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June 2022 Obituaries

Our summary of those the
classical music world has lost this month


Here are brief details of some of the people lost to the classical music world during June 2022. May they rest in peace.

Czech choral conductor and teacher Blanka Kulínská died in Prague on 29 June. Born in Chlaponice as Blanka Bicanová on 11 January 1935, she began singing in the Children's Choir of the Czechoslovak Radio in 1945 and later became the leading chorister and conductor. She took part in foreign tours and important concerts. In 1973, for political reasons, her family founded their own choir, Bambini di Praga, and most members of the original radio choir moved to this new group. In 1992 she became principal choirmaster of the Czech Radio Children's Choir and passed Bambini di Praga over to her son, Bohumil Kulínský Jr, who was later accused of the sexual abuse of choir girls in 2004. This had a negative effect on Blanka Kulínská's subsequent life.

Austrian tenor Kurt Equiluz passed away on 20 June, aged ninety-three. Born in Vienna on 13 June 1929, he sang for Vienna State Opera (1957-1983) and regularly at the Salzburg Festival, where he took part in the first production of Penelope by Rolf Liebermann. His many J S Bach recordings include the Evangelist on the 1965 first period instrument recording of the St John Passion with Concentus Musicus Wien and Nikolaus Harnoncourt. He also starred in various Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra opera films, including Karajan's Der Rosenkavalier (1961) and Carmen (1969), and in Ariadne auf Naxos (1978) conducted by Karl Böhm.

Kurt Equiluz (1929-2022)
Kurt Equiluz (1929-2022)

Romanian soprano Iulia Buciuceanu died in Bucharest on 18 June 2022, aged ninety. Born at Tighina on 25 June 1931 into a family of musicians, she studied at the conservatories in Iaşi and then Bucharest. During her career she toured Belgium, Bulgaria, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Mongolia, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Turkey and Yugoslavia, and sang nine consecutive seasons at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow.

Iulia Buciuceanu (1931-2022)
Iulia Buciuceanu (1931-2022)

Dominican soprano, theatre manager, singing teacher and speech therapist Ivonne Haza passed away on 16 June, aged eighty-three. Born in Angelina on 25 December 1938, she studied at the Conservatory in Santo Domingo and enjoyed a career as a soprano lasting over half a century, singing at the Eduardo Brito National Theatre and in Cuba, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the USA. She was artistic director of the National Theatre for five years, taught at the National Conservatory and was director of the Lyric Singers of Fine Arts.

Ivonne Haza (1938-2022)
Ivonne Haza (1938-2022)

Italian bassoonist Rino Vernizzi died on 16 June, aged seventy-five. Born in Mezzano Inferiore on 15 November 1946, he studied at the Parma Conservatory and won a series of competitions. He was first bassoon with the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nationale di Santa Cecilia in Rome for a long period, but also toured internationally as a soloist, collaborating with Gatti, Giulini, Marriner, Masur, Oren and Sinopoli. His aim was always to explore all genres, not just classical music, and during his last decade he was able to do this, particularly with jazz.

Swedish-born French experimental composer and artist Nils Thornander passed away in Paris on 10 June, aged sixty-four. Born in Stockholm on 3 May 1958, he moved to France aged fifteen. His work in experimental music and sound creations included a collaboration with Silke Fischer on music for the documentary Putzen in Paris/Paris poussière, sound design for Claims of Victory by Magnus Bärtås (Seoul, 2015), Gilles Verdiani's 2018 feature film Reception (Save The Date) and Absolute Value (created at IRCAM in 2019). As an experimental artist he was known for his plastic creations - immersive hypercubes illuminated using light boxes.

British conductor David Lloyd-Jones died on 8 June, aged eighty-seven.

David Lloyd-Jones (1934-2022)
David Lloyd-Jones (1934-2022)

Moldovan composer, conductor, teacher and administrator Eugen Mamot passed away on 5 June, aged eighty-one. Born in the village of Clococenii Vechi on 30 January 1941, he studied at Slobozia Music College and at the Gavriil Musicescu Arts Institute. His output includes vocal-symphonic, instrumental, choral, folk works and children's music. He taught singing and took a series of jobs and appointments - director of the Ungheni Music School, inspector and head of the Arts department at the Moldovan Ministry of Culture, and editor-in-chief of the music editorial office at the Chisinau Broadcasting organisation. He founded and conducted the 'Igor Vieru' High School of Fine Arts choir in Chisinau, and was artistic director and first conductor of the Lia-Ciocârlia Music Studio.

Czech composer Jaromír Vogel died on 2 June, aged seventy-eight. Born in Prague on 5 November 1943, he wrote music in traditional Jewish style, for fairy tales, films, melodramas, musicals, plays and TV productions. He received various awards and honours. With his producer wife Blanka Vogelová he founded the Vogel Music Agency. He also founded the Šarbilach orchestra.

German conductor Kai Bumann passed away on 2 June, aged sixty-one. Born in West Berlin in 1961, he studied at the Hochschule der Künste Berlin and first worked as a repetiteur. He became first Kapellmeister at Landestheater Detmold and worked at the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden. Later he worked mostly in Poland, becoming chief conductor of Opera Krakowska in 1997. From 2003 until 2013 he was musical director of Warsaw Chamber Opera, and from 2008 until 2012 he was chief conductor of the Polish Baltic F Chopin Philharmonic. In 2018 he conducted the first performance of Penderecki's Lacrimosa No 2.

Posted 23 June 2022 and last updated 14 July 2022 by Keith Bramich




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