The singer Karel Hanuš passed away
It is with great regret that we must inform our colleagues, spectators and friends that Mr. Karel Hanuš, an emeritus soloist of the National Theatre Opera, passed away at the age of 93.
Karel Hanuš was born in Jičín on 14 February 1929, where he graduated from a teaching institute in 1948. He followed by teaching in Ústí nad Labem for two years. Between 1950 and 1952, during his mandatory military service, he was a member of the Vít Nejedlý Army Art Ensemble. He launched his professional career in Ústí nad Labem (1952–1957), where he also studied singing under the guidance of Jitka Švábová. Between 1957 and 1959 he was a member of the F. X. Šalda Theatre in Liberec. He performed in Olomouc between 1959 and 1963 and at the State Theatre of Ostrava from 1963 to 1970. It was there, where he co-founded the Club of Committed Non-Party Members, which was to hinder his access to leading roles in the years to come. His National Theatre debut came on 5 May 1963, when he was invited to sing in a production of Le nozze di Figaro. He became a soloist of the National Theatre Opera from 1 August 1970 after a few additional guest appearances in the roles of Zaccaria (Verdi: Nabucco), Water Goblin (Rusalka) and Beneš (Smetana: Dalibor). He remained with the ensemble until 31 August 1991. In Prague, he was admired for his balanced, resounding, technically certain and versatile baritone, singing – among other roles – Smetana’s Mícha and the Indian (The Bartered Bride), Matouš (The Kiss), Malina (The Secret) and Beneš (Dalibor and The Devil’s Wall), Dvořák’s Count Vilém of Harasov (The Jacobin) and Lucifer (The Devil and Kate), Mozart’s Osmin (Die Entführung aus dem Serail), Masetto (Don Giovanni), Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro) and Don Alsonso (Così fan tutte), Cuno (Der Freischütz), Prince Gremin (Eugene Onegin), Dapertutto, Lindorf, Miracle, Coppélius (Offenbach: Les contes d'Hoffmann), Colline (Puccini: La bohème), Prince Andrei Bolkonsky, Field-Marshal Prince Mikhail Kutuzov, Marshal Nicolas Davout (Prokofiev: War and Peace), Mayor (Janáček: Jenůfa). He recorded a number of Supraphon’s LPs (Smetana: The Kiss, Fibich: The Bride of Messina, Martinů: The Plays of Mary etc.) and made many Czechoslovak Radio recordings (Beethoven: Fidelio, Verdi: Don Carlos, Blodek: In the Well, Berkovec: The Stone Table Inn, Cikker: Play of Love and Death etc.).
We honour his memory!
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