Shirley-Quirk, John (Stanton)

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Shirley-Quirk, John (Stanton)

Shirley-Quirk, John (Stanton), distinguished English baritone; b. Liverpool, Aug. 28, 1931. He studied voice with Roy Henderson, and at the same time took courses in chemistry and physics at the Univ. of Liverpool. He made his operatic debut as the Doctor in Pelléas et Mélisande at the Glyndebourne Festival (1961); then was a leading member of the English Opera Group (1964–76), where he became well known for his roles in Britten’s operas; created all 7 baritone roles in Britten’s Death in Venice (June 16, 1973). In 1973 he sang at London’s Covent Garden; then made his Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y. as the Traveler in Death in Venice on Oct. 18, 1974. On July 7, 1977, he created the role of Lev in Tippett’s The Ice Break at Covent Garden. He also toured widely as a concert artist. In 1975 he was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire