Haefliger, Ernst, noted Swiss tenor; b. Davos, July 6, 1919. He studied at the Zürich Cons., with Fernando Carpi in Geneva, and with Julius Patzak in Vienna. After making his debut as the Evangelist in Bach’s St. John Passion in 1942, he sang at the Zürich Opera (1943–52). He gained wide recognition when he created the role of Tiresias in OrfFs Antigonae at the Salzburg Festival on Aug. 9, 1949. From 1952 to 1974 he was a member of the Berlin Städtische (later Deutsche) Oper, but he also appeared as a guest artist with many of the principal European opera houses. His roles in Mozart’s operas were particularly esteemed. He pursued a distinguished career as a concert singer and lieder artist. His appearances as the Evangelist in Bach’s passions and his lieder recitals were notable. In commemoration of the 250th anniversary of Bach’s death in 2000, Haefliger was engaged as the Evangelist in the St. Matthew Passion in Winterthur. He was a prof, at the Munich Hochschule für Musik from 1971 to 1981. Haefliger publ, the book Die Singstimme (Bern, 1983).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire