William Dazeley

William Dazeley


Representation: General Management


Baritone William Dazeley has appeared in opera houses the world over.   His style and musicianship delights audiences and conductors alike.   His Traveller in ‘Death in Venice’ drew a unanimous critical response.   He has two world premieres to his credit,   Jesus in Birtwistle’s The Last Supper and Hosaka’s Hanjo, and is a busy recitalist with concerts at venues including the Wigmore Hall and the Théâtre du Châtelet.


Full Biography

William Dazeley is a graduate of Jesus College, Cambridge. He studied singing at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he received several notable prizes including the prestigious Gold Medal, the Decca/Kathleen Ferrier Prize and the Richard Tauber Prize and won such competitions as the Royal Overseas League Singing Competition and the Walther Grüner International Lieder Competition.

He has appeared in many of the world’s opera houses, where roles have included Count Cherubin, Marcello La Bohème, Guglielmo Così fan tutte, Anthony Sweeney Todd, Yeletsky Queen of Spades, Mercutio Romeo et Juliette and Figaro Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Royal Opera House, Covent Garden), Count Le Nozze di Figaro, Figaro Il Barbiere di Siviglia, title role Owen Wingrave (Glyndebourne Touring Opera), Figaro Barbiere (Deutsche Staatsoper, Berlin), Count Figaro and title role Don Giovanni (Deutsche Oper Berlin), Dr Faust (Salzburg Festival and Théâtre du Châtelet), Scherasmin Oberon (Théâtre du Châtelet, conducted by Gardiner), Count Figaro (Pittsburgh Opera), Zurga The Pearl Fishers (San Francisco Opera), Ferryman Curlew River (Edinburgh Festival), Papageno The Magic Flute (English National Opera), Count Le Nozze di Figaro (Welsh National Opera), Maximilian Candide (Teatro di San Carlo), Posa in a new production of Don Carlos and Danilo The Merry Widow (Opera North), title role Eugene Onegin (New Zealand Opera), The Brothers in concert with Bochumer Symphoniker, Marcello La Bohème (Hamburg Staatsoper) and Father Hansel und Gretel (Glyndebourne Festival Opera and Garsington Opera). More recently William appeared as Enrico Maria de Rohan (Buxton Festival), Eisenstein Die Fledermaus (Bolshoi), Yeletsky Queen of Spades (Opera North), title role in a new production of Don Giovanni (Opera North), Captain von Trapp The Sound of Music (Châtelet), Harasta Cunning Little Vixen (Glyndebourne Festival), Mr Gedge Albert Herring (Opera North), Usher The Fall of the House Usher (Göttingen Festival) Adès’s Totentanz in Warsaw, a concert of Strauss’s orchestral songs with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra at Bridgewater Hall, Ferryman Curlew River (Opéra de Lyon) and The Fall of the House Usher at Welsh National Opera in which he sang the role L’Ami.

In concert he has sung the title role Szenen aus Goethes Faust, with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Schumann Requiem for Mignon (Gardiner/Monteverdi Orchestra), Mahler Des Knaben Wunderhorn (Herreweghe/Royal Flanders Philharmonic and at the Casa da Musica), Corigliano Dylan Thomas Trilogy (Slatkin/BBC Symphony Orchestra), Christmas Oratorio (Berlin Philharmonic), Mahmoud The Death of Klinghoffer (BBC Symphony Orchestra), Das Paradies und die Peri (San Francisco Symphony), Das Klagende Lied (RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra), Carmina Burana (Orchestre du Capitole, BBC Symphony Orchestra and Sydney Symphony Orchestra), Britten War Requiem (Aspen Festival), L’Enfance du Christ (Davis/London Symphony Orchestra and Bayerische Rundfunk), Brahms Requiem (Gardiner/Monteverdi Choir) and L’Enfance du Christ (Bolton/Mozarteum Orchester Salzburg).

