|Year of Birth:||1943|
|Year of Death:||2009|
Anne Collins (29 August 1943 – 15 July 2009) was an English contralto known as versatile operatic singer, praised for her "beautifully warm and wide-ranging timbre, and impeccable diction". In a career that spanned nearly 40 years, she sang a wide range of operatic character roles and other classical pieces, including standard opera repertory, premieres, 20th century pieces, art song and other music.
Collins began her career at Sadler’s Wells Opera, from 1970 to 1976. She debuted at Covent Garden in 1975 as Grimgerde in Wagner's Die Walküre. Collins sang with most of the major British opera companies and at opera houses throughout Europe. She used her early musical training when playing the cello onstage as Lady Jane in Gilbert and Sullivan's Patience in several English National Opera productions. She made 20 recordings of serious opera roles and other classical music, and her performances of several Gilbert and Sullivan roles are preserved on video.
Collins was born in Meadowfield, near Durham, the daughter of "a musical family". From 1961 to 1963 she trained at Bretton Hall College, Yorkshire, intending to become a music teacher. She then studied at the Royal College of Music, London, first the cello and then vocal studies; her teachers included Meriel St Clair and Oda Slobodskaya.
Collins made her debut for Sadler’s Wells Opera as the Governess in The Queen of Spades in 1970. She performed with that company, through its transition into English National Opera (ENO), until 1976, in many roles, including the British stage premieres of War and Peace (Akhrosimova) in 1972 and The Bassarids (Beroe) in 1974. She began her association with Gilbert and Sullivan's operas at ENO, starting with her "formidable" Fairy Queen in Iolanthe (1971). There, she also sang her four roles for the first time in Wagner's Ring cycle (1973).