Josephine Veasey (Mezzo-Soprano)
Born: 10th July 1930, London, England
Josephine Veasey was born in Peckham in 1930 and joined the chorus of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden at 19. Her first solo role there came six years later, when she sang the Page in Strauss’s Salome (which she later recorded under Sir Georg Solti, one of her great champions); she went onto sing major roles at Covent Garden including Amneris, Eboli and Carmen, and also became a favourite at Glyndebourne where engagements including Octavian and Charlotte.
Veasey was particularly renowned in Wagner and Berlioz; her discography includes Marguerite on a Grammy-winning recording of La damnation de Faust, Didon in Les troyens, and Béatrice in Béatrice et Bénédict (all under Sir Colin Davis), Fricka on Herbert von Karan’s Ring Cycle (‘Veasey as Fricka conveys the biting intensity of the part – Penguin Guide), and Dorabella in Solti’s [Così fan tutte.
Veasey retired in 1982; her final operatic appearance was as Herodias in Salome[ at Covent Garden.