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Ramon Vinay (1911 - 1996)

The Chilean singer Ramón Vinay (1911-1996) started his career as a baritone, reverted to tenor and then moved back to baritone. Born in Chillán, Chile, he was educated in France before his family moved to Mexico City. Here he studied voice with José Pierson, and made his début as Don Alfonso in Donizetti’s La Favorita. After further study with René Maison, he appeared as a tenor for the first time in 1944, the year in which he also first sang Otello. He made his début with the New York City Center Opera in 1945 and at the Metropolitan Opera during the following year, once again as Otello. His singing of this rôle with Toscanini launched his international career: he went on to appear in both Italian and German repertoire in Bayreuth, Buenos Aires, London, Paris, Salzburg, and Vienna, singing under conductors such as Furtwängler and Beecham. He returned to singing baritone rôles in 1962, and last sang in public in 1974.



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