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Richard Bonynge (b1930)


Richard Bonynge, AC, CBE, was born in Sydney and studied piano at the New South Wales Conservatorium of Music and later with Herbert Fryer, a pupil of Busoni, in London. He made his conducting début in Rome in 1962 with the Santa Cecilia Orchestra and has since conducted at most of the world’s opera houses. He was artistic director of Vancouver Opera and musical director of Australian Opera. He was awarded the CBE (Commander of the British Empire) in 1977, made Officer of the Order of Australia in 1983, Companion of the Order of Australia in 2012, Commandeur de l’Ordre National des Arts et des Lettres, Paris, in 1989 and Socio d’onore of the R. Accademia Filarmonica di Bologna in 2007. He married the late soprano Joan Sutherland in 1954. He has recorded over fifty complete operas, made videos and DVDs of many operas and recorded numerous ballets. Richard Bonynge is acknowledged as a scholar of bel canto in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century opera and a devotee of nineteenth-century ballet music. In 2012 he was awarded Australia’s highest honour, Companion of the Order of Australia, recognising his “eminent service to the performing arts as an acclaimed conductor and music scholar”.





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