World premières include Jesus in Birtwistle’s The Last Supper (Barenboim/Deutsche Staatsoper), later reprised at the Glyndebourne Festival, and Hosokawa’s Hanjo (Aix-en-Provence Festival and Théâtre de la Monnaie). William has also given recital performances at the Wigmore Hall, the Purcell Room, St George’s Bristol and at the Théâtre du Châtelet, and he is regularly invited to sing at the Cheltenham, Aix-en-Provence and Saintes Festivals with such noted accompanists as Graham Johnson and Iain Burnside.

In 2015 William sings Oedipus in Julian Anderson’s The Thebans for Theater Bonn and returns to the Oxford Lieder Festival for two Schubert programmes. He sings Carmina Burana with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and makes his debut as the Traveller in a new production of Death in Venice for Garsington Opera with Steuart Bedford conducting as he did the first performance of the piece in 1973.

Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to make sure you receive the most up to date version.
Email: Caroline Challis



Der Freischütz at the Royal Festival Hall

June 2nd, 2016

Simon Bailey returns to the role of Caspar

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Clark Rundell in Barcelona

May 27th, 2016

Rundell steps in to conduct 3 performances of Bernstein’s Mass

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A Summer of Opera

May 5th, 2016

Hazard Chase singers in UK’s top summer opera festivals

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Dazeley and Laugharne in Cosi fan Tutte

January 29th, 2016

Opera North revive Tim Albery’s much loved production

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William Dazeley – Sensational reviews for Death in Venice

June 23rd, 2015

Paul Curran’s new production of Britten’s final opera is a hit for Garsington

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Opera North – COSI FAN TUTTE (Feb’16)

“Don Alfonso can be a thankless part – a largely unsympathetic character who goes through a three-hour opera without a proper individual aria. But Dazeley’s Alfonso subtly alters the dynamic of the evening. This Don is not a dusty old pedant, but a still-virile figure whose job is to remind his young companions that he was once in their shoes as one day they will be in his”
The Guardian, Alfred Hickling (4 Feb’16)

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Garsington Festival – DEATH IN VENICE (June 2015)

“William Dazeley (as the Traveller, etc.) donned his seven alter-egos with chameleon-like changeability, and sang his music in a lyric baritone that has darkened impressively in recent years.”
Opera, Hugh Canning, September 2015

“Today his (Steuart Bedford) interpretation is perfectly measured,  catching all the score’s febrile anxiety as well as its brief arcs of glowing lyricism and it’s brilliantly characterised vignettes of the Venetian scene.  The latter was populated here by a host of young singers,  all of whom made their mark as Britten intended, and presided over by William Dazeley, splendidly sinister and incisive in a variety of guises and personae.”
Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, June 22 2015

“Most of the secondary characters are conflated into a single multiple role,  played here by William Dazeley.  Excellent casting again,  as Dazeley has both a fine baritone (the pick of the voices) and the acting ability to transform instantly from one character to the next.  The sheer dramatic conviction of his production is one of it’s defining qualities,  for which Dazeley deserves much of the credit”

“Next to Nilon in centrality are the seven baritone roles undertaken by one singer – those of the characters such as the Traveller,  the Elderly Fop,  the Hotel Manager,  the Hotel Barber and others,  who seem to be leading Aschebach towards his own death.  William Dazeley personifies these perfectly,  singing each one with distinction and managing with alacrity the quick changes necessary between them”
George Hall, The Stage, 22 June 2015

“William Dazeley’s handsomely-phrasing baritone has a dark colour right for the harbinger of death.  This is a bass-baritone role written for the superlative John Shirley-Quirk – and he brings the right sinister quality to the falsettos of the creepy fop, hotel barber and leader of the travelling players.”
David Nice, The Arts Desk, 22 June 2015

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Chelsea Opera Group – LE ROI DE LAHORE

“William Dazeley ably took the role of the slippery minister, Scindia … it is very beautifully coloured and shaped.”
Mark Pullinger, bachtrack, 2 March 2015

