The new company bought the entire assets of the Beecham company, comprising the scenery, costumes, scores, instruments and performing rights for 48 operas.
The Lodger is an opera in two acts composed by Phyllis Tate. The libretto is by David Franklin, after the 1913 novel of the same name by Marie Adelaide Belloc Lowndes. The opera was commissioned by the Royal Academy of Music, with a grant from the William Manson Fund, and the premiere took place there on 16 July 1960.
Sir John Tooley is a former general director of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London. He has also held a range of appointments in the musical world, serving as a trustee or board member for many organisations.
Emmanuel Christian Hedmondt was a Canadian-born tenor who made a long and distinguished career, mainly within the operatic repertoire. He changed to this stage name from his family name Hausgen. He also used the name Charles Hedmont, although spellings of this vary.