April 19, 2004 by

Peter Elvins


Categories: Education, Musicians

Peter Elvins, a world-renowned opera singer, died on April 8 from esophageal cancer. He was 70.
As a child growing up in St. Louis, Elvins developed a passion for opera. At 15, he landed a chorister position with the prestigious Chautauqua Opera Company in New York. Elvins graduated with an English degree from Harvard University in 1955. He enlisted in the military and was one of the original members of the U.S. Army Chorus.
In 1957, Elvins married opera singer and voice teacher Anna Gabrieli, and became a professional performer. After appearing in lead roles in Spain, Austria, Germany, Italy and Belgium, Elvins and his wife moved back to the United States. He sang in New York, San Francisco and Connecticut productions, and spent nine years as a regular cast member with the Boston Lyric Opera.
When he wasn’t sharing his elegant, low bass with audiences, Elvins taught voice lessons and courses in opera. He also wrote opera news and reviews for La Scala, the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Italian magazine.

3 Responses to Peter Elvins

  1. Mark Jackson

    Peter Elvins gave me inspiration and a love for opera and the voice. His passion for this special and difficult art form was a gift I am still apprecaiting to this day. I use in my own teaching and performing the very fundamentals he instilled in me when I studied with him so many years ago. He let me see that music, voice and opera is a wonderful career and a way of life. I am indebted to him for these lessons.
    Peter was a great man. Thank you Peter. Mark

  2. Tony Angel

    Finding this entry by accident came as a great shock to me. I knew Peter and his family in Germany but lost touch with them. I saw his performance in a number of Operas and Musicals at the Osnabruck Opera House. A little known fact is that he and his wife sang on a record made by a British Army Band.

  3. Jim Lespasio

    I’m sorry it took so long to pay tribute to Peter for everything he taught me. As a 45 year old novice with no real training, he put me through some rigorous training and gave me the confidence I needed to stand up on stage and give my all. I’ll never forget you,sir.

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