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Enid Hartle was born in Sheffield in 1935 and studied singing first at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and after with Vera Rozsa, with whom she had a long and fruitful relationship.

Operatic Career

Enid Hartle began her singing career in the chorus of Glyndebourne Festival Operamarker in 1968 and the following year made her debut on the Glyndebourne Tour, singing Filipyevna in Eugene Onegin by Tchaikovsky. This role was to take her to, among other places, Toronto, Amsterdam, and The Royal Opera House. She also took part in the Decca recording of Eugene Onegin, under the direction of George Solti.

She was a lyric character mezzo-soprano and was employed by Glyndebourne both in the main season and on the tour for many years, where her roles included:• Baba the Turk in The Rake’s Progress – Stravinsky,• Third Lady in The Magic Flute - Mozart,• The Fortune Teller in Arabella – Strauss.• Florence in Albert Herring – Benjamin Britten.

She created the role of Miss Read in Winter Cruise by Heineman which won her great praise from the Dutch press.

When not at Glyndebourne or abroad Enid sang with Kent Opera, a flourishing innovative Opera Company at that time, where her roles included:• Buttercup in H.M.S. Pinafore – Gilbert and Sullivan,• Arnalta in The Coronation of Poppea – Monteverdi, directed by Norman Platt, founder and Artistic Director of the company,• Maddalena in Rigoletto – Verdi,• Mistress Quickly in Falstaff – Verdi, both of these Verdi operas directed by Jonathan Miller,• The Nurse in The Return of Ulysses - Monteverdi• Nurse in King Priam – Tippett, directed by Nicholas Hytner,• Auntie in Peter Grimes – Britten,• Madam Chin in A Night at the Chinese OperaJudith Weir’s first opera.

Many of these operas were conducted by Roger Norrington.

Enid’s perceptive, sensitive interpretation of these roles, infused by her great love of music and language, breathed through them, as she made the characters real. She was a keen observer of and commentator on life, and her humour and enormous sense of the ridiculous brought previously unthought-of dimensions to these roles!

Concerts and Recordings

Although primarily a stage creature, Enid Hartle also sang with many of the leading orchestras at home and abroad, with whom she performed a wide range of works from Handel’s Messiah to Berlioz ’ Nuits d’Été and Schönberg’s Perrot Lunaire.Other recordings include:• Ariadne auf Naxos – Strauss with the late George Solti• Suor Angelica – Puccini with Richard Bonynge• La Calisto – Montiverdi realized and conducted by Raymond Leppard

She died on December 1st 2008.


This biography was compiled based on material prepared by Enid's friends, Linda Gray and Sarah Walker

External Sources

Enid Hartle: The Singer, The Friend, The Teacher -

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