Roma Butler

Roma Butler. Soprano, b St John's, Nfld, 30 Apr 1931; Artist Diploma voice (Toronto) 1953. She moved to Toronto in 1949 to study voice with Ernesto Vinci at the RCMT.

Roma Butler. Soprano, b St John's, Nfld, 30 Apr 1931; Artist Diploma voice (Toronto) 1953. She moved to Toronto in 1949 to study voice with Ernesto Vinci at the RCMT. In the 1950s she won four Kiwanis scholarships, the Kiwanis Rose Bowl in 1952, and the second female award in the 1954 'Singing Stars of Tomorrow'. In 1953, as that year's grand award winner of CBC's 'Opportunity Knocks', she was given a 13-week radio series. For three years during the 1950s she was heard on CBC summer radio in the Maritimes. She participated in CBC TV productions of The Marriage of Figaro, The Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado, and Darling Cory, and sang with the COC in The Marriage of Figaro (Susanna, 1955) and The Consul (Anna Gomez, 1954). She performed Schoenberg's Das Buch der hängenden Gärten with Glenn Gould as accompanist for his New Music Associates concert, 9 Jan 1954. In 1956, with Paul McIntyre at the piano, she gave the first Toronto performance in public of Hindemith's Das Marienleben. In 1962 she sang in a Toronto production of Orpheus and Eurydice. She has appeared with the TSO and the Detroit SO. During the 1960s she gave two 13-week series of recitals over radio station CBE in Windsor, Ont. She was a member of the Detroit Opera Theatre, where her roles included Zerlina (1962) in Don Giovanni. She has recorded three works by Oskar Morawetz: 'I Love the Jocund Dance,' 'When We Two Parted,' and Sonnets from the Portuguese (Morawetz piano, 5-ACM 16). Using her married name, Roma Riddell, she taught voice 1977-84 at the University of Windsor, and 1984-90 at the University of Western Ontario, where one of her pupils was the tenor Michael Schade. She moved to Marietta, Ga in 1990.