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An obituary for Veasey, who died last month aged 91.


She had proclaimed Georg Solti her “musical father”; as music director of Covent Garden from 1961 he was quick to recognise Veasey’s potential. “He was absolutely magnificent for me,” she recalled. “He inspired me to work.”

Solti cast her in her first Verdi role, Preziosilla, in a much-criticised production of La Forza del Destino. She followed up with appearances as Amneris, Iphigenia (in Gluck’s Iphigénie en Tauride), Dido, Eboli and Herodias. Solti pushed Veasey to tackle roles she thought beyond her remit, such as the weightier Wagnerian parts of Brang, Waltraute and, most notably, Fricka.



In Ernest Ansermet’s recording of Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande (1964) she took the role of Geneviève. Other recordings included comparatively rare ventures into bel canto, such as Agnese in Bellini’s Beatrice di Tenda alongside Joan Sutherland and Luciano Pavarotti, and Adalgisa in the same composer’s Norma at the Théâtre d’Antique, Orange, in the south of France, alongside Montserrat Caballé and Jon Vickers.


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