(May 16, 1902 Poland – August 15, 1966 New York)
Jan Kiepura was a Polish tenor and one of the most celebrated singers of his time.
Starting out in musicals and performing in many concert halls he also made many musical films with German film companies while also appearing on opera stages.
He was eventually offered contracts at La Scala, Covent Garden and at the Opéra Comique in Paris as well as the National Opera in Berlin and he sang all the leading tenor roles throughout opera houses in Europe including the Vienna Staatsoper.
In 1939 he sang 15 performances at the Metropolitan in New York. He also sang in concerts in the USA appearing in Cleveland, Boston Dallas and Rochester.
Jan Kiepura's repertoire included roles such as Faust, Calaf, Cavaradossi, Rodolfo, Don José, the Duke of Mantua, Alfredo and Chevalier des Grieux
Due to his Jewish heritage he fled Europe when the Nazis came to power and went to live in the USA. A favourite role of his was Danilo in Lehars The Merry Widow and in 1943 he hired a Broadway theatre to star in it with his wife.
He died suddenly of heart failure at the age of 64 and his remains were returned to Warsaw Poland for burial.