“COG’s cast was a strong one … William Dazeley’s focused baritone helped him define a suitably villainous Scindia.”
George Hall, The Guardian, 2 March 2015

“William Dazeley was an excellent Scindia who cleverly utilised his baritone voice to demonstrate malevolence alongside a degree of desperation.”
Sam Smith, musicOMH, 1 March 2015


“The performance really took flight with the emergence of William Dazeley as Carl Gustav – demonstrating that his virile Baritone is developing in a way that should lead to his assuming some of the heavier Verdi roles … He uses text well and his duet with Cristina created the most exciting section of the evening”
Alexander Campbell, Classical Source, November 2014

Buxton Festival – MARIA DI ROHAN (July 2011)

“It’s ultimately the men, more sharply drawn, who give the work its force. John Bellemer is the easy-voiced, charismatic Chalais, though it’s William Dazeley’s elegant, violent Chevreuse who steals the show.”
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 10 July 2011

Opera North – DON CARLOS – May 2009

“baritone William Dazeley exudes such powerful charisma as Marquis of Posa that the production seems to lose its sense of purpose after his demise”
The Guardian, 23 May 2009

“William Dazeley’s Rodrigo has style and substance”
Financial Times, 5 May 2009

“As this line-up shows, Opera North has flair…A lyrical, sympathetic William Dazeley shone as Posa.”
The Observer, 10 May 2009

Opera North – LET ‘EM EAT CAKE

“William Dazeley and Bibi Heal make a visually charismatic and vocally accomplished first couple”
The Guardian, 31 January 2009

“William Dazeley, his baritone as focused and robust as his presedential ego”
The Times, 2 February 2009

Opera North – OF THEE I SING

“Moving from the manipulative candidate to the lovelorn Wintergreen, William Dazeley is vocally ideal”
Yorkshire Post, 10 October 2008

“William Dazeley leads the cast with charisma as Wintergreen, doing an all-round good job of singing, dancing and acting.”
www.Musicalcriticism.com, 7 November 2008

“Dazeley is perfect as all-American President John P Wintergreen””
www.metro.co.uk, 9 October 2008

“William Dazeley deploys sufficient matinee-idol charm as the leading man.”
The Guardian, 7 October  2008

“Strong performances from William Dazeley as the wide-eyed Wintergreen.”
www.thestage.co.uk, 6 October 2008

“Suave turns from William Dazeley’s President”
The Observer, 26 October 2008

“Several members of the cast have returned from Opera North’s 1998 production, notably the assured William Dazeley as Wintergreen”
The Daily Telegraph, 8 October 2008

Scottish Opera – FALSTAFF (Ford)

“Above all, this was an ensemble performance of the sort Verdi intended, where no voice stood out over another – yet with Maria Costanza Nocentini as Alice, Leah-Marian Jones as Meg Page, Lucy Crowe as Nannetta, William Dazeley as Ford and Sally Burgess as Mistress Quickly it was full of fine touches, bound together by Peter Robinson’s vivacious, light-footed conducting.”
The Herald, 19 May 2008

“And a special word must be said for William Dazeley as Ford. In his scene of jealousy in Act II, he generated a moment of tragic drama, the only one in the opera, singing with a real beauty of tone and gravity of manner.”
The Independent, 16 May 2008

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Discography & Repertoire

A recital of 27 songs from Parry’s English Lyrics featuring William Dazeley, Susan Bickley and Ailish Tynan accompanied by Iain Burnside.



Cast includes William Dazeley (Rodrigo), Alastair Miles, Julian Gavin, Janice Watson and John Tomlinson.  Conducted by Richard Farnes with the Orchestra and Chorus of Opera North.

CHANDOS Opera in English (2009)


Cast includes William Dazeley, Yann Beuron, Karen Cargill and Peter Rose.  Conducted by Sir Colin Davis with the London Symphony Orchestra.

LSO live (2007)

Artist Manager

Sue Nicholls (Cambridge)
01223 706023

Assistant Artist Manager

Caroline Challis (Cambridge)
01223 706414