The Russian baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky, perhaps the greatest operatic baritone of his generation, died this week in London of complications from brain cancer. He was 55 years old.
Siberian born Hvorostovsky won the Cardiff Singer of the World 1989, beating Bryn Terfel (who is in Liverpool just this week performing Falstaff).
In 1992 Dmitri accepted an invitation to come to Liverpool and perform in a gala concert 'Fanfare for a New World' together with a star-studded cast including Montserrat Caballé, Rita Hunter, Alfredo Kraus, Julia Migenes and Sir Peter Ustinov. The concert, staged to mark the 500th anniversary of the Grand Regata Columbus was attended by King Juan Carlos of Spain, HRH Prince Andrew and twelve ambassadors.
You can watch Dmitri's performance that evening 25 years ago by clicking the 'Related News Link' button below.
In June 2015 he announced that he was suffering from a brain tumor, and in December last year announced that he would be withdrawing from all future staged operas. He managed one last surprise appearance during the Met Gala in May this year for a poignant performance of the "Cortigiani" aria from Verdi's Rigoletto. You can see that performance here: