Ernest Adams

(Douglas) Ernest Adams. Baritone, administrator, b Winnipeg 17 Dec 1920, d King City, Ont, 23 Jan 2011. Raised in Vancouver, Adams sang there as a boy soprano and later studied voice with Isabelle Burnada.

Ernest Adams

(Douglas) Ernest Adams. Baritone, administrator, b Winnipeg 17 Dec 1920, d King City, Ont, 23 Jan 2011. Raised in Vancouver, Adams sang there as a boy soprano and later studied voice with Isabelle Burnada. In 1945 he won the first scholarship awarded by the British Columbia Institute of Music and Drama (see Theatre Under the Stars [TUTS]) and studied there with Glyndwr Jones. A leading baritone in Vancouver during the 1940s, he began his career in nightclubs, appeared at TUTS, starred 1945-8 on CBC radio's "Ernest Adams Show," gave recitals, sang with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, and continued voice studies with William Fife. Adams was a winner in the 1947-8 and 1948-9 "Singing Stars of Tomorrow" and moved to Toronto in 1948 for studies at the Royal Conservatory Opera School (University of Toronto Opera Division) with Ernesto Vinci. That year he was the soloist in Walton's Belshazzar's Feast with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and performed with the CBC Opera. He returned to Vancouver (summers 1950-2) to sing at TUTS. An original member of the Canadian Opera Company (COC), he sang 1950-61 in over 30 Toronto and touring productions, making his debut as Marcello in the company's first production (1950) of La Bohème and also singing Almaviva in The Marriage of Figaro in 1951 and other roles. After serving as COC tour manager in 1958 and assistant to Herman Geiger-Torel 1959-68, Adams retired from performance to become full-time tour administrator 1962-9 and publicity co-ordinator 1967-9. He was general administrator of the University of Toronto Opera School 1969-71. He joined the Ontario Place Corporation in 1973 as stage manager and program assistant and in 1974 became operations manager and later program co-ordinator for its presentations at the Ontario Place Forum. Ernest Adams retired in 1985.

He married violinist Patricia Straughan Adams.