Bass baritone Walter Berry was one of modern-day opera's most prolific performers, singing 100 different roles in more than 1,280 appearances at the State Opera, as his interpretations of classical lieder by fellow Austrian Franz Schubert won him his most loyal following in Berry's native land of Austria. Berry made his singing debut in 1953 at the Salzburg Festival and performed throughout Europe for the remainder of the decade. In 1955, Berry was part of the original cast of singers that performed at the re-opening of the State Opera (it had been rebuilt after being destroyed in allied bombing during World War II). He also sang the roles of Wozzeck in Alban Berg's opera of the same name, and Masetto in Mozart's Don Giovanni, while his debut on the U.S. stage occurred eight years later at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. Berry also received acclaim for singing other operatic works, namely parts in Gottfried Von Einem's The Trial and Werner Egk's Irish Legend, and in 1989, Berry became a professor at the Vienna University for Music and Performing Arts. Berry died of a heart attack in Vienna on October 20, 2000, at 71 years of age. ~ Greg PratoPortions of Content Provided by Rovi Corporation.
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