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Topic: Peter Dawson

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Peter Dawson (31 January 1882 - 27 September 1961) was an Australian bass-baritone who gained worldwide renown through his song recitals and the numerous recordings of classical arias, oratorio solos and ballads that he made in a career spanning almost 60 years.

Although his repertoire included a great deal of popular and light music, Dawson possessed a remarkable and impeccable vocal technique that was combined with an attractive dark timbre, an ideal balance of diction and vocal placing, a strong but integrated 'attack' without resort to intrusive aspirates, and a near-perfect ability to manage musical ornaments and roulades.

These qualities probably derived from his studies with Sir Charles Santley, the great English baritone of the Victorian era. If Dawson's interpretations were not profoundly penetrating, they were not shallow either; and in his chosen field of English concert repertoire of the vigorous, manly, outdoors' kind, he remains unequalled. The tremendously high technical quality of his Handel singing sets an unmatched standard, too.

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