Robin Leggate - biography

Robin Leggate's operatic career has spanned many styles from singing most of the Mozart roles in his early years, achieving great success with the roles of Cassio and Narraboth, through some of the 'character' roles ranging in size from Spoletta to Herodes and now adding the roles of Captain Vere, Peter Quint and Von Aschenbach to his repertoire together with the Wagnerian roles of Siegmund, Loge and Parsifal.

He joined the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 1976 and was company principal from then until 2001. Highlights in his early career included Tamino at the Royal Opera House in a new production of Die Zauberflöte conducted by Sir Colin Davis. He also sang Ottavio in Don Giovanni at Covent Garden and most of the Mozart roles with the British regional companies and abroad.

as Cassio in Otello with Segei Leiferkus ROH

He was for many years 'the' Cassio (Otello) at the Royal Opera House (a role he also sang in Hamburg and Munich) and also had many successes as Narraboth (Salome), managing to combine it in performance with the role of second Jew in the celebrated Luc Bondy production in Florence, Paris and London. More recently, he had great success with the role of Herodes in the Spier Festival's production of Salome in South Africa and in 2002 with Welsh National Opera, a performance that was televised for S4C.

As a company member at Covent Garden he sang many roles including Der Maler/Der Neger in Lulu, Raffaele in Stiffelio, conducted by Sir Edward Downes, Cassio with Carlos Kleiber and Placido Domingo, Count Elemer with Kiri Te Kanawa as Arabella, and Dr. Caius in the opening production of Falstaff in the newly refurbished Opera House.

Arabella with Kiri Te Kanawa ROH. Photo Clive Barda

as Count Elemer in Arabella with Kiri Te Kanawa ROH

Recent operatic performances include Captain Vere (Billy Budd) for the Flanders Opera, Washington National Opera and Pittsburgh Opera; Peter Quint for Chicago Opera Theater, for which company he also performed Gustav Von Aschenbach (Death in Venice), Eumete (Ulisse), and Sir Philip Wingrave (Owen Wingrave); The Scribe (Khovanschina) for ENO and La Monnaie; Dr Caius (Falstaff) for The National Opera de Lyon and Washington National Opera; The High Priest (Idomeneo) for The Salzburg Festival, and the opening of the 2005/6 season at La Scala, Milan; Loge (Rheingold) for Washington National Opera; Basilio (Figaro) for the Metropolitan Opera, New York and Basilio (Figaro), The Schoolmaster (Cunning Little Vixen) and Herod (Salome) for Covent Garden.

In concert, he has sung most of the standard repertoire, notably Handel, Mozart and Beethoven. He has also sung Britten’s War Requiem with the Suisse Romande Orchestra, the Leningrad Symphony Orchestra and the Washington Catherdral Choral Society and Elijah at the Maggio Musicale, Florence. Concert performances of opera include Siegmund in Die Walküre with the Eire Symphony Orchestra and with the Belarus Symphony Orchestra, both conducted by Alexander Anissimov and Mime in Rheingold with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment under Sir Simon Rattle.

Von Aschenbach in Death in Venice in Chicago 2004

as Von Aschenbach in Death in Venice in Chicago 2004

Future engagements include Goro (Madama Butterfly) for Covent Garden and Basilio (Figaro) at the Bastille.

Robin is represented by Askonas Holt Ltd.

Download Robin's biography (pdf)


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