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Sir Bryn Terfel

Sean Rafferty gets an insight into the life, work and influences of bass-baritone Sir Bryn Terfel at his home in south Wales.

Sir Bryn Terfel welcomes Sean Rafferty into his home in south Wales where he meets some of Bryn's family, including his lively toddler who, Bryn points out, has inherited his lungs. Bryn reflects on his upbringing in Wales, singing in his local church, to the Cardiff Singer of the World Competition in 1989 and the battle of the baritones between him and Dmitri Hvorostovsky. Bryn shows Sean around his home, and they mull over Bryn's hectic international career in the major opera houses, in roles ranging from Mozart to Wagner's Flying Dutchman and Wotan. Sean casts an envious eye around his wine cellar and music room, and their chat throws up insights into the life and work of one of the country's greatest and much-loved singers.

57 minutes

Music Played

  • Richard Wagner

    Entry of the Gods into Valhalla (Das Rheingold)

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Klaus Tennstedt.
    • Warner Classics.
  • Richard Wagner

    The Flying Dutchman: Overture

    Orchestra: Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Georg Solti.
    • DECCA.
  • Stephen Sondheim

    Epiphany (Sweeney Todd)

    Singer: Bryn Terfel. Singer: Anne Sofie von Otter. Orchestra: Sveriges Radios Symfoniorkester. Conductor: Paul Daniel.
    • Bryn Terfel: Bad Boys; Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.
    • DG.
    • 9.
  • Heinrich Pfeil

    Calm is the Sea

    Choir: Canoldir Male Choir. Conductor: D. Clive Griffiths.
    • Conifer.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Ombra Mai Fù

    Singer: Dmitri Hvorostovsky. Orchestra: Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Conductor: Neville Marriner.
    • Philips.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Aprite un po' quegli occhi (The Marriage of Figaro)

    Singer: Bryn Terfel. Orchestra: Scottish Chamber Orchestra. Conductor: Charles Mackerras.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.
  • Giuseppe Verdi

    Falstaff, Act I: "Ehi! paggio... L'Onore! Ladri!"

    Singer: Bryn Terfel. Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Claudio Abbado.
    • DG.
  • Richard Wagner

    Leb' wohl, du kühnes, herrliches Kind! (Die Walküre)

    Singer: Bryn Terfel. Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Claudio Abbado.
    • Wagner: Arias: Bryn Terfel/Berliner Philharmoniker/Abbado.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.
    • 008.
  • Franz Schubert

    Gute Nacht (Die Winterreise, D911)

    Performer: Gerald Moore. Singer: Hans Hotter.
    • EMI.
  • Traditional Welsh

    Bugeilio'r Gwenith Gwyn

    Performer: Hannah Stone.
  • Traditional Welsh

    Ar Lan Y Môr

    Music Arranger: Chris Hazell. Singer: Bryn Terfel. Orchestra: Czech Philharmonic. Conductor: Paul Bateman.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.

Broadcast