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Russell Oberlin (Counter-tenor)

Born: October 11, 1928 - Akron, Ohio, USA

The Amrican counter-tenor, Russell (Keys) Oberlin, studied at the Juilliard School of Music in New York from 1948, graduating in 1951.

In 1952 Russell Oberlin was a founding member of the legendary New York Pro Musica Antiqua, appearing as a solists in works from Medieval and Renaissance periods. In 1960 he sang the role of Oberon in the permiere of Benjamin Brittenís Midsummer Nightís Dream at Covent Garden London. He sang a large variety of music, with emphasis on early music, his range is probably much higher than the required alto. He has recorded extensively, given recitals, and appeared as soloist with leading orchcstras throughout this country and abroad.

When only 36, Russell Oberlin retired from active singing and became a teacher. In 1966 he joined the faculty at Hunter College in New York as Professor of Music up to 1994. A senior Fullbright research scholar, Oberlin has taught and lectured extensively in the USA and England. In October 1995, Oberlin appeared before a packed house at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, for a memorable onstage interview with music critic Tim Page, featuring filmed and recorded highlights of the singers career.

Since the reissue of his landmark 'Experience Anonymes' recordings on the Lyrichord Early Music Series, Russell Oberlin has appeared on numerous radio programs including Performance Today, Millenium of Music and other programs in interviews about his life and work in music.

Source: Bakerís Biographical Dictionary of 20th Century Classical Musicians (1997); Goldberg Website
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (June 2001)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Leonard Bernstein


BWV 243 [1st]

Glenn Gould


BWV 54

Robert Shaw



Links to other Sites

Russell Oberlin - A discography
Russell Oberlin Interview (Lyrichord)
Lyrichord Early Music - Artists
The Male Soprano Page: Russell Oberlin

Current Biography Yearbook (1960): Russell Oberlin
Russell Oberlin, biography, discography (Goldberg)
Members: Russell Oberlin (Voice Teachers Academy)
Russell Oberlin, A Discography (Voice Teachers Academy)

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Last update: żFebruary 24, 2012 ż23:22:41