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Dame Janet Baker

Dame Janet Baker (Mezzo-Soprano)

Born: 21st August 1933, Hatfield, West Riding of Yorkshire, England

Nationality: British

Dame Janet Baker (born August 21, 1933) is an English mezzo-soprano best known as an opera, concert, and lieder singer.

She was particularly closely associated with baroque and early Italian opera and the works of Benjamin Britten. During her career, which spanned the 1950s to the 1980s, she was considered an outstanding singing actress and widely admired for her dramatic intensity, perhaps best represented in her famous portrayal as Dido, the tragic heroine of Berlioz's magnum opus Les Troyens. As a concert performer, Baker was noted for her interpretations of Gustav Mahler and Edward Elgar.

Further Reading: Dame Janet Baker

Interview, Dame Janet Baker

On the great English mezzo's birthday, here's Katherine's exclusive video-interview with her, made shortly before her 80th in 2013.

Recording of the Week, Dame Janet Baker celebrates her eightieth birthday

Curated to mark the great English mezzo's birthday, this 20-disc set from EMI includes classic recordings of music by Berlioz, Elgar, Mahler and Schubert as well as previously-unreleased material including Monteverdi and Scarlatti with Raymond Leppard.

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New Releases: Dame Janet Baker