Ulfung, Ragnar (Sigurd), Norwegian tenor and opera director; b. Oslo, Feb. 28,1927. He studied at the Oslo Cons, and in Milan. In 1949 he launched his career singing in concerts. In 1952 he made his stage debut as Magadoff in Menottes The Consulin Stockholm, and then sang in Bergen and Göteborg. In 1958 he became a member of the Royal Opera in Stockholm, where he created the role of the Deaf Mute in Blomdahl’s Aniarain 1959. In 1959 he also made his British debut as Verdi’s Gustavus III with the visiting Royal Opera of Stockholm at the Edinburgh Festival, and returned with it in 1960 in the same role at London’s Covent Garden. In 1963 he returned to Covent Garden as Don Carlos. He made his U.S. debut in Santa Fe in 1966, and then appeared at the San Francisco Opera in 1967. In 1969 he sang at the Hamburg State Opera. In 1971 he appeared at the Chicago Lyric Opera. He created the title role in Maxwell Davies’s Tavernerat Covent Garden in 1972, and also made his first appearance at Milan’s La Scala. On Dec. 12,1972, he made his Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y. as Mime in Siegfried,and then returned there for occasional appearances in subsequent years in such roles as Mime, Loge, Herod, Berg’s Captain, and Weill’s Fatty. In 1973 he made his bow as an opera director with La Bohèmein Santa Fe, and thereafter directed works there and in Stockholm and Seattle. During the 1974-76 seasons, he sang Mime in the Ringcycle at Covent Garden. In 1986 he appeared as Herod in San Francisco. He created the role of Jadidja in Die schwarze Maskeat its U.S. premiere in Santa Fe in 1988. In 1989 he sang Strauss’s Aegisthus in London. In 1990 he appeared as Puccini’s Goro in Lyons.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire