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Kerstin Meyer Edit Profile

Mezzo-soprano , Music educator

Kerstin Meyer, mezzo-soprano, music educator. Decorated Commander Order British Empire, officer Italian Order of Merit, medal Litteris et Artibus; named Royal Court singer; recipient Swedish Wasa Order, Norwegian Royal medal, Bundesverdienstkrutz 1 Klasse, Germany. Member Royal Academy Music (Professor of Year).


Meyer, Kerstin was born on April 3, 1928 in Stockholm. Daughter of J.O. and Anna (Eriksson) Meyer.


Student, Royal Conservatory, Stockholm. Student, Accademia Chigiana, Siena, Italy. Student, Mozarteum, Salzburg, Austria.


Her debut was at the Royal Swedish Opera in 1952 as Azucena in Verdi's Il trovatore. She has remained closely associated with that company, but also performed frequently with the Hamburg State Opera, appearing there in the title role of Bizet's Carmen (1959) and creating the roles of Mrs. Claiborne in Gunther Schuller's The Visitation (1966), Alice Arden in Alexander Goehr's Arden Must Die (1967), and Gertrude in Humphrey Searle's Hamlet (1968).

In 1960 she made her debut at Covent Garden as Didon in Les Troyens by Hector Berlioz, and later performed Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier by Richard Strauss and Clytemnestra in the same composer's Elektra (1975–76, conducted by Rudolf Kempe and Colin Davis). In György Ligeti's Le Grand Macabre (1978) she created the role of Amando/Spermando. Her singing career has also included regular visits to other major opera houses of Europe and the U.S.A. and a number of concert tours to Australia, the Far East, and America.

She also took part in both visits of the Royal Opera Stockholm to the Edinburgh Festival. She created the title-role in the British premiere of Gottfried von Einem's The Visit of the Old Lady at Glyndebourne in 1974, in the West German premiere at the Munich Opera House in 1975. She gave a recital with pianist Geoffrey Parsons in the 1976 Aldeburgh Festival, and sang Jocasta in Stravinsky's Oedipus Rex under Sir Georg Solti in the Royal Festival Hall, London, subsequently recording the role for Decca.

She also gave a recital of songs from Sweden, Spain, and France, and German lieder by Gustav Mahler and Hugo Wolff, at the Theatre Royal during Wexford Festival Opera in 1977. She served as the rector of Operahögskolan i Stockholm from 1984 to 1994.


Member Royal Academy Music (Professor of Year).


Married Björn Bexelius.

J.O. Meyer

Anna (Eriksson) Meyer

Björn Bexelius.