“Sing we for Pleasure - for One and All”
Wendy Eathorne was born in the small tin mining village of Four Lanes near Redruth in Cornwall. She went to school at Helston Grammar School and still maintains strong links with the county, being a Cornish Bard, as well as President of her home village Four Lanes Male Voice Choir and a Trustee of The Hall for Cornwall in Truro.
Immediately after her studies at The Royal Academy of Music in London, where her teachers included May Blyth, Flora Nielsen, Bruce Boyce, Gwen Catley and Dame Eva Turner, she went into the West End Musical Robert and Elizabeth by Ron Grainer. She was a prize winner in the International Vocalist Concours in Holland in 1975 and also won the Gulbenkian Foundation Award in 1976. She then sang at Glyndebourne Festival Opera as Atalanta in Nicholas Maw’s The Rising of the Moon, First Boy in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, and Sophie in Massenet’s Werther. Later for English National Opera she sang Oscar in Verdi’s The Masked Ball, Papagena in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, The Princess in Prokofiev’s Love for Three Oranges, Zerlina in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Cupid in Handel’s Semele, and Daniel in Handel’s Susanah. For the Handel Opera Society she sang roles in Jeptha, Ottone and Atalanta.
She became one of the busiest sopranos on the books of the agents Ibbs & Tillett, singing throughout Europe and Canada in contemporary works and first performances by such composers as Tjeknavorian, Berkeley and McCabe as well as the great oratorios by Bach and Handel. She made many studio and live concert broadcasts, including Promenade Concerts under the direction of such notable conductors as Rattle, Boulez, Haitink, Davies, Horenstein, Boult, Leinsdorf and Pritchard. She has made numerous television appearances including episodes of Face the Music and Star Brass. Her performances for the Huddersfield Choral Society, London Bach Society, The Bach Choir, Royal Choral Society, LSO, RPO, LPO, BBCSO, Halle, CBSO, BSO and ECO are remembered with affection.
From 1989-1994 she was Head of Vocal Studies, Opera and Music Theatre at Trinity College of Music, London, devising and administering the course there. Since 1985 she has been on the teaching staff of the College. She specialises in voice and drama, and is currently a Senior Lecturer and examiner at the college. In 1994 she was awarded the Sir Charles Santley Memorial Prize by the Worshipful Company of Musicians. She is a member of the Royal Society of Musicians, Honorary Fellow of the Cambridge Society of Musicians and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
Interests beyond music include dressmaking, cooking, swimming, gardening and walking. She also enjoys films, the theatre and entertaining friends at home. Since 1988 she has been a Justice of the Peace on the Hounslow Bench in Middlesex.